Ask: What comfort can you give a child whose father just died?

“I know this world/body is not real it something I created out of my vane imaging {ego}. I understand that but What comfort can you share with an eight year old child whose father just died. I know the usual "He's in heaven with God ", etc.  Confused on how to counsel My Great Grandaughter  from an ACIM VIEW POINT. I GET TEARS EYES THINKING WHAT SHE IS GOING THRU.” – JP

It is the same comforting a child as it is comforting an adult. First, get yourself out of the way. Put aside your own need to comfort and ask what the other needs. Most people just want to be heard and understood. So listen to your great-granddaughter and validate what you hear. “I see you are missing your Dad. I know it’s very painful”, etc. And you may want to give a lot of hugs! But make sure she actually wants the hugs and that you are not just satisfying your own urge to “fix” her.
Loss is a part of life in the world. Grief is not bad or wrong. It is the normal response that the body and the human psyche have to loss. It is a process and you may want to educate yourself about the process to help your great-granddaughter understand her physical and emotional feelings. She is going to experience loss in many forms as she goes through life and she needs to understand the experience. You can reassure her that time does make it better.
Don’t try to give your great-granddaughter more information than she’s asking for. Put aside your own need to inform or to educate. If you try to give her more information than she’s seeking then you will only confuse or overload her in her already overwhelmed state. If she does ask about where her father has gone, ask her what she thinks happened to him and let that be your guide. If she has her own ideas, then let them be. If she’s truly open and wants to know what you believe then you can share what you believe.

It is difficult as students of A Course in Miracles to share what we’ve learned and experienced with others because even though it is comforting to us it is not comforting to others who are not seeking Truth and are still identified with an ego (personal thought system). So you probably don’t want to say, “Your Dad never really existed in the first place so nothing happened when he died.” But you can point out that he is still with her in her thoughts. Or you can say something like there is a part of God (or whatever she will understand) in everyone and It is Eternal and That she shares with her dad.

Learn about the books The ACIM Mentor Articles, The Plain Language A Course in Miracles, 4 Habits for Inner Peace, and Releasing Guilt for Inner Peace at


Christine said…
Thanks, Liz, so very clear.
Since it's all metaphor, if someone comes from a Christian paradigm (or other), I think it's perfectly acceptable to use the metaphor (tool) which the person has to bring them comfort. Since it's about them and not my need to defend anything.
Anonymous said…
Thank you Liz - a timely reminder. My friend emailed me to reschedule our visit because she and her Mom put their dog down yesterday. Normally I would have rushed in to fix but instead had peace lilies delivered and let my holiness bless them. I remember when my husband passed, for a handful of day I was swarmed with well intended loved ones and their flurry of questions and doings. All I wanted was some quiet space to go within, to be still with my beloved. Yes, put away your own need and listen with the heart.
Adrian said…
I've seen a few children that were more awake than most adults. there are Unity churches that are giving this information to children in their Sunday children's class. The human race is catching up

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