Children First: Helping Children Cope

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Tragic events can be traumatic for children, as they are for adults.

But Dr. Lee Lee Marlow of Weems Mental Health Center says children may need a different kind of care.

"Their understanding is different about what has happened, but at their age, younger children really don't have the cognitive ability to understand how and why things like this happen," said Marlow. "It's really important to listen to them and be aware of their behaviors, and not really share a lot of information but reassure them that they are okay."

Marlow says elementary school and junior high school students have certain abilities and understanding of this type of situation.

"With them, let them express their feelings and let them know that you're there to listen to them," Marlow said. "To think your child feels the same way you do is an error. You just have to listen and see how they are feeling."

Marlow says children should be reassured that they are safe, because you are there for them.