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Do you know what trigger warnings are? These 5 insightful illustrations explain.

Trigger warnings help us gain control over our emotional reactions.

You know the feeling when you're going about your day and you're suddenly struck with a deep pang of emotion?

Something you saw, heard, or witnessed subconsciously took you back to a traumatic event you experienced. That's a trigger.

For some people, these triggers can bring about unpleasant or even harmful emotions.


That's why it's important to be aware of how discussing certain issues might not just affect us, but also those around us.

Cartoonist and illustrator Madeleine Slade created this incredibly insightful comic detailing what trigger warnings are based on her personal experience. Not only is it brave, it's also important to understanding and being mindful of others sensitivities.

These comics explain how trigger warnings can help someone avoid a personal, emotional crisis:

Illustrations by M. Slade, featured with permission.

Illustrations by M. Slade, featured with permission.

Illustrations by M. Slade, featured with permission.

Illustrations by M. Slade, featured with permission.

Illustrations by M. Slade, featured with permission.

The 2016 presidential election will be triggering for people you know and love and maybe even for you personally.

If you're emotionally invested and can't control your feelings while talking politics, know you can leave the conversation before it turns into something damaging.

Stepping away can save you the anxiety of not knowing what to do because you're uncomfortable with the situation. Removing yourself from those triggering talks will help you remain focused, relaxed, and — most importantly — healthy.

An NPR survey recently found half of college professors have used trigger warnings before. The National Coalition Against Censorship explains that "in many cases, the request for trigger warnings comes from students themselves." They help students feel that they're in a safe space.

Whether you feel you need trigger warnings or not, it's important to understand what they are.

They're a way we can better understand each other. They help establish awareness of others and their emotions while discussing sensitive subjects. Trigger warnings are act of empathy.

Give your friends a heads up if you need trigger warnings, too. Kindly remind them how they help you stay healthy.

We can't control the things around us, but we can control our reactions to them. And that is always worth discussing.

Joy

Man uses TikTok to offer 'dinner with dad' to any kid that needs one, even adult ones

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud.

Come for the food, stay for the wholesomeness.

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud. His TikTok channel is dedicated to giving people intimate conversations they might long to have with their own father, but can’t. The most popular is his “Dinner With Dad” segment.

The concept is simple: Clayton, aka Dad, always sets down two plates of food. He always tells you what’s for dinner. He always blesses the food. He always checks in with how you’re doing.

I stress the stability here, because as someone who grew up with a less-than-stable relationship with their parents, it stood out immediately. I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at Clayton’s consistency. I also noticed the immediate emotional connection created just by being asked, “How was your day?” According to relationship coach and couples counselor Don Olund, these two elements—stability and connection—are fundamental cravings that children have of their parents. Perhaps we never really stop needing it from them.


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Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy asked his Senate colleagues the questions millions of Americans have after a mass shooting.

Another school shooting. Another mass murder of innocent children. They were elementary school kids this time. There were 18 children killed—so far—this time.

The fact that I can say "this time" is enraging, but that's the routine nature of mass shootings in the U.S. It happened in Texas this time. At least three adults were killed this time. The shooter was a teenager this time.

The details this time may be different than the last time and the time before that, and the time before that, and the time before that. But there's one thing all mass shootings have in common. No, it's not mental illness. It's not racism or misogyny or religious extremism. It's not bad parenting or violent video games or lack of religion.

Some of those things have been factors in some shootings, but the single common denominator in every mass shooting is guns. That's not a secret. It's not controversial. It's fact. The only thing all mass shootings have in common is guns.

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Joy

Meet Eva, the hero dog who risked her life saving her owner from a mountain lion

Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva when a mountain lion suddenly appeared.

Photo by Didssph on Unsplash

A sweet face and fierce loyalty: Belgian Malinois defends owner.

The Belgian Malinois is a special breed of dog. It's highly intelligent, extremely athletic and needs a ton of interaction. While these attributes make the Belgian Malinois the perfect dog for police and military work, they can be a bit of a handful as a typical pet.

As Belgian Malinois owner Erin Wilson jokingly told NPR, they’re basically "a German shepherd on steroids or crack or cocaine.”

It was her Malinois Eva’s natural drive, however, that ended up saving Wilson’s life.

According to a news release from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva slightly ahead of her when a mountain lion suddenly appeared and swiped Wilson across the left shoulder. She quickly yelled Eva’s name and the dog’s instincts kicked in immediately. Eva rushed in to defend her owner.

It wasn’t long, though, before the mountain lion won the upper hand, much to Wilson’s horror.

She told TODAY, “They fought for a couple seconds, and then I heard her start crying. That’s when the cat latched on to her skull.”

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