How to Deal with Your Angry Child - Parenting Tips
Having to parent an angry child can be a nightmare. Anger can be a tough emotion to deal with for adults, so imagine how tough it would be for a child to deal with anger? Anger is a perfectly normal emotion. We all get angry; however, for a child, anger is a much more complex emotion. Whereas an adult knows coping mechanisms to deal with anger, a child is often not well equipped to cope with anger. As a parent, you should look towards equipping your child with effective coping mechanisms and set limits and boundaries - for the way a child deals with anger now can influence the way he/she deals with anger as an adult. You most definitely wouldn't want your child to have to struggle with anger as an adult, so start now by teaching them effective coping mechanisms. Here are some tips on how to help your child deal with anger.
Ways To Manage And Help Your Angry Child - Some Tips
Show Them By Example:
Most parents don't think twice about the way they express their anger in front of their kids. Well, kids are very observant and notice how their parents react to adversities, problems, stresses, etc. If you, as a parent, were to yell at people - then you obviously aren't providing your kids with a good role model. You should practice what you preach. So, watch how you react to others in front of your kids. Express your anger in a healthy way by verbalizing it in a normal voice, staying in control at all times. Your kids would learn from you that this way is best, as opposed to yelling/creating a scene.
Set Limits And Boundaries:
A child should know their boundaries/limits from an early age. Clearly lay them out, so they know them well. Your child should know the consequences should they break rules/boundaries set by you.
Communicate to your child that throwing a temper tantrum/indulging in destructive behavior is not going to get them what they want. Teach them that negative behaviors such as these doesn't pay and, in fact, could cost them dear in terms of appropriate punishment/denial of privileges like playtime, etc. Encourage them to bring up their frustrations by seeking your time and communicating them to you. Assure them that if they were to approach you with their frustrations/grievances in such a constructive, positive way - that you'd listen to them much more intently and would try to address them to their satisfaction. Teach them ways to control anger - like counting from 1-10 / taking deep breaths.
Stay Strong and Firm:
Don't ever give in to bad behavior. Doing so would encourage your child to repeat the bad behavior that resulted in you giving in. Be firm and strong. It might be stressful to have to hear your child wail/cry/get angry and try all the tricks up their sleeves, but stay resolute. Let them know in no uncertain terms that you won't listen to them until they stop the negative behavior and start talking to you in a calm voice.
Reward Good Behavior:
If your child has managed a potentially explosive situation calmly and with maturity (without giving in to anger), praise them for doing so. Rewards reinforce good behavior, so be generous in your praise when your child exhibits good behavior in the face of provocation.
Try To Limit Exposure To Violent Media:
Television, movies, video games often can contain violent, graphic scenes that can twist a child's perception of what is acceptable and what is not, especially when they are very young. Try to shield your child from such shows, movies, games, etc.
Seek The Help of a Professional:
You can teach most children how to control their anger by the methods above; however, there are some children who may need professional help. If your child seems to have continued problems with managing his/her anger, gives in to impulsive tendencies, indulges in constant destructive behavior - you may have to get your child evaluated by a medical doctor. There are certain disorders that could be responsible for these behaviors, so it is best to seek professional help in such cases.