Reassuring Children In Troubled Times

With the Coronavirus continuing to spread throughout the United States and world, fear panic and anxiety has run rampant as one institution after another shuts down or provides ominous updates about their current conditions. These circumstances are difficult enough for adults to deal with. For children,, this experience could be terrifying.

According to poynter.org, in such circumstances, parents might be left wondering how they can reassure their children and provide some semblance of comfort during these trying times. Fortunately, educators and child psychologists opine that there are several steps that can be taken, including:

Be Honest But Not Alarming

Experts recommend explaining to young people that, while the situation is bad, that many important people are doing everything possible to protect them.

Provide Distractions

During ominous occasions, television and radio reports frequently dwell on the latest bad news regarding the event in question. Parents are encouraged to try and provide some type of distraction for their children. Whenever and wherever possible, adults should play games with their young, let them watch movies or engage in some other type of enjoyable activity.

Listen

If one’s children want to discuss the offending incident, parents should afford their offspring the liberty to do so. In many instances, allowing children, or anyone else, the forum to express their concerns and feelings can be quite therapeutic.

Do Not Display Any Level Of Panic

This advice can prove difficult. However, children feed off the vibes emitted from adults like their parents. Ergo, said parties are strongly urged not to let their emotions get the better of them or blow things out of proportion. Such behavior can have a trickle down impact that could potentially traumatize the young persons who witness it.

Do Not Dismiss Feelings

As much as parents should desire to reassure their children, said individuals should never dismiss a child’s concerns. Such action could make the youth in question feel embarrassed, which make cause them to bottle their feelings.

Truly Offer Reassurance

While honesty is crucial to the process of understanding, young people will look to their parents and other adult figures for reassurance. While elders should not make any specific promises about when or how the circumstances in question will improve, said parties should speak in general terms. Acceptable statements can include “nothing stays the same” and bad times do not last.” The most important issue is demonstrating to the young people under their tutelage that people care and are looking out for their best interests.

Sources:

1. https://childmind.org/guide/helping-children-cope-traumatic-event/
2.https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/nine_tips_for_talking_to_kids_about_trauma

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