NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Ariana Grande show — attended by kids as young as 5-years-old — became an easy terrorist target.
With around the clock information coming out about the tragedy — what do parents say to their inquiring children?
Coral Long was at the concert with her daughter Robin.
“She’s just been crying, why do these things happen to people? Why do they keep doing this to people? She’s just worried that they’re going to come to her school,” she said.
Sandra Wu said the attack in England hit too close to home in Garden City, Long Island. Her teenage daughter is a huge fan of the singer.
“She saw her last year, three times,” she told CBS2’s Emily Smith, “Twice at Madison Square Garden, once at Barclays.”
Dr. Jennifer Hartstein said if your child is at least 5-years-old you should talk to them about this tragedy.
“Just because you think you’re protecting them, doesn’t mean they aren’t seeing it at the pizza parlor or on a twitter feed,” she said.
The worst thing you can say to a frightened child according to Dr. Hartstein, is that there’s no reason to be scared.
“It’s important to say of course you’re scared, and we have no idea if that’s going to happen here,” she said.
At the same time it’s also a good idea to encourage kids to go places to face their fears.
“Recognize that this happened, but it doesn’t happen most of the other days and remind yourself that it’s isolated, and doesn’t happen most other places,” she said.
Richard Raimo said he’d allow his teenage daughter Lisa to go to a concert this summer, but not without talking to her first.
“I know there is security, and people there trained to work toward keeping people safe,” Lisa explained.
Dr. Hartstein said parents should help their children come up with a safety plan reminding them to look for exits at venues, and always be aware of their surroundings.
She added that one conversation might not be enough if kids are exposed to a lot of television and social media. Images can be more powerful than words, so finding out what your kids have seen and making sure they talk to someone about it is paramount.