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leftofpunk
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5 and a half years ago my GFs brother died (huffing). Today is his birthday and every year on his birthday my GFs parents her sister and her kids and Sarah and I go to the cemetery, eat cupcakes, clean up the site and let off balloons. Sarah's family are christian but Sarah isn't christian but she and I always argue about if someone should have faith in something. I'm not big on faith and she doesn't see a problem with faith (I have no clue what she has faith in though because by definition she's an atheist).

 

 

Anyways in past years the older grandkids (6 years old) will ask where uncle Jake is and grandma will say up in heaven with God. Well this year my son is 4 and very aware of his surroundings and I know he's going to hear this and pick up on it.

 

How should I handle this?!?!?!

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(I have no clue what she has faith in though because by definition she's an atheist).

 

 

Anyways in past years the older grandkids (6 years old) will ask where uncle Jake is and grandma will say up in heaven with God. Well this year my son is 4 and very aware of his surroundings and I know he's going to hear this and pick up on it.

 

How should I handle this?!?!?!

 

4 years old? I would just explain heaven=gone. 4 year olds might be aware of their surroundings and all, but to ponder/accept things like death? I dunno. You also don't want out of his innocence to say something like heaven doesn't exist or what not to family members who may be so sensitive due to their grief. It may cause a huge unwanted argument. While it's highly probable nothing after life exists, it's not proven. I don't really think dealing with the loss of a loved one is the time to open up that can of worms (in my opinion). I don't think theirs anything wrong with people having coping mechanism that's how I view it anyway. Just because your GF may or may not be an atheist doesn't mean it's any that more easier to deal with a loss. Death is an extremely hard thing to deal with as it is.

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I'm not sure, 4 is a tricky age, they are very aware adn curious, but they are exactly well educated yet. I'd probably say something when grandma is not around to the effect of 'Your uncle died, and people have a lot of different ideas about what happens after you die and that when he's older he can learn more about it." Seriously everything I'm thinking sounds like it wuold either go over a kids head, or talk down to them. Anyway you could not take him? Saying something to the effect that he's too young to understand and you think it might just unduly upset or scare him. ?

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Father of 3 here (boy-5, boy-3, girl 8mos asleep in my lap right now). Where I live I know that my kids are going to be exposed to xtian mythology. Heck, I've heard my 3yo singing 'jesus loves me' for chrissake! :eek: My oldest also comes home from school occasionally saying things about god (I know it's not coming from the teacher, so it must be the other kids), but he's not terribly interested in talking about god right now. I know that one day he will be, and in the meantime I talk with my wife about god (or the lack thereof) when they're around. I also try to encourage an attitude of skepticism in my home.

 

All in all, I try not to worry about it since there is nothing that I can do to prevent him from hearing myths being presented as truth where I live. I will just have to be ready to talk with them when they are ready to talk to me about it.

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