The Paddington Survivors Group Support Site

You may be offered debriefing soon after the event.

This is so that you can talk through your experiences with trained counsellors. This can certainly help you in processing your memories, so that you are less likely to develop PTSD.

Formal debriefing is most likely to take the form of critical incident stress debriefing (CISD). This may be arranged by a company involved with the disaster and it often consists a one-off three-hour, group therapy session for those involved.

However, there can be pitfalls. In this group debriefing you may listen to other peoples experiences and possibly compound your own trauma. You are also potentially re-exposed to your own traumatic events.

So what else might be available?

Well, in the days and weeks after the incident you will most likely be talking to your friends and family, and will recieve support from them. Each person's circumstances will vary, some will not feel that they can talk much, wheilst others may talk at great length. This is the natural way that people used in the past.

You may have access to one-to-one debriefing, where a trained counselor will tlak through the incident with you, going over it in some detail, helping you to process the experience properly in your mind.

In any case, there is a concensus that debriefing should take place sometime between 2 and 4 weeks after the event.