"Just the other day, the daughter of my friend came home after school in a panic because her teacher told the class that the United States was heading into another Great Depression," he says. "On top of that, her friends repeated stories about parts of the U.S. being sold to other countries to pay the country's bills." To defuse those "crazy stories," Murset advises taking the following steps: Talk it out. Have an open dialogue with your kids about what is happening and how the government shutdown might affect your family specifically. "If you are a government employee these events could have some immediate impact on your family," Murset says. "Explain to your kids why you aren't at work and how this may affects everyone in the household. Kids are smart and they can feel when things are different or stressful."