5 Tips For Talking To Your Children About What They See In The News
Mommy (Daddy), Why do those people want to hurt everyone?
Last week, world was shaken by another terrorist attack. Hot on heels of Live 8 benefits and in middle of G8 Summit, bombs exploded in London. Adults around globe were glued to CNN and spent time discussing their feelings about event around water cooler at work, with their partners at home or in online discussion groups and e-mails. Collectively, we reached out and were comforted and reassured by words of Prime Minister Tony Blair and other world leaders.
Many adults, however, do not realize how many kids are exposed to same news. Older children may read newspaper or watch news on TV. Others may be exposed to "breaking news" during an interruption in their favorite cartoon t.v. program and still others can easily stumble across information online via MSN, Yahoo, Google or any of other online portals. While adults were declaring their solidarity in War On Terror last week, many children's anxieties and fears were being overlooked.
In our efforts to protect our children and preserve innocence of childhood as long as possible, we attempt to shield them from atrocities that occur in today's turbulent times. When events such as bombs in London, events at elementary school in Belsan, Russia in September, 2004 and September 11th attacks on World Trade Center occur, our natural instinct is to not discuss events of day with our children. Yet, as news of terrorist attacks or other tragedies surround them, your children may be feeling frightened, anxious, sad and confused.
As a parent, only you can decide what news is appropriate for your children but do not assume that your child does not have an awareness of tragic events that have a global impact. It’s important to talk to your children about actions that shape our lives but amount of information you share with your child differs across age groups and even from child to child.