How to Talk to You Your Children About the Ukraine and Other Difficult Current Events
One of the jobs as a parent or guardian is to keep our children accurately informed. They might overhear the news, see it on social media or hear family and friends speaking about the Russian attack on the Ukraine. Depending on the age of your child and their maturity level, there are different ways to approach the topic of talking to them about the war, as well as other difficult current events happening around the world.
If your children are very young, they may not have heard about what is going on yet – so it’s up to the parent or guardian to decide how much they should know. Remember - it’s better that they hear it from you, and not from another peer at school. For a young child, explaining war in general terms can help. You can explain that disagreements between countries can cause fighting, without having to go into extreme detail. Showing them a map or a globe and pointing out the countries involved can also help. Let them know that you’re available to answer any questions they may have.
For older children who have most likely seen or hear about it on the TV or internet already, you can ask them if they have questions and allow them to lead the discussion on how they feel and what they’d like to know. Explain that all feelings they have are valid and normal, and encourage them to come to you if they are feeling anxious, sad, scared or angry about the situation.
Consider limiting the media on the TV during the day, especially in homes with younger children, and use only reliable sources for updated information.
Lastly, remember to remind your children about how much good is happening in the world at this current moment. A favorite news site that shares news about the good in life is www.thegoodnewsmovement.com, and it’s great for adults and children of all different ages. You can choose a different “good news” article to start and end each day so your children can know about the positive things that are happening.