Dealing with a child who appears to be angry at the world can prove challenging for parents. If your child exhibits signs of extreme anger, there is likely something at the root of this aggression. Instead of trying to wish your child’s anger away, consider the causes. By dealing with his underlying issues, you may be able to help him overcome this emotional distress.
3 Stages of Anger
There is likely more to your child’s anger than meets the eye. As AtHealth reports, there are three stages of anger. The first stage is the emotional stage. It is during this stage that the child experiences the emotion that causes anger. The second stage is the expression stage. In this stage, the child in some way expresses his anger, either by acting out or stating that he is angry. The final stage involves understanding. Here, the child comes to terms with his anger and develops an understanding of the anger’s cause. Many children continually experience anger because they fail to move through these three stages. They stop before they reach the understanding stage where they determine what caused the anger so they can avoid the situation in the future.
The Unconnected Child
Some children feel anger on a regular basis because they are unconnected, reports AskDrSears. Children who are unconnected feel they are alone in the world. These children often feel like they are missing some important part of themselves, as if they are not a whole and complete individual and therefore not worthy of love and affection. Because unconnected children do not value themselves, they commonly feel that they are not valued by others and, as a result, feel anger toward others. Children can become unconnected for an assortment of reasons, including abuse or trauma.
Inability to Manage Emotions
As an adult, you are capable of feeling emotions and moving past them; however, your child may not have this same ability. As AskDrSears reports, children often struggle to move past emotions, often internalizing them instead of working past them. As these internalized emotions accumulate, children become more and more upset and, as a result, become quick to anger.
Pain from the Past
While some children are angry over events that are currently taking place, others still hold anger over an event long passed. Anything from the divorce of parents to early childhood teasing can haunt children and make them anger easily. To help children whose anger is rooted in the past, you must first identify the cause of the anger, then help the child deal with this underlying cause. Nothing you can do to modify his daily existence will help these children until they deal with the root of their upset.
Helping Your Angry Kid
The best way to help your child overcome his anger is to communicate with him. This often presents a challenge, as many angry children are reluctant to open up and express themselves. If you are trying to help your angry child, make it clear that you are willing to talk, and try to engage him in conversation regularly. Do not, however, push him to talk when he doesn’t want to, as doing so can cause the child to become even angrier and more withdrawn.