Breaking News
More () »

13 WTHR Indianapolis | Indianapolis Local News & Weather

How to talk to your children about tragedy

As we learn more about the two teenagers killed in Delphi, we turned to the Mayo Clinic for advice on how to talk to kids about tragedy and loss.

DELPHI (WTHR) - As we learn more about what happened to two teenagers in Delphi, we begin to think about how difficult it is to have conversations about it with our children. We turned to the Mayo Clinic for some expert advice on how to talk to kids about any tragedy you may encounter in your community:

They suggest talking about it with your child because it can help them understand what's happened, feel safe, and begin to cope. If you don't tell them, they may hear it from someone else.

Also, bring up the topic when your kids are most likely to want to talk, perhaps before dinner time. Ask them what they've heard and the questions or concerns they have. Let those questions drive the conversation.

When explaining, give them the facts. Don't exaggerate, but don't share more details than are necessary.

If they are having trouble coping or processing what happened -- they suggest:

  • Stay calm.
  • Reassure them that they're safe.
  • Maintain a routine.
  • Limit their exposure.
  • Encourage them to talk about their feelings or cry.
  • Spend extra time together.

RELATED: More stories about Libby German and Abby Williams