In 2001, we watched harrowing attacks on our nation as airplanes destined for California were hijacked by terrorists and crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania. For some, the horrific tragedies of September 11 are just as vivid today as they were over two decades ago, and for many, the trauma is still ongoing. The death toll continues to rise, even 22 years later – the New York City Fire Department just added 43 new names to its World Trade Center Memorial Wall commemorating firefighters, paramedics and civilian support staff members who died from illnesses related to the rescue and recovery efforts in the aftermath of the attacks.
We interviewed our own Senior Director of Training Beth Jenks, Ph.D., who explained the complexities surrounding those who still feel the reverberation of trauma. “It’s now mixed up with COVID, police violence, political stress, and other national and individual traumas. It’s more complicated. While 9/11 may trigger people, like the comic strip below, I think we are in a state of complex national trauma that people will experience differently.”
Jenks further explained that recalling the experience is expected and part of the healing process. Below are ways to help cope and help others.
- Trauma Reminders, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs
- Anxiety, sadness may increase on anniversary of a traumatic event, American Psychological Association
Ways to Observe September 11
Visit Pacific Clinics’ 9/11 Dedication in Arcadia
Located on Santa Anita Avenue, the dedication is visible to the public and honors those who lost their lives.
Livestream the 9/11 Commemoration Ceremony
The 9/11 Memorial and Museum has a resource library and will stream this year’s annual ceremony, starting at 5:40 am PST.
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum in New York invites everyone to, “honor those we lost and affirm the tremendous sense of community we felt in the aftermath of 9/11” with a message of remembrance and reflection.
Get involved with 9/11 Day, a nonprofit dedicated to turning a day of tragedy into a day of service. Their 9/11 National Day of Service events provide activities and good deeds.
Visit the History Channel’s website to learn more about the events that took place on this tragic day and its significance.
Listen to the podcast with the American Psychological Association and Roxanne Cohen Silver, Ph.D., who studied the collective impact of 9/11.