Our expert says:
I fully understand your concerns, and your worry about wanting neither to over-react nor under-react. Suicidal thoughts in anyone must be taken seriously, maybe more so in people like teens who are more likely to act on it.
Could you start a calm conversation with him about how hard YOU find it to get over the death of his father, and tactfully ask how he finds it is still affecting him. YOu could also talk about how you worry about his disappointment about having had to give up rugby, and wish you could make it safe for him to do, but you so much want to avoid him suffering any more pain and disappointment, such as would be likely if he began to play again. Chat about how he is handling this --- is he finding anything else he enjoys, which could partly replace the missing rugby ?
I must applaud your nephew for his sensitivity and good sense in noticing these behaviours and for communicating his concerns through his parents, to you.
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