First Person: Father of Nine Talks to the Kids About the Sandy Hook Tradegy

How Parents Talk With Their Kids About the Newtown Shooting and Other Violence

Yahoo Contributor Network
First Person: Father of Nine Talks to the Kids About the Sandy Hook Tradegy

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Children and those who tried to save them gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School

How do we talk to our children about the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School? What conversations did we have with them in the days after the Newtown shooting? Yahoo News asked parents to share their personal stories and perspectives.

FIRST PERSON | I am a father of nine children from the small town of Belvidere, Ill. My children range in age from 3 to 17 years old. The recent tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary raised a lot of questions from my children about their safety.

It was very hard for me to explain to my children how this could happen in a place where they are supposed to be safe: school. Luckily, being from a small town, our school district wasted no time in contacting parents and letting them know that local police were upgrading patrols and new safety measures would be in place very soon, and this helped ease our children's fears.

They were scared. Some of my children expressed that they were afraid, and my older children said they still feel safe, even after recent events. Our family's faith in God has been a key factor in helping ease the pain, and all of our children expressed this also.

My 6-year-old daughter said, "Dad just pray. God will listen." So our family continues to pray for the families of the victims, but after watching these events unfold on TV, it makes a parent feel helpless when our most treasured gifts get on that school bus. I cannot imagine the heartache of losing a child, spouse, or friend at the hands of a madman.

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