Our world can be a dangerous place. We want our kids to feel safe. The suicide bombing in Manchester England at the Ariana Grande Concert has shaken our world. The events have the potential to cause worry and fear in us and particularly in our children. How can we help them to cope with these events?
1. Listen more. Children and teens will have questions, sometimes many of them. It is very hard to help, if you do not know what they need to know. Spend some time listening to their worries and fears. Listen for what information they need to know, to understand what has happened. Explain just enough to answer their question and at their level. It is okay to say you don’t know something, and then work together to find out.
2. Keep your regular schedule. Bedtimes, mealtimes and family times all stay the same. kids thrive on routine to help them feel that the world makes sense.
3. Make sure you have gotten yourself stable and grounded. Children look to you to find reassurance. You are the rock in their world, and if they can ground themselves in your love and stability, they can weather the storm better.
4. Limit news and social media, and share as a quieter joint time afterwards for talking and sharing how these events impact us.
5. Remember that bad things happen a lot. Just because something happened at one place and time, doesn’t means it will happen at the next event. Find ways to remember that the world is full of good as well.
6. Get active in doing something positive in the world today. Plant a flower, help someone who needs a bit of extra assistance, send cards to those who are sick. Be the positive you want to see in the world.
7. Remember that just because a child does not show signs of worry or anxiety doesn’t mean that they are not concerned. Pay attention to how your child is acting and note any changes. Ask them if you are concerned.
Just a Bit More About That-David
Pictures used with permission, Creative Commons Usage