Here’s how to help kids process Hurricane Harvey news
Kids can’t help but see the tragic images from Harvey on TV, their phones and social media. Here’s how to help them process what they see.
“Explain what’s happening, but at the same time always come back to the security for the child,” said Dr. David Knapp, a mentor with the Arizona-based Grief Relief Ministries.
Knapp said it is important for parents to reassure kids that they are safe and remind them that the police, fire, rescue workers are working to keep everyone safe.
Of course, keep it age appropriate, he added.
“A 12-year-old you might explain more to than a 4-year-old who happens to see the flooding and somebody’s dog swimming in the water,” Knapp said.
At the same time let them understand that there is pain there, he said. “It’s normal and it’s okay for people to hurt, but there are answers and they will get through that,” he said.
Once parents assured their child that they are safe, maybe suggest ways to help victims with a fundraiser of some sport.
“That’s one of the issues of dealing with grief and loss,” Knapp said. “Actually, sometimes helping other people helps you cope with your own grief.”
It’s a great thing to discuss tragic events with you kids because you could have an impact on their life for the future.
“They might just grow up and become one of those rescue workers,” he said. “And they’re able to do that with the confidence that you gave them as a child.”
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