On the 10th Anniversary of 9/11: Turn Off the TV



This morning I did what I always try to do, start the day as gracefully as possible. I go through my morning routine with plenty of time to do a little yoga, have a healthy breakfast, maybe scan the headlines, pack my lunch and head for the office. Usually I have Morning Edition, the NPR news program, on in the background. Today I had to turn it off.

With the 10th anniversary of the attacks of 9/11/01 it is very hard to get away from the related stories in the media. It would appear like every news outlet in the country is competing with each other to find a fresh angle. This can be an exhausting, troubling, even traumatizing time of year. With the 10th anniversary, it’s as if the anxiety and stress of ten full years is being funneled down to this one date.

Do not hesitate to take care of yourself if it becomes too much. Some of us are born more sensitive to this kind of thing than others. There is nothing to apologize for. Some of us just have thin skins, like some of us have brown hair. If you do or live with someone who does, maybe turn off the radio or television. Give the newspapers and websites the day, or week, off. Read a novel, watch a movie, go for a walk, play with your dog. If you must watch TV mute the commercials and news breaks if you’ve had enough, because even if you’re watching something as innocuous as a re-run of Two and a Half Men, every other moment away from the program seems to be about 9/11 in some shape or form.

Pace your news exposure, use media portion control and be well. Choose your own more personal way to acknowledge the day. Does it make you a bad citizen if you need to step away from the tragic stories or the forced warnings that we must stay ever vigilant for the next 9/11? No, it makes you an emotionally responsible human being.

3 comments


  • SD

    Dr Aletta,

    Thank you for the great advice.

    2011/09/08
  • Amy Jo

    Thank you Elvira, I was hoping you’d post something about this. I feel bombarded and upset all over again. All of this does not change what happened.

    2011/09/09
  • Nekkel

    Thank you for this. You don’t know how much I needed this advice..

    2011/09/10

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