No, this is not a sponsored article about insurance or any life plans. Death is inevitable, but as parents, it's the farthest thing from our minds right now.
We have lots of daily responsibilities - sending our kids to school, managing the household, working, socializing, and making time for our passions. The concept of death is something that just has to wait.
We imagine waiting until we retire, traveling the world, and seeing our future grandchildren. That's the dream. To die peacefully in bed, surrounded by our family members.
But what if death comes knocking today? Tomorrow? Next week? How can we, as first-time parents, prepare our little ones for it?
In the Smart Parenting Village, our Facebook group with almost 100k members, an anonymous parent shared a valid concern.
Since it's graduation season, the parent watched a video where a student went up the stage on her own because her parents had passed away.
"How do you deal with the fear of death and leaving your kids untimely. Nakapanood kasi ako ng student na umakyat sa stage mag-isa na walang parents kasi magkasunod namatay. Bigla akong natakot at nagwoworry," the parent wrote.
As always, parents flocked to the comment section to validate the poster and offer their advice.
Here are some of the top recommendations from parents on preparing their children for the unthinkable - their untimely death.
How parents prepare their children for the future
1. Have emergency funds and get life insurance
In addition to prayers, it is important for parents to set aside an emergency fund for themselves and their kids. An emergency fund is an amount of money you have on hand to address any financial problems that may arise. Ideally, it should be 3-6 months' worth of your salary.
Before getting insurance for your children, make sure you and your spouse have your own coverage. If you can afford it, Mommy Joana recommends getting a funeral and burial plan as well. "Maigi na naka-set na ang lahat kasi death is inevitable," she said.
"My goal is to raise them to be secure, independent, and capable of taking care of themselves even if they are left with relatives." —Mommy Evangeline
Some parents also suggested that children should know where important documents are stored in case of an emergency. If your kids are minors, start thinking now about a relative or friend whom you can trust with the documents and even with your kids.
To get started with insurance plans, here's a reputable insurance company recommended by parents that offers plans for as low as P 249.00 a year.
2. Teach your kids life skills like cooking and navigating places
Mommy Andrea, who is raising her child on her own, believes in teaching life skills at an early age for her peace of mind. "Simula nung nakita ko yung improvement sa kanya like siya na nanghihingi ng simple tasks for him to earn money, and he cooks his own food already, medyo nakampante ako."
Read here on how you can raise your child to be business-minded at an early age.
3. Prioritize your health
Mommy Joanne advises the poster, "Don't be afraid to discuss death and loss within the family, especially if you have a history of non-communicable diseases." These diseases include cancer, diabetes, and heart diseases. She believes that such discussions can greatly help in choosing to live a healthy lifestyle and making conscious food choices.
Mommy Maricar meanwhile suggests that parents should get regular check-ups at least once a year to ensure they are in good shape.
4. Raise them to be independent, wise, and godly
Many parents comforted the anonymous parent by suggesting prayer and guiding their children on their faith journey. Mommy Miles emphasized, "I want to make sure na godly ang anak ko. Kahit pa mayaman mong iiwan anak mo, will they be okay if wala silang Diyos?"
That's why she reminds parents that, in addition to financial assets, "Make sure you raise them to be independent, wise, and godly." Read here how to teach kids about faith by example.
5. Be present
Since we never know when death will come, parents say that overthinking and worrying will do more harm than good. Mommy Evangeline, who shared that she lost her parents at an early age, focuses on saving for her kids' future but also tries to be present as much as she can. "My goal is to raise them to be secure, independent, and capable of taking care of themselves even if they are left with relatives."
Put down your phone, and be with your child today.