How to deal with an angry child

There are many quick decisions to take when you are faced with an angry child, but basically you should not retaliate inappropriately. Always remain in your adult shoes. It is not uncommon for adults to regress into their childhood shoes when dealing with certain situations, including dealing with an angry child. When this happens we can end up with two angry children in confrontation – the angry child and the angry inner child of the adult. By staying in the adult’s shoes you can remain calm and show the child how to deal with anger. If you show control and calmness in an angry situation they too will learn this behaviour.
It is also beneficial for the child if you reflect and acknowledge the anger that he is showing. Allowing him to express the reasons for the anger helps to allay it. Perhaps you might ask yourself the questions posed by Whitehouse and Pudney – have your children the opportunity to express their anger at home (or in school)? Can they take it for granted that they can express their feelings, or are you as a parent too fearful of anger to allow it to be vented by them? If so why? You may have to look back at your own childhood to find the reason. You could also check if you are more comfortable with giving boys the space to express their anger, but not the girls. Your belief might be that it is more acceptable for boys to express anger than girls, that it is a sign of masculinity, a testosterone fuelled feeling! Overall, therefore, listening to your children is of the utmost importance, and listening means hearing what they have to say, acknowledging it and taking it seriously. That does not mean giving in to a child’s demands, but giving her respect and time, and letting her see that what she has to say is important.
Extract from Understanding and Healing the Hurts of Childhood. Publication 2018
THERAPISTS IN TIPPERARY
PSYCHOTHERAPISTS IN TIPPERARY
COUNSELLING TIPPERARY
DEATH OF A CHILD
ABUSE AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
FEAR
ANGER
JEALOUSY

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