helping a 4 year process tragedy

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-12-2003
helping a 4 year process tragedy
4
Fri, 04-19-2013 - 1:13pm

So we live just north of Boston. Thankfully our family and friends were not directly affected. I was home when it happened but locked myself in the room to watch. We try very hard to keep from seeing things but its hard. We watch hockey, we watched the game Wednesday and after a very touching national anthem they rolled photos. By the time you get the remote to change channel he's seen stuff. You walk my a newspaper stand there are pictures. His older brother is 9, we have told him more. I need him to hear from me, then the school yard. One of the victims is from our hometown where he still goes to day care and both grandparents live, you can't drive by without seeing news crews. Oh look mommy tv people. We don't tell him why they are there and we told oldest to keep his mouth shut. Plus DH and I are different. it rocks you. I had to put on my brave face and go back to work in Boston Wednesday. My office is 1.5 away from the site and pretty much low police presense except at train stations but it just feels different. We had no regular broadcast tv for over 30 hours it was hard to escape. Thank God for cable and on demand and DVRs so then DH and I getting most our news on line and hard to filter and so many images out there.

My little one just seems on edge. he's been whinny and clingy sleep issues. Don't know if he is feeding off us. I'm trying my best but when you wake up and everything is on lockdown its hard. People talk as much as I try I can't keep him in a bubble I can't. I know he doesn't understand what's going on. He had a nightmare ast night about a bug. He had an issue in the car with my dad over a bug and again at lunch over a bug. Could be coincidence could be he just knows something bad happened just not what and this is processing...

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Fri, 04-19-2013 - 2:03pm

Even if kids this age don't get what's happening, they do sense when their parents are on edge. I think the only thing you can do is to tell him that you are protecting him, that the cops on the street and the helicopters overhead are protecting him, and that there are a lot of helpers around to keep people safe.

My youngest was 4 when 9/11 happened, and he did see the 2nd plane crash into the tower on TV. I shut it off right away but for the next few weeks, he would build blocks into a tower and then crash into them with a toy plane. Every time he did this, I would just say stuff like, "You're copying what you saw on TV, aren't you?" just so he'd know it was okay to process it this way and to talk about it.

The evening after 9/11, I did tell my kids what happened in a very matter of fact way (my DD was in first grade and very perceptive and sensitive, so I knew it would be worse if I didn't.) Your son also sounds like my DD, so you might want to tell him that some bad guys hurt some people, and now the police are looking for them and keeping all of us safe.

FWIW, my kids are freaked out, too. They're in private school, so they did have school today, but my 17 yo just called me and told me everyone was on edge and starting to freak out until they catch this guy. (We're two towns away from the lockdown area.) I think the best thing we can do is talk about it at an age appropriate level, just so they know that the adults in their lives are not keeping any secrets.

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-12-2003
Sat, 04-20-2013 - 8:09am

Well lets just add to the stress yesterday, our lights went out. Transformer blow, totally unrelated but the kids freaked out. But they would have freaked if we didn't have the other issue. We all slept better last after they caught him, so hopefully we can all move on with some healing. Will see if his whinny/clingy behavior improves. Also a time for change for him. He's starting Tball, his brother had surgery (nothing major but he got pretty freaking seeing him in hospital) and he starts kindy in the fall and we have been prepping so sure thats all playing a roll. But we have know started such an intense fear of bugs he hid upstairs for HOURS because there was an ant in the kitchen. He took a MUCH needed LONG nap too. Think we all just need a vacation

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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2008
Thu, 04-25-2013 - 8:06am

I just wanted to offer you big HUGS.  I've never had to explain anything like this to my 4 year old so I'm not sure how I would handle it.  How's he doing now? How is your entire family coping?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-12-2003
Fri, 04-26-2013 - 12:43pm

he is doing better. helps we have been running around like crazy with older DS baseball so I only watch news in the AM and mostly for weather. I am honestly tired of it, now that they have the guy they are giving TOO much attention to him IMO. They do cover stories of victims but spread out over hours of news (just general issues with news coverage here but thats another vent) Oh and it was a pressure cooker they used for the bombs and soem news station posts a picture of him and behind him is a stove with a pot that looks a LOT like a pressure cooker in back (like I said issues with the news these days)

Anyway taking him into the city tomorrow. Many business were closed for over a week and they are hurting and when I was a little girl I always went in there with my parents so taking him to breakfast to a coffee shop we used to go to. Then some shopping to help the local economy some.

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