Sep 23, 2010 12:38 AM by John Romero

Talking to kids about suicide

The news of Bronco wide receiver Kenny McKinley's suicide sent a shockwave through the community. Police reports say McKinley was depressed and even spoke of killing himself. It's tough to understand for anyone, especially kids. Clinical psychologist, Dr. Anne Brtek says it's important to talk to your children when things like this happen. "You explain to the child that this individual who they so looked up to and admired so much is a human being as well." she explains.

It may not be easy but it's important that your child realizes what depression is. Asking them questions is a good way to get them to open up. "The thing that will help them the most is talking about it and asking them questions. What did you feel about this?" explains Dr. Brtek, "What were your thoughts about it?"

Most importantly you should let your child know that it's ok to be open with their feelings in any situation, good or bad. "The more you can encourage children to speak and communicate about their thoughts and feelings, the healthier they'll be." explains Dr. Brtek, "If they don't talk about it, it's going to affect them in the long run."



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