How to Talk to Children About Mass Shootings

Washington, DC, May 24, 2022  – The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) is dedicated to helping children and families around the globe.

The horrific details of yesterday’s mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas are still emerging. As an association dedicated to protecting the health of children everywhere, we are deeply saddened by the senseless act of violence that has taken so many innocent lives and affected so many more.

For those caught up in the violence and attacks, it’s unimaginable and for those looking on from afar, the feelings of fear and helplessness can be overwhelming. For children, who have less of an idea of what is going on, this can be even more terrifying.

In hopes of helping families and children cope with violence and violent images, AACAP compiled the following resources:

These resources are a starting point for addressing trauma and are not intended to serve as a substitute for psychiatric treatment or counseling. Our resources were created for those coping with loss and grief, and for those seeking to foster a dialogue with their children about regional, national, and international news events. If you would like to speak to an expert, please reach out to the co-chairs of AACAP’s Disaster & Trauma Issues Committee:


The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry promotes the healthy development of children, adolescents, and families through advocacy, education, and research. Child and adolescent psychiatrists are the leading physician authority on children’s mental health. For more information, please visit