Tulsa Doctor Shares Advice On Coping With Anxiety About Shootings

A Tulsa doctor shared some advice for people who might be feeling anxious after two people were killed in random shootings on Tuesday.

Tuesday, April 18th 2023, 10:27 pm


Two people are dead after police said a man walked into a public library and shot a random man in the back of the head, then went to a nearby QuikTrip and shot a second, random victim in the back of the head.

This type of random shooting puts many people on edge. Doctor Stevan Lahr with Family and Childrens Services said when we hear more about crime, people become hyper-vigilant.

He has some advice for people who might be feeling anxious. Dr. Lahr said it’s important to remember that seeing this type of crime firsthand isn't a normal experience.

He said it's hard when it happens somewhere like a library where people feel safe.

With the number of shootings in the news, psychologists said it can seem like nowhere is safe.

"Used to be, there would be an event and then there would be a long time between something else that was maybe as traumatic or anxiety provoking. But if you watch the news, it's just every single day,” said Dr. Stevan Lahr, Medical Director of Family & Children's Services in Tulsa.

Victorielle Pearlman was shocked when she went to the library to work on homework and learned it was a crime scene.

"We're not safe anywhere. It's our job to make our environments as safe as possible,” said Victorielle.

Doctor Lahr said anxiety is a normal response to fear.

"People think they should be prepared for it, but I counter that with the thought, like, how awful of a life would it be if you just were prepared for these things all the time,” said Dr. Lahr.

He said exercise, sunshine, quality time with family and friends, deep breathing, and a media detox can help with anxiety.

"If you’re telling yourself, 'the sky is falling, the sky is falling.' Is the sky falling or is it just a feeling that it's falling? Feelings are a lot easier to manipulate than facts are,” said Dr. Lahr.

He said if you start isolating, avoiding places, you're not eating, and not sleeping, it's time to talk to a mental health professional.

"Bad things have always happened and they're always going to continue to happen,” said Dr. Lahr.

Dr. Lahr and Victorielle agree, you can't let fear stop you from living life.

"Life goes on and only can continue through us so let's continue to do our best,” said Victorielle.

The Tulsa library sent us a statement saying everyone at the library is deeply saddened by Tuesday's tragic events and Rudisill Regional library will be closed until further notice.


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