For Family Members & Friends

  • Listen carefully.
  • Spend time with the traumatized person.
  • Offer your assistance and a listening ear if (s)he has not asked for help.
  • Reassure him that he is safe.
  • Help him with everyday tasks like cleaning, cooking, caring for the family, minding children.
  • Give him some private time.
  • Don’t take his anger or other feelings personally.
  • Don’t tell him that he is “lucky it wasn’t worse;” a traumatized person is not consoled by those statements. Instead, tell him that you are sorry such an event has occurred and you want to understand and assist him.

 International Critical Incident Stress Foundation, Inc. 2001 All Rights Reserved.

Review Moving Forward After Trauma for insights about normal reactions and when professional help is needed. There is no time limit for recovery; do not expect he ‘should be over it by now.’