Anger in Children
Anger in children is not uncommon. Often known as temper tantrums or fits, young children often turn to outbursts of anger to communicate their wants and needs when they lack the communication skills to express them appropriately. While anger in children is considered normal behavior to an extent, dealing with it can be a stressful chore for many parents.
If you are experiencing problems with anger in your children, here are some steps you can take that may help you regain control:
- Positive reinforcement - Instead of yelling at your child when they do something wrong, praise them when they do something right. Oftentimes, negative behavior is simply a cry for attention, and any reaction will satisfy the child's need and reinforce the behavior they are receiving attention for.
- Ignore them - As hard as it may be, it is often best to ignore your child when they are misbehaving than to respond. If you are in a public place, calmly remove them from the situation and react as little as possible to avoid negative reinforcement of the situation and the anger your children are exhibiting.
- Provide physical outlets - Many times the anger your children may be experiencing may be due to pent up energy. Providing outlets like team sports or family activities such as biking, walks, hiking, or simply spending time outside may help relieve some of these emotions.
- Communicate - Talk to your children about their behavior openly, and let them know how it affects you and the family. Your children may not realize the impact their anger has on their loved ones.
If you are having anger issues with your children, trying these steps may be of help. However, if the anger becomes too difficult to handle or you feel your child may be suffering from depression, many people find that meeting with a specialist in this area can also provide them with simple and effective management techniques.