Keeping our Teens Drug and Alcohol Free

Chinese (Simplified)EnglishFrenchGermanItalianPortugueseRussianSpanish

In Times of Trauma: 60 Second Conversation Starter

When something traumatic happens, it can be challenging to meet children and teens where they are emotionally and help them sort through their wide-ranging and often confusing emotions.

  1. Connect with your child by first asking what they know and how they feel about it.
  2. Reassure them that you will openly accept their feelings and that it’s ok to feel many different emotions at once.
  3. Encourage your child to write or draw their feelings, which may be easier for a young child or a teen who has a hard time expressing how they feel.
  4. Model self-care to your child by setting routines (which can be healing), limiting news and social media exposure, and engaging in healthy coping activities that bring joy, like a family dance party, a bike ride or a movie night.
  5. Help your child see the good by encouraging activities that support coming together as a community, like writing thank you notes to those who’ve helped or selling their own unique item(s) and donating proceeds to help the victims and their families.

Sources: NorthShore University Health System, SAMHSA

It’s not one 60-minute conversation.
It’s 60 one-minute conversations.