In the aftermath of the horrific earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan in the past couple days, we’ve all seen the media coverage including videos and images in the news and on the internet. It’s important to keep in mind how this coverage affects children. In my experience working with children, often watching traumatic images on TV such as natural disasters can stir up a sense of insecurity or fear. Right after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, some of the children I worked had to deal with the fear that the same might happen to them, even though they lived in California, miles from where the devastation hit. It is important to realize that children may deal with such events and process the information differently than most adults do. In some cases when children are having trouble dealing with their emotions therapy can be a useful tool in helping them gain perspective and expressing their fears.
Here are some helpful links with more information on talking to your children http://kidshealth.org/parent/positive/talk/news.html# http://www.kff.org/entmedia/upload/Key-Facts-Children-and-the-News.pdf http://ptsd.about.com/od/causesanddevelopment/a/EffectofKatrina.htm
For more information on how to find a therapist please visit the Los Angeles Family Therapy website http://www.losangelesfamilytherapy.com/