Resources to help you cope with traumatic events

The horrific mass shooting that took place Sunday night in Las Vegas has deeply affected all of us. This senseless, heartbreaking event may evoke feelings of fear and anxiety, or bring back thoughts associated with other tragedies that have happened closer to home.

King County Making Life Easier is providing several resources to help you and your family cope with your emotional reactions to this tragedy. If you need immediate support, or specific resources, please call the King County Making Life Easier program at 1-888-874-7290.

The following links are curated articles provided as starting points to help you understand and navigate through the emotional impact of this tragedy.

When something tragic like this happens, it’s normal to have stress reactions. The severity of your reaction depends on the nature of the situation, your involvement in it, and how you are coping with other stressors in your life at the time of the incident.  Most stress reactions resolve within a few weeks, with good self-care and support from friends and family.

Common reactions to an extreme stressor include:

  • Physical reactionstightness in the throat or chest, trouble sleeping, lack of appetite, fatigue, headaches, lower back aches.
  • Emotions: sadness, irritability or anger, fear, anxiety, and guilt.
  • Thoughts: disbelief, inability to concentrate, confusion, difficulty with decision-making.
  • Behaviorsavoiding reminders of the event, withdrawing from others, increased use of alcohol, restlessness.

There are many ways to cope with the aftermath of a traumatic situation. Some that you may find helpful include:

  • Accept that the reactions you are experiencing are normal following a traumatic incident.
  • Take a break from the news when coverage is making you feel overwhelmed.
  • Keep a journal. Writing can be very healing. Write down your thoughts, fears, pain and despair.
  • Reach out to your support system. Find people who will listen to you, and comfort you. This could be friends, family, clergy, or a therapist.
  • Take care of yourself physically. Get 8 hours of sleep, eat balanced meals, drink plenty of water, and take walks outside.
  • Avoid alcohol and drugs not prescribed by your physician.
  • Remember to breathe.

If your reactions do not resolve within a few weeks, or if you are experiencing disturbing images or nightmares, call us for a referral to a qualified therapist experienced with trauma.

This tragic event is a reminder that all employees should be aware of their surroundings and potential threats in and around their workplace.

If you see anything or anyone that looks unusual or out of place, please call FMD Security at 206-296-5000. If it’s an emergency, call 9-1-1 first, then call FMD Security when you are able. We have also launched a new online security incident report form to report non-emergency incidents to the FMD Security Unit for possible follow-up. You can report incidents that happen at work or on your commute.

We also have a list of safety tips online. This information from the Seattle Police Department is designed to help you enhance your personal safety and avoid potential trouble. Want a walking buddy to or from work? Check out our Walkpool program.

Our first priority is your safety and security at work and we are continuing our efforts to ensure the safety of all employees and visitors to our facilities.