Today I’m sharing 10 indicators that you’d be wise to address your child’s anger outbursts.
But before I dive in, I want you to know that I come from an angry family, so I know what it’s like to live in a family where there are a lot of anger outbursts.
I remember the dread and shock when one of my siblings actually picked up the breakfast table and everything went cascading to the floor with a big clatter, coffee spattering everywhere.
Watch the video or scroll down to read more…
And I have a temper myself.
I understand how draining it can feel when anger outbursts are dominating, or even just punctuating family life. And also how embarrassing it can be when your child is the only one coming out of school with a big scowl on their face, dumping their bag at your feet and saying no to the nice something you offer them.
I understand how guilty you can feel when there’s another mighty temper outburst, and you feel bad that you’re not able to help your child be happier.
And then there may also be a sense of shame. Why can other people manage this? Why don’t I know how to do this?
And I want you to know that this is more common than you would think – you’re definitely not alone. It’s not your fault and there is a way through.
Why do I think it so important to establish whether you need to act?
- I know from all my experience working with families how damaging anger outbursts in the family can be – how they disrupt the fabric of family life, the sense of family cohesion and the flow of love between family members. Frequent anger outbursts make family life feel like a chore and it becomes really difficult to create happy memories.
- If your child is like a volcano – with frequent and maybe unpredictable eruptions – it means that there are unresolved feelings underneath. And these feelings need addressing. Gabor Maté, physician, renowned author and speaker, says that, and I paraphrase here, our children don’t get traumatised by the things that happen to them, but through the fact that they are alone with what happens to them.
- Angry children are more likely to become angry adults, so I believe that resolving these feelings and helping children be happier is a really important job. According to research, we in the UK have very particular anger issues. 80% of us believe we’re getting angrier as a nation. 45% of us are having anger outbursts at work, and we are literally ranking top amongst 16 European countries in terms of road rage.
Here are 10 signs that your child’s anger outbursts are something you’d be wise to address.
- You have physical marks on you from the hitting, scratching, biting or kicking.
- Your child is having two or more outbursts a week.
- These outbursts are dangerous, or scary – involving your child wanting to hit you, or throw things, or break things.
- Your child has hurt other children and other parents sometimes avoid their child having contact with your child – because they’re worried.
- Your child’s anger is disrupting family events like games, outings or meals out.
- Nothing you’re doing is working. And it’s embarrassing and making you feel guilty and ashamed.
- You’re avoiding telling people about how your child behaves at home.
- You’re avoiding going places, because you don’t know how things will work out when you get there.
- School, family or friends are telling you that you need to help your child manage their anger. They’ve noticed.
- Your child is upset that they feel unable to prevent themselves exploding. They don’t like feeling out of control.
If you’re experiencing any or a combination of the above, then yes, I think it would be wise to address this. There’s absolutely no need for you or your child to be suffering this. And there are ways forward.
The good news is that I’m going to be sharing more tips and perspectives in the coming days on my Facebook page. So, if this has been helpful, do go there and make sure to follow me so that you get to see my posts.
In next week’s blog, I’ll be looking at common mistakes that we tend to make when we are tackling anger issues in our children. And the one fundamental step we do need to take that really does work.
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