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How to talk to kids about riots at the U.S. Capitol

Prescott said talking to our kids can help them deal with and process emotions they aren’t familiar with.
Millions of Americans watched the events unfold at the U.S. Capitol on their televisions.
Millions of Americans watched the events unfold at the U.S. Capitol on their televisions.(WJHG/WECP)
Published: Jan. 12, 2021 at 5:40 PM EST
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Emotions have been high since the riot at the U.S Capitol last week.

With the inauguration just eight days away, there’s been even more talk of potential violence.

So, how do we talk to our kids about this?

Acadia Hospital Clinical Psychologist, Dr. David Prescott, says it’s an important discussion, especially if kids have seen the violence that’s happened.

Talking to our kids can help them deal with and process emotions they aren’t familiar with.

Prescott says talking about stressful and sometimes scary events with age-appropriate language can help kids feel safer.

Dr. David Prescott, Acadia Hospital Clinical Psychologist, “Ask your kid what they know and what they’re thinking about it. And, then, I tell parents, ‘bite your tongue.’ Usually, it’s really interesting if you just listen carefully to what your kid is thinking and what they have to say. A lot of times that will guide you.”

Prescott says you should pick a quiet time to talk, like on a walk or doing an activity together.

Listen, be honest, and make sure to reassure them that you will do everything you can to protect them.

If you feel the emotional toll is taking over your life or your child’s life, don’t hesitate to reach out for professional help.

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