Hello!

My wonderful (and young — 56 years young ????) Dad recently passed away after a hard fought battle with cancer. Our 4 year old daughter had a wonderfully special and close bond with her Poppy and is absolutely heartbroken and devastated that he is gone. We have told her he is in heaven but it’s just not helping. We let her cry and we talk about him constantly, but just wondering if anyone had any tips to help us out. We try not to cry or grieve ourselves in front of her, to try to keep away some sadness.


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  • This is so sad ! I made a book together with my 8yr old who has Down syndrome, about my dad passing away, with lots of drawings and photo’s. It was kind of healing for me too to do this together


  • This is so hard. My sympathies for your loss. It may help her to show at least some of your sadness, so that she understands that’s normal.


  • 4 year olds have a very simplistic view of life and death. It is black and white to them- one minute he is here and then he is gone. It is only natural that she misses the closeness but I believe with time she will heal. Children have their own ways of dealing with sadness even if they don’t understand fully why they are sad.


  • Yes, she is a lot more resilient than we thought. Shes a tough cookie. She talks about him everyday which is lovely. They has the most special bond. Thankyou :)


  • How awful. So sorry for your loss, losing a parent is so tough! By the looks of it, you’re doing all the right things. Photos, talking about him, letting her cry. Unfortunately, sometimes, the only way to get through it is with time. You say things seem to be a little better already, that should continue with time


  • Thankyou so much for your kind words. It was quite a shock for all of us. He was fighting so hard and unfortunately couldn’t keep fighting. It’s only been 9 weeks, so we are all still very numb, but she seems to be taking it a little better now. I tend to not grieve during the day with her, mainly because we also have a 6 month old. We have given her some framed photos for her room and just reassure her that he is still around, watching her grow and will always be proud of her and love her unconditionally. I guess with time it will get easier, for her, not me. Just got to be strong for her, our baby, and my mum. Again, thankyou for your thoughts and for taking time to reply. Much appreciated.


  • I am so sorry for your loss! I think it is important that she sees that you are upset too. By seeing you grieve in your own way will help her understand that it is ok to feel the way she is feeling. You don’t want her to think that she is the only one that misses poppy. It is a difficult situation to be in for yourself and for her, my thoughts are with your family.


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