TIP of the WEEK: Explaining Tragedy
June 17, 2016
With so many difficult stories on the news over the past few weeks it can be challenging to help those with PWS understand so much heartache. If your child is struggling with understanding how and why these things happen here are some ways to help them through:
1. Limit access to the news. Many of us have news stations on in the background without realizing that our kids are watching and listening. Turn the tv or radio off and give your child (and yourself) a break for a while.
2. Answer only what is asked. If your child asks you questions about what they saw or heard listen carefully to the question and don’t elaborate. Answering more than what they ask runs the risk of giving more information than they are ready to receive.
3. Balance the bad with good. Yes, bad things have been happening all over the world but don’t overlook the good. Find stories of hope, humor and bravery and highlight those to offset the bad.
It can be hard to explain how bad things happen to innocent people, especially when those people are children. Keep the information simple and brief and show them all of the good things happening around them. Above all else, tell them that they are safe and loved and show them how they can help those in need.
Patrice Carroll is Latham Centers’ world-renowned Prader-Willi Syndrome specialist. She works with Latham Centers’ residents with PWS, their families and consultants, continuously learning and teaching about PWS best practices.