How to Cope With Race-Based Trauma


From Teen Vogue: “As a mental health professional, I can’t help but think how harmful it is to continue to witness and read about the deaths of those who are like you. Racism is not good for our mental health, and studies have shown an association between racism and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Now, we have the research to support what many of us already know — that viewing police killings or distressing news towards one’s racial-ethnic group is connected to worsened mental health. Yes, videos create awareness. However, we have to be mindful about the negative mental health impact of seeing a senseless killing play out right in front of our eyes.”

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  1. Generally good advice except the part about the invite into “mental health” circles.
    In fact, “research” suggests that when trauma happens in schools, such as threats or a shooting, it has not been helpful for teenagers to be reminded of and coached through their upsets.
    By making it a “mental health” issue, it suggests that disturbed feelings are a “mental problem” and should be therapied.
    Suggesting to teenagers that they should talk about their angst and upsets to friends and family or whoever they feel a connection to is a good alternative. The cure through life’s problems does not lie in the hands of “therapists” but can be a joint effort of community.

    Perhaps “therapists” could help communities in general, in a no nonsense kind of way, by not using the rationale of such help, as being “mental help”

    If someone is distressed or upset, take them to the beach, a walk, a game, etc etc and see if they still want to talk about their “mental health”. Use that hour to DO something with someone instead of rehashing.

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