Post Storm Stress Takes Toll on Wethersfield Residents

If you take a drive through Wethersfield, you’ll find constant reminders of the tornado that hit the town almost 2 weeks ago. There’s piles of branches lining the streets and backyards that are leveled. 

Town leaders say the debris is part of the reason some resident can’t help but feel anxious and scared when a storm now hits the area.
“There were some pretty dramatic sights with trees landing on or in houses. That can be frightening for people,” said Nancy Stilwell, the director of youth & social services in Wethersfield.
Since then, the town has received dozens of phone calls from anxious residents. Who now fear black skies.
“I do look up at the sky and I think oh no, not rain again,” said Margaret Moore, of Wethersfield.
Town officials say many resident are experiencing something they call post-traumatic storm stress. It’s a very real condition for adults and children in the town.
“It’s scary because I’ve never gone through something like that before and it really freaked me out,” said 12-year-old Ryan McCarty.
Town leaders wanted to help and held a discussion at the Pitkin Community Center Thursday night. Counselors were on hand offering advice and ways for residents to cope with any fear and anxiety they may be experiencing.
“We aren’t the only ones feeling this way. It was nice to see a room full of people who are also going through the same thing,” said Scott McCarty, of Wethersfield.
Town leaders say the discussion was a necessary step toward rebuilding a community devastated by Mother Nature.
"It's a balance of reassurance and support and kind of confirmation for people that this is normal and expected," said Stilwell.
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