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The State We're In connects with people in Central Florida and the greater Tampa Bay region about issues that matter to you. From the coronavirus to special coverage of politics along the I-4 corridor, it’s a chance to hear your neighbors, and better understand their experience.The State We’re In is a collaboration of WUSF Public Media in Tampa and 90.7 WMFE in Orlando and is part of America Amplified, a national community engagement and reporting initiative supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.[Join Us On Facebook]

Child Psychologist Says Parents Should Have Honest Conversations With Kids About Pandemic

Host Matthew Peddie (on right) talks with Kimberly Renk, a UCF professor who specializes in child psychology (on left).
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WMFE and WUSF Public Media
Host Matthew Peddie (on right) talks with Kimberly Renk, a UCF professor who specializes in child psychology (on left).

Children of all ages are having a hard time processing how coronavirus has changed their lives.

Psychologist Kimberly Renk said parents can help kids organize those feelings. But the University of Central Florida professor said parents first need to assess how they're being affected by the pandemic.

“Am I having a struggle? Do I need to do anything for me to be more effective with my children?” Renk said. “And then take care of themselves first, and that then puts them in a safe place where they can then help their children manage whatever feelings they are having.”

Renk shared her advice Tuesday on The State We're In - a Facebook Live show from WUSF and WMFE in Orlando.

She said there's no playbook for parents dealing with the unprecedented situations brought on by coronavirus.

Parents should trust themselves, she said, because they know their children best and should have honest conversations about the pandemic that are appropriate to a child's age and understanding. 

To see the full conversation and more of her advice, click the link below. Also, visit The State We're In Facebook page.

This story is produced in partnership with America Amplified, an initiative using community engagement to inform local journalism. It is supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.