1. Call things by their proper names: what happened to you, or what you witnessed--was it scary, aggressive, inhumane, frightening, cruel? Was it violent? Did you have a sense of loss of control?
2. Talk to those you trust, those who understand, those who have witnessed what you have witnessed, those with whom it is safe. Talk it out. Ask the listener for what you really need in this conversation: silent presence, emotional feedback, shared experiences, supportive tactile contact, a request for help and practical advice, informational support, help with referring to the subject matter experts?
4. Allowing yourself to feel is harder than it sounds. Emotions are a marker of what is happening to us in contact with the outside world, an opportunity to understand what our needs in that contact are not being met. Emotions can be intense, but not destructive. Cry if you want to cry, stomp your feet if you are angry, yearn for a lost sense of security. Whatever the feelings, ask yourself what could be supportive for you right now if you feel (insert a description of your emotional state)?