Talking to Your Kids About Violence in the News

What a tragedy. On a beautiful Sunday morning, a gunman goes on a shooting rampage at a place of worship in Oak Creek. This happens just a short time after a mass shooting in Aurora, Colorado, and at a sacred place where anyone should feel safe. While there are not easy answers to explain this tragedy, even for adults, some of the following brief ideas may help parents help your kids navigate through this event:

  1. Try to reassure your child as much as possible. Share that these tragedies are uncommon, and that you will always do everything you can to keep your child and your family safe.
  2. Give your child the opportunity to talk about the events described on TV if he/she wants (without “forcing it.”). Answer questions honestly. As a parent, you know your child best. Try to be there when your child is viewing the news.
  3. Try to maintain a normal routine.
  4. Point out the heroic and kind acts shown by first responders, and other members of the community.
  5. Use this event as an opportunity to teach tolerance – that regardless of our background, faith, color, language, we are all human beings, all deserving equal dignity and respect.

~ Robert Hartmann, MD, Forest View Pediatrics
Robert Hartmann, MD


Talking to Your Kids About Violence in the News — 1 Comment

  1. Thank you for posting this column. Just when I thought my kids were getting over the movie massacre, the Temple massacre happens!

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