Whether it’s because of not receiving that burger that the little one wanted or coz of getting into a fight with a friend over a toy, children are prone to getting uncontrollably angry at times. You can talk to any parent and chances are that almost all of them will have more than one stories of their child acting out because of their rage. The issue is further compounded by the fact that children, unlike adults, are not too good at controlling their outbursts or reasoning with their feelings. Thus, their anger can soon turn violent and destructive, leaving parents at a loss of words when it comes to dealing with their kids.
We, at the Lotus Valley International School, one of the top international schools in Noida, understand the frustration and issues that parents can face in dealing with an angry child. However, we would also like to advise the parents that it is of no use sending the angry child to his/her room or yelling at him/her louder than he can. Just as our young ones get angry faster than us, they are also delicate in terms of their feelings. We believe that as their mentors and parents, it is our responsibility to deal with their anger in a much more well-thought-out manner such that their feelings do not get hurt but at the same time they calm down enough to realize the consequences of their actions.
Do not challenge or yell at the child right then
We have noticed that most of the times parents deal with the angry outburst from the kids by challenging them or yelling right back. Getting out of control with your anger is not going to help the child deal with his/her anger issues and instead, it will act like throwing a burning match into a pile of firecrackers. Also, keep in mind that no matter how out of control the situation feels like, never raise your hand on the child at that moment.
Acknowledge the feelings of your kid
If you validate the feelings of your child and listen to what he/she has to say, the kid will not have to defend those feelings anymore and that is likely to calm him/her down. Acknowledge the feelings of your child and reason with those instead of simply saying things like “stop crying” or “go to your room, you are grounded.” Their anger intensifies the more you disregard their feelings and that is never the right way out.
Practice showing empathy to your child
We would advise you to listen to the feelings of your child without interruption at that point in time. This way, you give space for the anger of your child to dissipate and they no longer feel the need to use up their energy to defend the fairness of their position. Your open reception to the child’s anger will make his/her reaction to gradually go from critical to emotional. The empathy that they learn from you will help them have better emotional control the next time.
Set clear rules for acceptable behavior
Though we would always suggest you to validate the feelings of your child but that in no way means that you accept any bad behavior on their part. You need to set clear boundaries for acceptable behavior with your child and that includes no throwing, hitting, breaking things, or showing disrespect. Involve the children in understanding the consequences of their behavior as that way a child is more likely to accept your rules.
Make the child practice relaxation methods
There are multiple relaxation methods which you can teach your child to help him/her self-monitor and control his/her anger. Start by teaching the kid the breathing techniques and ask him/her to count to ten before giving in to any impulse. You can also tell the child to breathe in and out several times before he/she starts acting out to establish control over the situation. Such breathing techniques are not mastered within a day and your child will take time to gradually take anger in a stride.
We believe that dealing with negative emotions like anger, hatred, jealousy, and the likes are all a part and parcel of growing up. Being adults and the guiding light for kids, it is our responsibility to make sure that we teach our little ones the right way to deal with all of these emotions in the growing years itself so that they are not posed with any hurdles in their path when they face the world as an adult.