28 Children, Teens and Suicide Loss Helping Teens Cope and Heal Creating a Space for Healing Listen Many adults in a teen’s life are telling them what they should be doing and how they should be doing it. Make time and create space away from daily distractions and responsibilities, and invite the teen to share with you. Let them tell you about their experience of grief, about pondering confusing questions, or about their life in general — and just listen. Model Coping Behavior Many teens have an innate hypocrisy/double-standard detector, so try not to tell them how to deal with grief if you aren’t following your own advice. If you encourage them, for instance, to express emotion, talk outwardly about their feelings, and keep up with their normal routine as much as possible, make sure that you are doing those things, too. Furthermore, many teens who are experiencing grief don’t know how to express that grief in healthy ways. They may not be aware of certain social norms, acceptable behaviors, or therapeutic expressions of grief. By watching the adults around them, including you, they can learn what might work for them, try out different ways to grieve, and successfully and healthily move forward with their lives. Provide Privacy Allow for and respect a teen’s privacy to grieve and express themselves. They are grappling with a lot, and their self-esteem and sense of being may be fragile. They may also be more reliant on peer relationships than adult relationships during this time. Allowing a teen some personal space can decrease tension. Keep in mind, however, that their social environment may have changed in the wake of their loss. Be on the alert for risky behaviors such as drug or alcohol use,