Talking to Children About Today's Tragic Events
By Northwestern Memorial HospitalPsychiatry and Psychology December 14, 2012
Talk to your children about the event. Understand their thoughts and feelings about the event, and make sure that you understand if they have any concerns. Ask them open ended questions such as, “So what do you think about what happened?” or “How are you feeling about what happened.” If they don’t immediately open up, share some of your thoughts or feelings as a way to start a conversation. Avoid starting the conversation with pointed or leading questions, such as “Are you upset?” or “Are you feeling okay?” Try to talk to your child at a time when you can devote your full attention and you can pay attention while they are communicating, both verbally and non-verbally. Avoid discussions before bedtime.