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Here’s How You Can Offer Help to Your Loved One To Deal With a Traumatic Event

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It can be quite difficult to understand how to help your loved ones after they have faced a distressing and traumatic event. It is only natural to feel like protecting the person from further hurt or distress and you would want to make them feel loved. However, the first and most important step is to accept what has happened. The impact of trauma can be long-lasting, and far-reaching, and may affect their ability to function. It is important to remember that their pain will not disappear overnight. It is a gradual process that will need time, rest, and appropriate support and help to get through it.

Here are a few ways you can offer them help:

  1. Always ask the person who has experienced trauma about what you can do to support them. Spend time with the person and make them feel that you are available for them. Human contact can be reassuring for them during this time.
  2. Their feelings, anxiety, and stress may be heightened after the trauma. Do not take words to heart. Emotional outbursts may be common during this time. And instead of reacting, try to acknowledge the fact that they had an extremely distressing experience. Reassure them that their reaction is valid and normal.
  3. Apart from emotional support, you can help them out with their housework, like cooking, re-stocking their grocery items, etc.
  4. Let the person talk about the incident. Be patient and hear them out. However, do not push the person to talk about it if they become visibly upset. Let them know that you are there for them no matter what and are there to listen whenever they feel the need to talk.
  5. They may feel that you will not be able to understand what they are feeling and may shut you out. In those cases, make sure they do not isolate themselves and talk to someone else if not you.
  6. If there is some important decision to be made, talk to them and inform them about their options. But do not make the decision on their behalf. You may suggest waiting for a little longer.
  7. Avoid saying “move on”, “get over it”, or “look on the bright side”. Avoid impatience and judgment or opinions or personal feelings. Instead, make them feel accepted.
  8. You may try to get the person involved in physical activity such as walking or swimming. These light exercises will help them relax a bit, reduce muscle tension and help them fall asleep.

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