Explaining euthanasia to a preschooler
April 1, 2007 7:00 PM Subscribe
Share your personal stories about explaining euthanasia to a preschooler.
posted by dejah420 to Pets & Animals (19 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I have a 21 year old cat who has become simply miserable. Drastic lifesaving measures would only prolong her discomfort at this point. I love my cat, and don't want to put her down, but I believe I'm going to follow the vets recommendation.
However, despite my familiarity with psychological and ethical implications of death and dying, and despite reading tons of stuff on the web about explaining death to preschoolers, I find myself tearing up and getting emotional when I even think about taking Elderly Cat to the vet, and haven't been able to formulate a method for talking to my son about what is going to happen. I want to be honest with him, and I want him to realize that death is an inevitable part of life, but I don't want him to be frightened.
So, I'm asking for personal stories about explaining a pet's death or euthanasia to a child. What worked for you? How did you find the strength to hold yourself together and not be a soggy weeping mess? Would you, in this case, even try to explain euthanasia, or would you just tell him she passed on? I think I'm so upset about losing my long term cuddle buddy that I'm not thinking very clearly.