Re-traumatization from the Florida school shooting

Last week, the devastating shooting at the school in Parkland, Florida, reminded us that traumatic events continue no matter how much we try to stay away from them. While the news itself might not be traumatic, being a witness to it can, which many news channels unwittingly present opportunity for by broadcasting video of the actual event. A local news station showed one such video, and this is what I wrote them:
Hi, First of all, thank you for broadcasting relevant news on [sic] not dwelling on the same issues over and over again. I just want to bring up a problem that might not be beneficial to some of your viewers, especially some veterans and others who have PTSD, like myself. Last week, the report on the Florida shooting showed a video from a student's phone. In it was a body, probably dead. Please be more sensitive about showing imagery like this as it can be re-traumatizing for those with PTSD as it was for me. For those with PTSD, re-traumatization can have detrimental effects on cognition and memory and can take time to heal. Anything showing a dead body in the midst of a traumatic event should have a warning before showing it. Please share more good news, if there is any. Thank you.

I thought I was well enough to watch the news, but obviously this is a reason why those of us with PTSD are advised not to watch it. It may benefit us all for each of us to take steps to actively defend our right to safety and protection by writing letters and messages to the media and companies to bring awareness about PTSD. Besides, with all the of the traumatic events that occur, the number of PTSD patients is rising.


Comments

  • I just realized how impersonal this post was. A week later, I'm having trouble reading and doing homework. I had to ask for an extension from instructors as a result.
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