IN THE IMMEDIATE AFTERMATH OF THE PITTSBURGH SYNAGOGUE MASSACRE:
ADDRESSING THE HORROR AND TRAGEDY WITH STUDENTS AND CHILDREN
A message from Project Chai, the crisis intervention, trauma and bereavement department of Chai Lifeline
Death, under any circumstance, is a painful and troubling event to face.
When our young people learn about the death of someone whom they knew, particularly if they have not encountered loss before, our task is somewhat clear. We open up a dialogue at an age-appropriate level, we listen to the child’s thoughts and observe their emotional expression, and we validate their personal reaction. Depending upon their age and maturity, and upon the questions which they pose to us, we can offer information, we might correct misunderstandings, we can clarify concepts, and we can offer support that we will continue to be open to them as they struggle to cope. Some of the same messages which we try to give ourselves when faced with tragic loss are given to young people, always at a pace and level which the child or teen can relate to. read full story