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What age is too young for a child to attend a funeral?

My uncle died and I am undecided on if my 6 1/2 year old son should go to the funeral or not. My uncle lived down the street from us, we weren't super close, but my son has been around him several times.

On one hand, I don't want him to be sad. But on the other hand, I want him to go and learn that death happens and how to deal with it. I am very weird about death and still have a hard time with funerals. I think this is in part to the fact that I did not lose anyone close to me when I was young.

So I'd like to hear opinions about what other mothers think or have done in similar situations. Thanks!


Asked by Anonymous at 6:18 PM on Jan. 25, 2011 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

This question is closed.
Answers (10)
  • We always took ours with us. Death is a part of life and the earlier you introduce that idea to children, I think the better off they are. When they ask questions, you answer them to the best of your ability. Yes, we are sad because we have lost someone we love. Things like that. As long as you are real and honest, your children will be just fine. At least, ours always have been.

    Answer by NannyB. at 6:25 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • my father died when i was 10, my brother was 6 and he stayed with our grandmother for the funeral. he was too young. our grandmother died a year and a half later when he was 8 and he attended

    Answer by momofone725 at 6:20 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • I think you should do it on the basis do you feel he needs to say goodbye. I would explain it to him and let him decide if he want to attend.

    Answer by karing4elmas at 6:21 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • I dont go to funerals. Why? My grandpa died when I was around 9 and I had to go to his. I was totally devastated and it scarred me for a long while. I didnt go to another one until I was 15 and my cousin was murdered. I wasnt comfortable then either. When I had kids I made the choice not to attend any at all. I dont think the kids need to go to a funeral to understand death. Its a very sad thing and kids have a hard enough time handling life. So my opinion is you shouldnt ever take them. As adults if they choose to go, then fine they can.

    Answer by gemgem at 6:22 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • IMO, 6 1/2 is old enough to attend a funeral, but truly I would ask him if he wants to go. Talk to him beforehand about what to expect; that people will be sad, what happens, etc.

    Answer by Scuba at 6:23 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • I wasn't allowed to go to a funeral until I was 8. I say any child under the age of 7-8 is probably too young to go to a funeral.

    Answer by alf2651 at 6:26 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • My son was 3 when my grandmother passed away, he saw her in the casket but doesn't remember it now. He's almost 7 now. We just said she was sleeping. He was in a side room watching a movie during the actual funeral.

    Answer by tys_mama at 6:40 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • I think 8 is still young I remember my 1st funeral and it scared me looking at the body and my mom made us go to the viewing before the funeral and to this day I can't stand seeing a dead body it really freaks me out I wouldn't take him I'd find someone to watch him

    Answer by chica679 at 8:10 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • I think it depends on the maturity of the child. My daughter lost her great grandma last year when she was 5. Shes very emotional about everything so we decided she wasn't ready for that yet.

    Answer by ShhhItsASecret at 8:45 PM on Jan. 25, 2011

  • My DD was 2 when her grandma passed. She was at the service, and was fine. She didn't understand it much at that age. She was fine for her cousins were there and other family members. I think 6.5 years old is fine to be at a funeral.

    Answer by KairisMama at 9:25 PM on Jan. 25, 2011