Am I Normal

 Reactions to Overwhelming Stressful Events

Most people have reactions to traumatic events or other overwhelming situations. These experiences may affect your ability to function and take care of yourself. Everyone reacts differently, based on personal experiences. Sometimes it appears that there is no reaction at all, sometimes the reaction is immediate, and sometimes reactions are delayed.


Common Reactions to a death, near death or overwhelming event are:

  • Thoughts: 
    Re-enacting the event over and over in your mind
  • Emotional reactions:
    Feeling stressed


    Feeling anxious
    Feeling overwhelmed
    Feeling numb
  • Physical reactions: 
    Trouble concentrating
  • Changes in Behaviors


    Increase in use of alcohol or drugs
    Sleep problems
    Increase in risk-taking 
    Change in appetite

 What Can I Do to Feel Better?

  • Get involved in activities that you can start and finish in one day
  • Eat healthy foods and get physical exercise
  • Talk openly with a friend or person you trust about your feelings
  • Spend time doing things you enjoy, even if this is hard
  • Support a friend – this is remarkably healing
  • Listen to music that makes you feel better

 When Do I Need to Get Additional Help?

  • If you continue to have trouble functioning normally, weeks or months after the events
  • When you have a friend who has these reactions and is not getting better
  • When you have thoughts of harming or killing yourself or someone else
  • If you are feeling overwhelmed or out of control
  • When you are not taking care of yourself

 Where Can I get help for suicidal ideation/thinking?

  • Parent, Friend of Family or Relative
  • School Guidance Counselor or Nurse
  • Pastor or another adult you trust
  • Call 911 or go to Emergency Department
  • Primary Care Physician / Behavioral Medicine (Counseling)


Columbia Valley Community Health

600 Orondo Ave.

Wenatchee, WA 98801



CVCH Express Care

900 Eastmont Ave.

East Wenatchee, WA 98802


CVCH Chelan

317 East Johnson

Chelan, WA 98816


        Confluence Health - Walk-in

820 N Chelan Ave

Wenatchee, WA 98801




  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255)