We mourn with those in Santa Fe, Texas at the loss of lives in yet another school shooting. We ask “why” and we will hug our loved ones even closer tonight. How do we talk about this with our children? Our friends? Ourselves?
In the aftermath of a tragedy, it’s normal to feel powerless, sadness, anxiety, fear, anger or any mix of these emotions. We encourage everyone to reach out to family, friends or counselors to express your feelings and explore effective and healthy ways to cope with your emotions.
In the next few days and weeks, it will be important to look out for each other – be particularly aware of signs that indicate you or someone you know may be feeling hopeless including:
- Withdrawing and isolating oneself
- Sleeping all the time or not enough
- Using drugs or alcohol more than usual
- Talking about death or dying
At a time like this, the simple things will help. Try to:
- Stay open – talk to friends, family and loved ones about your feelings
- Stay present – take breaks from social media and the news
- Stay active – take a walk, go to the gym, run errands
- Stay connected – spend time with family and friends, volunteer for a cause that’s important to you
Please take care of yourself and those around you – physical health and emotional connectedness can go a long way toward making you feel like yourself again.
If you or someone you know is experiencing signs of distress, please reach out to a mental health professional or get anonymous, free support text LOOKUP to 494949 or call 800-284-8439
A few resources to help:
- Talking to Your Children About a Tragedy
- Dealing with the Effects of Trauma – A Self-Help Guide
- School Shootings and Violence
- What Schools Can Do To Build Resilience in Their Students