Helping Kids Make Sense of Boston

By Rachel McNeill - Anchor

HOUSTON - As events continue to unfold in Boston, more and more children and teens are hearing the horrible details and wondering like many of us, how and why this could happen.

From television to newspapers to social media, we're all being g flooded with gruesome details about the explosions in Boston.

Experts say when it comes to our kids, there is a way to protect them from the worst information while maintaining open, honest communication.

The images out of Boston are hard to forget. The injuries horrific.

So when children come to you with questions, how do we explain the unexplainable?

Amy Birchill Lavergne is the Executive Director of the Nick Finnegan Counseling Center in Southwest Houston.

She said, "The first thing I would encourage a parent to say is, 'What do you know already?'"

She said that with older children and teens, parents can clear up any misconceptions about the attack and try to put it in context.

She explained, "What you want to do is minimize the fear that it's happening in their world right there because that's where kids go with this. Am I safe in my town, in my school, in my home?"

Experts say age is the most important factor in deciding how to talk with our children.

Preschool and early elementary should really be shielded from the gory details.

iVillage Chief Correspondent and mom of two Kelly Wallace said, "Keep the newspapers covers face down. Don't put the television on."

She added that showing kids of all ages the silver lining in all this may also help.

She explained, "I wrote a piece about how I wish I could really talk to my girls about how people ran towards the sites of the explosions to help even though they could face danger themselves. How joggers continued running, not running for their lives, but to donate blood. So there's a lot of good here."

Copyright 2013 by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.