Control your child’s anger in 5 easy ways.
Fighting, Screaming, Yelling, Hitting, Tantrums, Swearing, Biting. Sounds familiar? Welcome to the Parents of Angry Child Club.
All Normal Children like All Normal Human Beings feel angry. Isn’t it one of the human emotions to feel anger when we dislike something. When your boss yells at you in front of all your colleagues, are you elated and happy?
It is but natural to feel resentment and anger at times. But what matters most is how we act upon that anger.
Your child is no different. He or she will be angry at times for very silly reasons. Whether it is doing their homework, going to bed or need that chocolate in the supermarket. There could be many triggers which lead a child to lash out.
While you cannot prevent your child from getting angry but you can find ways to control your child’s anger.
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I am listing below few of the ways to control your child’s anger which you might find useful.
1.Identify the problem.
Most of the time we are so busy and engrossed in our lives, that we miss to notice the small triggers that build up the anger in kids. When the behavior is identified early, it is easier to manage. If your child is all of a sudden throwing tantrums and swearing, you will have to look into what exactly is the problem.
Your child could have sudden outbursts, lack of empathy towards others, always being defiant, doesn’t take responsibility and blames others. There could be many other signs that you could help identify that your child has anger issues.
It could be just that your child is craving your attention. Or there could be a major life event like parents’ separation, death of a loved one/pet or change of place. There could be many reasons why your otherwise calm and composed kid is throwing tantrums.
Once you have identified the basic problem, it will be easier to control your child’s anger in a better way.
2. Communicate and validate their feelings.
Let your child communicate their feelings freely. Sometimes the child is so confused what exactly they are feeling. And if you try to advice them to calm down before validating their feelings, you are signing up for disaster.
A couple of months back, my son was back from school in a rage. His classmates had been teasing him endlessly and finally he had enough. He was seething in anger and taking it out on his siblings on the way back home from school.
First I had to validated his feelings and get to the bottom of it.
“I see you are really upset and shaking from anger. I feel like that too when I am angry. My heart races a lot when I am angry.”
My son: “Yes, I feel like that and more. I feel that I am going to explode with anger thinking about my classmates.”
“I get it, they must have done something really bad to make you feel like this.”
And at that moment, he started crying and said what had happened in school.
You will have to validate their feelings that feeling anger is normal. Your child needs your reassurance every step of the way. When you validate their anger, you have just shown them that it is ok to be angry but how they respond is what matters.
You will have to take into account their personality type. If your child is a extrovert, he will have no problem sharing his feeling with you. But an introvert child would prefer to be left alone and will internalize his feelings. In such a case, you can tell, “I know you are really angry right now, but Mommy is here when you are ready to talk.”
Take up the subject again when they are in a calmer mood. Ask them what got them so mad. Most often, kids want to be able to communicate without any judgement. They will eventually open up about their apprehensions.
3. Manage the Anger
Once you have identified & validated their anger, you can teach them how to manage it. Set limits as to what is acceptable and what is not. While expressing displeasure in a calm way is acceptable but hitting and swearing is certainly off limits. In the above example of my son, I asked him how did he react to his classmates.
He said, “I was so angry, so angry, but I didn’t call them names. I asked them to stop bullying or else there would be consequences to their behavior.”
Then I asked what happened next. He said, “It fell on deaf ears and they continued with their behavior, so I went up to the teacher and reported them.”
I was so glad that he had taken my previous advice and done what is right rather than resorting to unacceptable behavior. I told him that I am so proud of him. And asked whether he would like me to have a word with the school, to which he replied in the negative. He said things have been sorted as the teacher was involved and the teacher had resolved the matter positively and amicably.
It is very important that the kids learn how to manage their anger. Keep reminding them when they are in a calmer mood that it is never a right choice to hit or swear. Tell them that the one who controls the anger is a much more powerful person that a one who cannot restrain his emotions.
4. Appreciate good behavior.
Always appreciate when they have successfully managed their anger in a positive way. Praise them when they co-operate and play with other kids. It is always the other way round. We don’t bother when the kids play quietly for hours at a stretch. It is only when they fight among themselves that we notice.
Kids vie for our attention and thrive on our response. If they never get appreciated for good behavior, chances are that they will try to get your negative attention.
When they play quietly, surprise them by saying, “Oh, wow! You have been playing with each other with so much fun. That’s seems so good.”
5. Set a good example.
Kids get their traits from their parents. This is very much true with the fact they learn from our behavior as well. Most of the times, you will see our own words from their mouths. They will use exact same words that we use. The quote that “Don’t worry kids never listen to you, but worry that they are always watching you.”
This quote is just about everything that I want to say. Our children imitate us.
If you are person who flies in a rage over someone who cuts you in a lane, and start swearing. You will nevertheless find that with your kid.
Just be extra careful when kids are around. They are like sponges, absorbing everything they see or hear. And as our children, they look up to their parents as role model most of the time.
When the kids see that the parents handle situations in a calm and composed manner, then they would learn valuable life lessons.
So these were my 5 steps to control your child’s anger. What are the ways that you do to control your child’s anger. Let me know through comments below.
Until Next Time,