BOZEMAN - Recovering after a traumatic event, like a natural disaster, is something that clinical social worker, Anna Hamzehpour, has been discussing with a few of her families and patients following the flood.
“It’s scary, it’s grief,” Hamzehpour said, “It’s going back to the basics, when anything gets hard we teach ourselves to do the simple things, maybe that’s just getting out of bed, taking a shower, trying to create a routine,”
For community members, doing specific things like asking if someone needs dinner, or a place to stay, asking and offering that to someone. Hamzehpour also says that people in trauma or grief may not know exactly what they need, so offering specific things may assist.
Hamzehpour also notes that grief affects people in different ways, and can come about due to traumatic events. Those that lost their homes may be experiencing the shock, but also their neighbor whose home is intact.
“If you bring up feelings of grief or loss that we’ve experienced in the past, even if it’s a different traumatic event of a different natural disaster. You can bring up those feelings of loss to you,” Hamzehpour.
For children, Hamzehpour says that the flood may be their first experience with grief and trauma in the world.
“Think about, we all have these bubbles of safety, and at some point, they start to get impacted and we realize that bad things can happen in the world, scary things can happen,” Hamzehpour said.
For those in rural areas that may think they don’t have access to someone to talk to, Hamzehpour recommends reaching out to their primary care provider to see more options, such as telehealth.