I think they should ordinarily. Funerals are part of the life cycle and a child should learn that it is normal.
I was forced to attend funerals at age 5 and not told what they were, nor could I get anyone to tell me why people dressed in white were lying in boxes in living rooms and the lids got closed - and they got put in the ground. At the wedding I attended next, I thought the bride was going to die and be buried after the ceremony. No one would tell me anything until I was in the 1st grade - teachers told me. I dislike weddings and funerals to this day.
Take a child to a funeral? - In the name of God tell them what is going on.
I think it depends on who's funeral it is. If you are going to a funeral to support a friend or a long distance relative, keeping children home is probably a wise idea. On the other hand, if it is a close relative that the child was involved with, I think taking the child is appropriate. Of course, you should openly discuss what is happening so the child is not confused. But, it is only fair to let the child say goodbye as well. When my grandma passed away, I took my children. At the end, my daughter looked at me and said... Mommy, it is okay. I saw Grandma and she told me everything was going to be alright. - What a grownup thing to say out of a 5 year olds mouth!
Throughout history, small children have attended funerals, it is part of their learning of life and death, it's perfectly fine for them to attend.
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