How Infants and Toddlers Cope with Grief
Children younger than four can sense that something is wrong as they
experience the grief of their primary caretaker. The absence of the mother
may cause a clear biological reaction. Anger, crying, searching, lack
of appetite, and finally quiet resignation are the ways in which a child
will grieve for the loss of the mother/primary caretaker.
The child should not be passed from caretaker to caretaker.
What one does is far more important to the child this young than what one says. Generally, a grieving infant or toddler needs large doses of tender, loving care--holding, cuddling, and stroking.