How to Help Your Child Deal with Their Anger

Many parents believe in the same myth: if they do everything right, their children will be happy. But that’s not how childhood works. No matter how much you love your child or how much you give to them in the way of attention and material items, kids are still going to experience all kinds of emotions, including anger. While childhood is filled with fun and wonder, it is also a time when children often feel a lack of independence, scared, and confused by the world around them. These feelings, combined with growing pains, an increase in hormones and the pressure of doing well in school and extra-curricular activities, quite naturally leads to frustration and anger. Here are some ways to help your child deal with their anger:

Recognize it’s Normal and HealthyYoung, ethnic boy in red dirty coat stretches out his arms, fingers spread, looking angry and screaming with his mouth wide open needing parenting help and Family Therapy services.

You can’t help your child if you see them as Damien from “The Omen.” The feeling of anger is completely normal and natural for human beings of all ages to experience. Approach your child with this attitude. Your job is not to STOP them from feeling anger, it’s to help them process their anger in constructive, not destructive, ways.

Stay Calm

If only your child chose to be angry on the days you didn’t have a fight with a coworker and then were stuck in traffic on the way home for an hour and a half. It’s important to remain calm when your child is having an anger fit, even on those days you feel like blowing your own top. This will not only help keep the situation under control, it will also teach them through action how to control their own emotions as they grow and develop.

Validate Your Child’s Anger

Never tell your child they shouldn’t feel something they are feeling. If they are feeling frustrated and angry, chances are there is a very good reason for it. So validate their anger. This can be as simple as saying, “You seem very upset right now,” instead of saying, “Hey, calm down, there’s no reason to get so angry.” Validating their feelings will help them identify their emotions and not feel bad or ashamed of them.

Help Them Release Their Energy

Family Therapy for young Caucasian girl dressed in blue jeans, jean jacket and sneakers, sitting, knees bent up, in doorway to outdoors with face in hands, crying and angryHelp your child deal with their anger in positive ways instead of negative ways. Very young children may want to draw their anger. Older children may want to run around in the back yard. Teenagers may want to lift weights to get that energy out. Squeezing stress balls and bubble wrap is a fun way to get the anger out and it often ends in everyone having a good laugh. Feeling anger is a natural part of life. Don’t make your child feel bad for their anger and don’t feel like you’ve somehow failed as a parent because your child experiences anger. Anger just is and we all have to learn to process it in healthy ways. Some kids have more anger than others. In the case of a divorce or sudden death of a parent, a child may be dealing with the kind of anger that requires professional counseling. If you or someone you know has a child with extreme anger issues and would like to explore treatment options, please be in touch. I would be more than happy to discuss how I may be able to help.

Contact Abby:

Helping families feel connected is at the core of my Family Therapy practice. Should you feel like your family might benefit from family counseling to increase your family connections and decrease family conflicts with a challenging and/or gifted child in the home, you have come to the right place! I also offer individual therapy to parents of challenging and/or gifted children, online, or in my office in Arcadia. Contact me via email, or give me a call at (626) 755-4059 for a FREE 20-minute, Initial Phone Consultation.Smiling female therapist in a blue top sitting at a wooden dining table promoting her options for Family Therapy in Client's Home For family therapy, I meet alone with parents in my Arcadia office for the first session. I want there to be a good fit between us, before you introduce me to your children. In-Home Family Therapy (Home-Based Family Counseling) is an option to families living in Pasadena, Glendale and Arcadia, California, as well as the surrounding areas of the San Gabriel Valley. I have completed training from SENG (Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted) and am a certified SENG Parent Support Group Facilitator. You will find my professional listing with SENG here. Please feel free to find out more about me on my Family Trauma Therapy page. You can also explore my CredentialsServices, and Rates.  LGBTQIA+ affirming therapy is a core value of my practice. My style shines through on my blog pagewhere I write about various topics affecting families with challenging children.