Clinical experts say parents should discuss terror attacks with kids

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 23: Police officers stand at the Miller Street and Corporation Street Crossroads, in front of the Manchester Arena on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England. An explosion occurred at Manchester Arena as concert goers were leaving the venue after Ariana Grande had performed. Greater Manchester Police have confirmed 19 fatalities and at least 50 injured. (Photo by Dave Thompson/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Monday’s terror attack in Manchester, England terrified the world, including Hoosiers.

Many kids and teens are struggling to wrap their heads around the explosion that killed more than 20 people and injured dozens more at a popular singer’s concert.

Counselors with Families First are hoping parents will open up the lines of communication with their children.

Clinical Director, Pat Anderson, says even adults can have a difficult time dealing with tragedy.

Anderson says it’s important for parents to be able to cope first, because their children’s actions and emotions often reflect theirs. Then, Anderson says parents need to find a balance between serious conversations on terror and being too casual on the topic.

“Parents can get really fearful or they can say, ‘that’s silly.’ You don’t need to be sorry about that. That happened in England,’ so I think we want to stay away from the extremes,” Anderson said.

She also added that there’s a clear difference between concern and fear. Anderson said it’s normal for people to feel concern, but shouldn’t be so fearful they feel physically sick, are paranoid, or even refuse to leave their home or let their children attend events.

Click here for more on how to contact a counselor to help you find ways to speak to your child.