HOW TO TALK WITH KIDS ABOUT THE RECENT SCHOOL SHOOTING Resources for Parents, Caregivers, and Children
We at Partners in Prevention are devastated by the tragic loss of children and their teachers at Robb Elementary. School must be a place of safety and adults must provide it. There is absolutely no time to lose in changing this terrible pattern of gun violence.
Children and parents are hurting and are frightened right now. It is important that communities are provided with resources that can help during these traumatic times. The National Child Traumatic Stress Network has shared some helpful materials for helping youth to cope after such a horrific event. The NCTSN's mission is to raise the standard of care and improve access to services for traumatized children, their families and communities throughout the United States. The guidelines are available in pdf format. Download them by clicking on the Parent Guidelines for Helping Youth After the Recent Shooting image below.
The guidelines include the following helpful information:
Feelings of anxiety
Fears that another shooting will occur
Changes in behavior
Changes in habits
Staying focused on the shooting
Things I Can Do For Myself
Take care of myself
Help each other
Put off major decisions
Give myself a break
Things I Can Do For My Child
Spend time talking
Find time to have conversations
Help children feel safe
Maintain expectations or “rules”
Address acting out behaviors
Limit media exposure
Address withdrawal/shame/guilt feelings
Monitor changes in relationships
Address radical changes in attitudes
Get adults involved
Empower your child
Seek professional help
“Children's and teen’s reactions to the shooting are strongly influenced by how parents, relatives, teachers, and other caregivers respond to the event. They often turn to these adults for information, comfort, and help. There are many reactions that are common after mass violence. These generally diminish with time. Knowing about them can help you to be supportive, both of yourself and your children.” —NCTSN Parent Guidelines
We urge parents and caregivers to get educated about how to talk to children about trauma. Children's mental health is at stake. We will share additional resources in the coming days. In the meantime, please stay safe.
WE ARE COMMITTED TO BRINGING YOU RELEVANT FOOD FOR THOUGHT TO KEEP THE CONVERSATION ON CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION TIMELY.