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Mental health expert discusses how to navigate conversations about Texas shooting

Discussions are growing on how to navigate conversations with loved ones following Tuesday’s deadly school shooting in Texas.
Published: May. 25, 2022 at 7:10 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Many of us are facing difficult conversations at work and at home following Tuesday’s deadly school shooting in Texas.

Western Mass News spoke with one mental health expert who told us that it is important to give people the space they need to express how they are feeling following this horrific tragedy.

Discussions are growing on how to navigate conversations with loved ones following Tuesday’s deadly school shooting in Texas.

Director of Medical Services at the Center of Human Development, Dr. Jalil Johnson, told Western Mass News that it is important to allow each other time to express how they are feeling when they are ready.

“To not minimize anyone’s experience,” Dr. Johnson explained. “Some people feel about this or hear about this differently than others, so I think it’s always important to validate how people are feeling and how they are responding or reacting.”

Dr. Johnson said mass shootings are hard to learn and talk about, but not expressing your emotions can have further consequences down the line.

“It’s important to express how you are feeling, whether that be to loved ones or to professionals so that you don’t bottle it up and inadvertently cause some other type of problems for yourself or for others,” he said.

In addition, Dr. Johnson told us that if you see a friend or family member having a hard time processing the emotions following the school shooting, please help them get access to mental health resources.

“If you have a family member or a loved one who you see may be struggling or may have thoughts and ideas that can be harmful to themselves or to other people, it is very important to try to get access to care as soon as possible,” he said.

Dr. Johnson says CHD provides many resources to those in need. You can find more information on their website.