SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — From concerts to places of worship to school campuses and now festivals, mass shootings have become all too common in the United States. Just this weekend alone, at least eight people were killed and almost 50 injured in eight shootings across the country.
The pictures and stories can be hard to watch and hear.
“We were listening to CNN last night and we were going to listen to what the father says about the death of his 6-year-old son, and I just said ‘I can’t listen to this.’ I turned off my radio off. So yeah, we’re really tired of it,” said Marysville resident Pamela Johnson.
The traumatic images, the sounds, the terror on people’s faces are certainly having a real impact on society as a whole.
“Our hearts are broken every time we hear this. From movie theater shooting, to Las Vegas. It goes on and on and on,” said Johnson.
It may not be a clinical term, but the phrase “mass shooting fatigue,” resonates with some Sacramento area folks seeing these rampages play out far too often.
“We’re numbing ourselves to it, and not allowing ourselves to feel,” said Sacramento mental health professional Trevor Gjeltena.
Gjeltena says people are having difficulty just watching it on television, and in a way, some are going into survival mode.
“Where we change the channel, we have another beer, we tune out a little more cause we don’t want whatever it is to impact our psyche, at the same time it’s something that’s taking a deeper toll,” said Gjeltena.
“I don’t think it should go unreported, but sometimes people need to shut it off,” said Heather Woodford, a licensed clinical social worker.
Gjeltena, who works closely with kids, says there’s a broader impact.
“Parents aren’t letting kids out like they used to, they’re sheltering them at home more and how that impacts society,” he said.
He adds that in schools, it’s something that’s on the consciousness of every student these days.
“It’s not just oh it’s a fire drill… it’s ‘how do I check in with my friends afterwards, how do I figure out who’s safe?'” said Gjetena.
Johnson says her tuning out is not out of empathy, in fact, the opposite. She’s frustrated and heartbroken that more is not being done.
She says the hope is to take this tragedy and turn it into action and change.