Watching Disasters

effect more than people think it does.  Every where on the internet and TV are pictures of the disaster of Hurricane Harvey.  I cannot even comprehend getting over 3 feet of water in 24 hours with more to come.  The VA (Veterans Administration) posted on their Facebook a link to their disaster information.  https://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/treatment/therapy-med/disaster_mental_health_treatment.asp  and on the page is another link to a PDF file designed to be hand out to people.  I scanned through it.  Check it out for practical ideas on coping with disasters.

Psychological First Aid (PFA) https://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/manuals/manual-pdf/pfa/PFA_2ndEditionwithappendices.pdf

https://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/manuals/manual-pdf/pfa/PFA_Appx_E_handouts.pdf

I do like their list of Do’s

Do . . .
•Decide carefully whom to talk to
      (I agree.  Not everyone is supportive and/or helpful during a disaster.  Some people make matters worse or want you to comfort them.)
•Start by talking about practical things
      (It is a good idea to start with concrete doable issues.  Then move to the emotional and complex.)
•Ask others if it’s a good time to talk
       (Just because I am ready to talk doesn’t mean the other person is ready to talk.)
•Decide ahead of time what you want to discuss
      (When I was in counseling and for conversations with bosses or sometime friends I actually write an outline of what needs to be covered.  I plan some conversations that need to address tough issues.)
•Let others know you need to talk or just to be with them
       (Being in the same room with someone needs to be expressed, I have to remind myself that people cannot read my mind.  I need to tell people what I need at the time.)
•Tell others you appreciate them listening
        (Thank a person that is willing to listen.  Gratitude for support goes along way to building relationships.)
•Choose the right time and place
        (Just before dinner or in the middle of an argument is not the time or place…really make an appointment to talk about major stuff.)
•Talk about painful thoughts and feelings when you’re ready
        (First figure out what you are feeling.  I had to pay a counselor to get someone that I could do a brain dump.  More than once he threatened to raise his fee….he earned every penny.)
•Tell others what you need or how they could help—one main thing that would help you right now
       (I believe this is rephrasing the other person does not read your mind.  I also learned that I can accept what they offer.  Refusing help tends to make the other person feel useless and rejected.  I also learned when offering help to have something in mind and offer a suggestion.  Feeling overwhelmed it is hard to think of what needs to be done.  For me sometimes praying for me makes a huge difference.)
Everyone faces tough times sometimes.  These articles have fairly good suggestions.

 

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