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What to do when the news is keeping you up at night

I didn't sleep well last night. Not because my kids kept me up or because I was worried about some big presentation at work. I kept going over and over in my head the working mom of two kids (my own children's ages: 5 and 2) who drove her minivan the wrong way on to a parkway. Not only did she die, but so did her 2-year-old daughter and her brother's 3 only children, whom she was driving home. The crash was horrific, fiery. I was arguing with my husband late last night about how easy it would be to get distracted with 5 kids in the car. He disagreed. The problem with news like this is it's so easy to see yourself in a horrific situation like this. I also think about the brother's young girls and him and his wife, now childless. My heart goes out to them. It's one thing to have empathy, though, someone once told me, and it's another thing to let it consume your life. For me, it's always been hard to separate myself from news stories like this.

One daily change: Experts recommend that we stop watching the news or reading the papers in the evenings before bed (say no to late-night news)--as it will stress you out, triggering sleeplessness. Relegate the news to the morning or daytime hours, when you can empathize or mourn (as I have been doing in this case) without it leaving you bleary-eyed.

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