Credit hours:

Course Summary

Placement in care often brings complicated feelings of shame, relief, or guilt for children and youth. In order to effectively serve and provide for their needs, we need to help children and youth recognize their grief and meet them where they are in their grieving process. Through this module, you will gain knowledge and tools to help children and youth cope with feelings of grief and ambiguous loss.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • Information about ambiguous loss and complicated grief
  • Unique challenges children and youth in care may face through the grieving process
  • The ways grief and trauma can manifest in a child or youth's behaviors
  • Strategies children and youth can use to cope with ambiguous loss and/or grief

Step 1

Watch the following video "Best Practices for Grief: Foster Care Placement." This video is a part of a series examining grief and loss experiences of children and teens, and was selected because of its valuable introduction to the grief children and youth may experience due to being part of the foster care system. 

Step 2

The effects of grief that children and youth in foster care experience vary based on their developmental age. Review the following article published by Fostering Perspectives, "The Effects of Grief and Loss on Children in Foster Care" to learn what grief signs to be aware of for all children and youth.

Step 3

Review the following article "Ambiguous Loss Haunts Foster and Adopted Children" to learn about the inevitable loss a child or youth experiences during their foster care (sometimes repeatedly) and how incredibly difficult this type of grief is to process.

Step 4

Gregory Manning discusses the difference between a traditional and non-traditional loss and how the profound loss and trauma a child or young person in foster care may experience manifests and impacts their behaviors in the following video "Grief and Loss for Youth in Foster Care & Adoption."

Step 5

Watch Matthew's video which reflects the trauma, grief, and loss he dealt with throughout his foster care experience. 

Step 6

Review "What Young People Can Do: Healing From Loss," a simple form to help guide and validate a young person healing from loss.

Step 7

Share the "Bill of Rights for Grieving Youth in Foster Care" tool with your child. These rights reflect the values, dreams, and aspirations of current and former foster youth suffering from tremendous loss and can be helpful to a grieving young person and/or a young person who has not yet begun the grieving process.

Step 8

Join the discussion in the comments below to answer the following question:

How can you help young people in your care suffering from grief and loss?

Step 9

Finished the module? If you are logged in as a subscribed user, take the quiz to earn your Continuing Education Credit hours and certificate! 

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Course Discussion

maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

I don't know you are looking for me to say all I know have been aiready said some the child get attached b to the care giver it mostly happen when thay young some time the care giver get fired some thay quit a the child gose though the process again each time but the child hahdle it batter each time
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

a child may not act out at frist if it no use to you or it surrounding you some how need to find way to give the child the feeling safety that he or she is in a good place to be
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

a child may not act out at frist if it no use to you or it surrounding you some how need to find way to give the child the feeling safety that he or she is in a good place to be
jkatkinson's picture

jkatkinson said:

We can help by giving them positive outlets for their emotions, ensuring they are receiving the counseling needed & letting each one know it is normal to feel this way.
rlatkinson's picture

rlatkinson said:

Reassuring the children in our care is one of the best ways we can help guide them through their grief. Letting him or her talk freely, cry, vent - whatever the case may be- and not judging the child or parent.
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

be understanding be ware of calendder dates look for the 5 stages of grief denial anger depression bargailng acceptance of grief
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

experience of children and teen by evangelilna the 5 stages I like the ted galway the cure of grief was good accepting griev ing in silence by Rachel stephrnson is good Kelley lynn when some one you love dies I d0nt know good grief by Elaine manfeld the adventure of grief dr. Geoff warburton
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

by understanding careing listening and answering honestly show a stable interaction and patiently attempting to commact with the child
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

I cannot plese you I am no longer go to try
maurice22's picture

maurice22 said:

some time you have to wait a child is ready to deal with his or and her grief it normal expected the child to be depressed