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Children's coping program could help kids of divorce

During the throes of divorce, it is very common for children to develop anxiety and behavioral problems. After all, for kids, it may appear as if their entire world is falling apart. These feelings could manifest themselves in falling grades, backtalk to parents or random outbursts.

In light of these potential problems, a new program has been created to help children of Ohio divorces cope with the stress they feel. In fact, the acronym stands for Creating Opportunities for Personal Empowerment. It is geared towards helping kids deal with stress, anxiety and depression before they become serious problems. 

Its creator, Bernadette Melnyk, is the dean of Ohio State University's College of Nursing. She believes that the program teaches kids to turn negative thoughts into positive ones, so that they can improve how they feel about themselves and how they respond to others.

This approach is important because the common link between school shootings around the country is that the perpetrator had some type of deep-seeded resentment or festering anger ostensibly based on a traumatic event in their lives. It could be physical or sexual abuse, or the trauma associated with a parent abruptly leaving their lives.

In explaining her program to the Columbus Dispatch, she noted that most of the national debate has focused on gun control instead of giving kids tools to cope with difficult situations before turning to violence.

As such, understanding the signs of stress and developing healthy coping mechanisms is just as important as knowing the benefits of arming school guards.

Source: Dispatch.com, Kids learning to cope with stress, May 28, 2013

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