A Georgia drunk driving death affects the whole family. But, unlike adults, children may not be able to properly express their feelings. Atlanta DUI injury lawyer Shane Smith presents six tips that can help your child handle his grief after losing a loved one to a Georgia DUI car crash.
- Encourage your child to express his thoughts and feelings. Children who have trouble expressing themselves verbally may be more comfortable drawing or writing about their feelings.
- Give your child time to grieve. Recovering from the DUI death of a loved one takes time, even for adults. Don’t hurry the grieving process.
- Expect anger or fear. Just like adults, children can feel angry about the loss of a loved one to a Georgia DUI car crash. Offer your child safe and appropriate ways to express anger. For instance, you can set up a punching bag in the basement or let the child kick a ball in the yard. The Georgia drunk driving accident may be your child’s first experience with death. Take all fears seriously, even if they seem irrational. Explain what happened and answer any questions with simple, direct terms. Be aware that young children are literal thinkers, so avoid using terms that can give mixed messages, such as ‘sleeping’ or ‘gone away.’
- Remind your child that the loved one did not choose to die. Assure your child that the DUI death is not his fault. Explain that there are good and bad choices. Someone made a bad choice to drink while driving. The death occurred because of that bad choice; it is the drunk driver’s fault that the accident occurred, and no one else’s.
- Share your feelings. Your child may not feel comfortable sharing her feelings. When you share your own feelings about the drunk driving death, you let your child know that it is ok to have similar thoughts or feelings.
- Spend time together. Young children often express their thoughts and feelings through play. Older children are more likely to talk about feelings when engaged in another activity.
Atlanta DUI injury lawyer Shane Smith offers more tips for parents in the article, “Six More Ways to Help Your Child After a Georgia Drunk Driving Death.” If you would like additional resources or would like legal advice for Georgia DUI victims, contact the Law Offices of Shane Smith at 866-979-1629.