Appeared in GoodTherapy.org 4/22/13
Disasters often have a human component, including New York’s World Trade Center on 9/11 , the death of a teenager following misuse of alcohol , mass shootings , and, in the day before the writing of this article, the explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon . Elsewhere, you can read about many themes that relate to dealing with a disaster, such as being prepared , responding to a crisis , dealing with the broader impact of the disaster , speaking to children , recovering from the damage , and living in the world after a disaster .
These all provide things for therapists to be on the lookout for or even to actively explore. These explorations are appropriate in different ways, regardless of whether the person was a primary victim or near-victim of the disaster, connected to such a person, or just someone who has learned of the event through media or social circles. Exploring a person’s initial reactions to a disaster can provide insight into some dimensions of his or her spirituality.