Do you have a child or know a child who is quick to anger or expresses their anger in challenging ways? Raising a child who is often on the emotional edge of "losing it" can make parents and caregivers feel like they are walking on egg shells. This leads to chronic stress in the home for parents, siblings and the child struggling with their emotions.
There are a lot of possible "whys" to consider for a child who struggles with anger and finding healthy ways to express it.
Is there an underlying issue of depression, anxiety or neuro-diversity such as ADHD or autism that needs to be considered and treated? Is there a current situation causing extreme stress on the child, such as bullying? Has your child experienced some form of trauma?
Many of the families that I work with in parent coaching are parenting kids who have experienced trauma. Trauma is an emotional response to a significant disturbing event that threatens a person’s sense of safety for themselves or others and overwhelms a person’s ability to cope.
Trauma comes in lots of different forms, and is interpreted uniquely by each individual. This means that two kids in the same family can go through the same experience and one can be traumatized by it while the other is not.
Some possible forms of childhood traumas include:
Childhood trauma comes out in behaviors. Signs that the anger is more than typical for your child's age might include:
*aggressive lashing out at others either physically or verbally
*behavior you would expect from a child much younger
*trouble with relationships with peers, teachers or in the home
*family feels controlled by fear of child's angry outbursts
*0-100 rapid onset of anger/ frustration
If this sounds like your family, you're not alone. Get help. It's always wise to start with talking to your family doctor or pediatrician.
There is a lot you can do as the parent/ guardian of a child who's experience trauma, to help your child heal. If you're interested in hearing about the Family Healing and Growth program, where parents participate in self-paced modules, group coaching and/or one-on-one coaching sign up for a free consult.
There is always hope for healing and growth.