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How to Support a Loved One After a School Shooting

In October, I received an awful, unasked for education on how to support a loved one after a mass shooting. Horribly, my family and I were the ones who needed support. This ~3 min ScaryMommy piece and ~15 min radio interview on KMOX share the Dos and Don'ts I learned, many which were told to me by fellow survivors.

In case you're pressed for time, or experiencing computer clicking fatigue, here's a shorthand version of that list:

1. Do find out what happened from others.

2. Don’t share “tragedy porn.”

3. Do bring food.

4. Don’t expect to stay.

5. Do send money.

6. Don’t gossip about how the money should be spent.

7. Do check in.

8. Don’t expect a response.

9. Do reach out weeks and months after the shooting.

10. Do step up to fight, even if gun violence has never touched your life directly.

I hate that an article/interview like this is even necessary, but it is. Mass shootings in the US are on the rise and school shootings have more than doubled in the past few years. There's a good chance you already know someone who has been directly impacted by this type of violence, and if tragedy strikes you or someone you love, you want to be prepared.

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