If we do not forgive situations, such as a tornado that was destructive, how can we aid children in feeling safe after something like this occurs?  In other words, how then can we avoid post-traumatic feelings in the child?

You can work on two issues.  The first is acceptance of what happened.  This can take time, but it may help children learn that this is an imperfect world and so bad things do happen.  The second is to work on what I call “the safe feeling,” which is a sense of being protected by parents and other loved ones.  Of course, the “safe feeling” should not become an illusion that bad things will not happen.  Working simultaneously on acceptance that bad things can happen, and that loved ones are here to assist, may help the child reduce any post-traumatic stress that has emerged.

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Categories: Ask Dr. ForgivenessTags: , , , ,


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