Young Adults Who Lose a Pet
Teens and “Tweens” are always dealing with zig-zagging emotions. The beloved pet may have offered friendship when all other relationships were changing.
The loss of a pet to this age group can be particularly hard. The Pet may have been a source of unconditional love and companionship during childhood. Many young people look at their pet as an anchor of childhood; always loving, forgiving and loyal.
Support of Friends and Family
Family members need to give approval for tears, sadness and acknowledge that it may take quite a bit of time for the stages of grief to pass.Peer acceptance of expressing feelings can make the transition easier. If the friends downplay the sorrow, the adolescent may bury the hurt feelings and questions in his heart, and not feel safe sharing them.
Remember this is the time in life when young adults are trying to find their own true feelings and discover who and what they are as individuals. They may want your understanding, guidance and reassurance, but may use conflict to deflect the opportunities to share.
Encourage Teens To Share Feelings
In our family, we have found the best conversations take place late at night, when the lights are dim and there is pizza to share. Teens and young adults open up their sore places in their hearts when you aren’t eye-ball to eye-ball and busy with a million other things.
I encourage you to take the time in a relaxed setting to connect with your children about how to deal with the loss of their pet. How this is handled now, will remain with them for the rest of their life and will have an influence on how they approach death of other loved ones later in life.
Please check out my latest book “I Lost My Best Friend Today – Healing from Loss of a Pet” You will be so glad you did. It contains a collection of stories and photos of others who have lost their pets.
Judy Helm Wright aka Auntie Artichoke, family relationship author and motivational speaker