I was reading a story where the main character's family is killed by supernatural forces, forcing the character into that world. The family deaths served as a catalyst to kick off the rest of the plot and so had to happen early on, but as there was no time to develop an emotional connection, the main character's grief and subsequent emotional breakdowns felt hollow and melodramatic. However, not having any reaction at all would have been weirder. So that got me wondering. How do you handle emotionally charged moments like this early on when no proper emotional connection has been established, yet these moments are integral and need to occur?