How To Help Your Child After A School Shooting
As I sit here feeling devastated for the Parkland families and kids affected by this awful tragedy, I am sure I am not the only one wondering how to best be there for our kids and the community during such a difficult time. I have received some valued resources and insight from our ihelpmoms family therapists and wanted to make sure to pass them on.
3 Important things to remember when helping your own children process a traumatic situation.
1. You have to know your children and follow their lead.
2. Answer their questions, validate their feelings, and reassure their safety.
3. Keep the tv off!
Here are additional important tips from school psychologists:
Important overviews for helping grieving teens after a tragedy:
For moms that want to donate to help victim’s families:
Here are good books recommended to assist children with loss and tragedy:
Badger’s Parting Gifts—Susan Varley (Picture Book for 4+)
A touching look at death, and how life goes on. Badger’s friends are saddened by his passing, but they come to realize that everyone lives on through their gifts of kindness and the happy memories that remain.
Bear’s Last Journey—Udo Weingelt (Picture Book for 4+)
This gentle picture book succeeds in articulating the sense of loss and confusion that children may feel when a loved one dies. Old Bear is very sick. With his animal friends gathered around him, Bear tells them that that he must say good-bye, for he is going on a special journey. “But…but…you’re not dying?” asks Rabbit, and Bear admits that he is. All the animals are saddened by the news, but the little fox is especially upset – hurt and angry and confused. He cannot imagine life without Bear. How Fox and the other forest animals
A Terrible Thing Happened – A Story for Children Who Have Witnessed Violence or Trauma Ages 4+—Margaret M. Holmes
Sherman Smith saw the most terrible thing happen. At first he tried to forget about it, but soon something inside him started to bother him. He felt nervous for no reason. Sometimes his stomach hurt. He had bad dreams. And he started to feel angry and do mean things, which got hi m in trouble. Then he met Ms. Maple, who helped him talk about the terrible thing that he had tried to forget. Now Sherman is feeling much better. This gently told and tenderly illustrated story is for children who have witnessed any kind of violent or traumatic episode, including physical abuse, school or gang violence, accidents, homicide, suicide, and natural disasters such as floods or fire. An afterword by Sasha J. Mudlaff written for parents and other caregivers offers extensive suggestions for helping traumatized children, including a list of other sources that focus on specific events
© 2015, National Association of School Psychologists, 4340 East West Highway, Suite 402, Bethesda, MD 20814, (301) 657-0270 www.nasponline.org
Our prayer are with all of the children and families affected by this terrible tragedy. It is a day for mourning and for praying for those moms that do not get to hug their kids again.
ihelpmoms.com sends our deepest sympathy and our charity coalition Moms Doing Good Together is here to help with meals, donations, supplies.