Holiday Crisis Intervention

By: Jillian Risberg Email
By: Jillian Risberg Email

"Holidays you think a lot of memories, family, loved ones; you want to make things work," says Emily Larkins, executive director of the Family Crisis Intervention Center in Parkersburg.

Sometimes that's not the answer when it comes to preventing a crisis.

"That's not always the best idea -- so we can see where violence will rise, during or after the holidays a lot of times," says Larkins.

Officials suggest establishing places to turn and people who can help before things turn angry.

"When we talk about crisis intervention, obviously we are talking about something they need assistance (with) immediately," Larkins said. "So we need to talk about how to do some safety planning to keep them safe in their environment and their situation."

Anything can tip off a crisis and money is a breaking point for many.

"During the holidays, especially with the amount of unemployment and the economy the way it is, lots of times there will be discussions started over how much money can be spent or if there isn't any money that can be spent," says Sharon Lynch, administrative director and human resources manager at the Family Crisis Intervention Center.

Addictive behavior often follows.

"A lot of times people will turn to drinking or doing drugs, which then leads to the violence," Lynch says.

Holiday time is a tough time, but don't feel the need to fix things, just take care of yourself.

"If they get into a situation at home and they need to leave, of course they can call 911, call law enforcement, they're available... or call our 24-hour hotline so we can walk them through whatever it is that they need," Larkins says.

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