Parents, health care workers, teachers, people with big hearts, … almost everyone experiences compassion fatigue at some point in their lives. Especially with everything that’s going on in our community at the moment, it’s not surprising that many people are experiencing this right now. Today, Dayna Kumar is joining me to talk about this and how we can take care of the caretakers in our lives and communities.

What is compassion fatigue?

Compassion fatigue is the stress that people experience from helping or wanting to help others who are experiencing trauma or suffering.

Looking at both mine and Dayna’s community and everything that’s been going on recently, it’s safe to say that people are having a hard time. Their nervous system is always charged and people are feeling scared.

A lot of parents feel tasked with taking care of their community, family, themselves, and the fear and sadness that we have while also trying to create some holiday magic and rituals and routines for our kids.

“Hard things happen and we still have to take care
of the people around us when hard things happen”
– Amanda Sovik-Johnston

I’m happy to say the beautiful thesis of this whole episode is that the reason we experience decision fatigue is because we have love and empathy for other people. That doesn’t change the fact that it can leave us grumpy, exhausted, worried and even numb. So how can we take care of ourselves and other caretakers? We discuss this and much more in today’s episode of Active & Connected Families.

In this episode on taking care after trauma, we cover:

  • How is trauma affecting people?;
  • Burnout: What does it look like?;
  • What is compassion fatigue and how do people experience it?;
  • Signs and symptoms of compassion fatigue;
  • Strategies to hold space;
  • And so much more!

You can find our podcast Active and Connected Families wherever you listen to your podcasts, or easily click the links below to listen:

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More about Virginia Family Therapy

Virginia Family Therapy is a mental health practice serving individuals, families, and our community. VFT is designed to help people at all stages and from all walks of life by offering therapists and physicians with diverse backgrounds and specialties via face-to-face, walk-and-talk, and telemedicine appointments. Throughout, we are committed to developing strengths-based, authentic, and long-lasting relationships with you and your children. We hope to provide you with the support and insight you need to help your family navigate life’s hard times and joys.

Are you or your child struggling with mental health? We have a team of psychologists and psychiatrists who can help you out. You can learn more about our practice or contact us here.

More about Dayna Kumar LPC

Dayna specializes in children, teens, families, and adults struggling with issues related to adoption, anxiety, depression, trauma, grief, and/or difficulties in their relationships. She enjoys working with families who are experiencing more normative challenges, such as managing issues related to the pandemic, as well as individuals/families who have experienced significant trauma and/or grief.

Dayna lives in Lynchburg with her husband and two young sons, one biological and one adopted from India. You can see her pushing a stroller around town or running the streets preparing for a half marathon. She provides face-to-face sessions in Virginia Family Therapy’s Lynchburg office and teletherapy across Virginia. She offers both traditional hour long sessions as well as multi-hour intensive sessions for those who live across the state. Dayna can be reached directly at

You can learn more about Dayna here.

Resources and links mentioned in this episode

Disclaimer: Please remember we are real live therapists, however this is a podcast and is not considered a therapy session. Not only because there is no co-pay but also because we can’t speak to your individual experiences. We are here to help you keep raising healthy kids. And remember, if you are an imperfect parent, we are right there with you. If you or someone you love is in immediate danger, please call your local crisis hotline or go to your nearest emergency room.

Fostering growth through connection.

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