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As a teen, how can I cope with the death of my parent?

It's often a very difficult time in their lives for teens to lose one of their parents. Teens should know that they already have learned how to cope with difficult situations. The important thing to remember is that however people cope, the activity should be safe and offer benefit.

There are many ways to cope and the death of a parent. The most helpful is to talk to people, get support from important family members and friends, to arrange to spend time with them and do activities together. On a more formal basis, bereavement or grief counseling can be most helpful. This can be done on a one to one basis or with a group of people who are in a similar situation. In both cases, there are a number of benefits:

  • One on one counselling creates a safe place for you to express your feelings privately and in the presence of a professional who is not familiar with your family and is there to support you.
  • Group counseling helps you to know that you are not alone and having a similar story as someone else can create a special bond, a meaningful support that can help.

Other therapies can be used in a therapeutic way by channeling the distress that is felt into writing, journaling, music, art, dance or doing a community based project. Teens should have options and pick the types of activities that they feel will help them.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.