If you understand the other feelings that lie behind anger of the child, you will be in a much better position to help your children process it. There are numerous other feelings masked by anger. These include hurt, fear, shame, feelings of abandonment and rejection, vulnerability, feeling unloved and unlovable. Very often hurt is the main feeling behind anger, and if you talk to your children about that hurt, you will have a healing effect on them. Sometimes with younger children fear is the feeling that triggers anger. Fear is about survival and being in danger ultimately provokes anger. There are many fears that a child may harbour and hence many reasons for their anger. Anger is very quick to fill a vacuum, and it can readily fill the emptiness in an unloved child. Children who have not experienced love, will not know why they are angry, the parent or parents who are unable to give love will be puzzled and possibly blame the child. How often do we label our children without pausing to consider why they are as they are? Let us not label them as angry children. Let us look at ourselves as parents and take responsibility for forming them this way. Children need unconditional love, and those who get it will thrive and never suffer core anger. Anger will also fill the vacuum in a child who feels a failure, feels powerless, unwanted, is hungry, is in danger of being hurt, is deprived of something essential, is not liked by other children, or is confused.
Extract from Understanding and Healing the Hurts of Childhood. Publication 2018
THERAPISTS IN TIPPERARY
PSYCHOTHERAPISTS IN TIPPERARY
DEATH OF A CHILD
ABUSE AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE