jyaki (jyaki) wrote in little_details,
jyaki
jyaki
little_details

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Effects of witnessing death-- changing with age?

So, I have two scenarios.  They're essentially the same except for one detail, which may or may not be crucial.  It goes like this:

A little boy comes home one day to find his father's dead body; the man has committed suicide.  His father is his only living relative, and they were somewhat close (they had a good relationship, but the father's job took him away from home frequently and for long stretches, in which the son, in this fantasy-ish society, was expected to fend for himself) until the past few months when the father rapidly became distant and depressed after a terrible scandal in which a number of people died.

Obviously this will be a traumatic event for the little boy no matter what, but my question is this: how much difference would it make if this event took place when the boy is age five, or when he's age eight?  I assume he will tend to process the event differently, but how much, and in what ways?


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