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Home >  Information A-ZAll Kids Information Articles Anger in Children

Anger in Children:

Kids will get angry. Maybe you didn't buy them a toy they wanted, maybe they didn't get to watch their favorite cartoon, maybe they wanted to go somewhere and for some reason they didn't get to. Just as with adults, there are all kinds of reasons that a child may get angry, and it is healthy for your child to be able to express that anger when it comes. But, it is important to teach them early what is acceptable and what isn't. Some of the following are good ways to have your child vent their anger, and starting these at an early age can help them manage their anger as they grow up:

• Talk it out—just as with adults, children can feel better if they are allowed to get their feelings off their chest. This doesn't mean you should allow them to yell at you, though. You should wait until they have cooled down some, and then have them explain to you why they are so upset. The problem may not actually be solved by them doing this, but when they get to express themselves, they are less likely to hold on to that anger for as long. When you discuss it with your child, you should explain to them why you can't or won't fix the problem, and recognize their anger. Telling them that you understand why they are mad, but there is nothing you can do is much better than telling them you don't care if they are mad.

• Have them write it down—if your child is able to write, you can have them sit down and write out how they are feeling. They can have this in a journal for no one to ever see, a letter to whoever made them angry that they will or will not send, or on a piece of paper that they will throw away as soon as they are finished. No matter how you have them do it, or how they choose to do it, it can help a child cope with their feelings when they don't feel like talking about it.

• Let them cool off—instead of pushing the issue of why they are upset, let them be by themselves for a while. This can help them realize that what they are upset about might not be that big of a deal. It may not, but it can at least make the talk you have afterwards a lot more effective.

• Figure out the cause—if your child is acting angry and you can't figure out what caused it, you need to sit down and have a talk with your child. It is very important to figure out what is going on. Your child may be experiencing something that you know nothing about, and the only way to find out is to start by talking to them about it.

• Watch out for too much anger—if your child stays angry on a regular basis, commonly gets angry without real reason, or gets so angry that you could describe the way they act as having rage, you should take them to the doctor. It could be that your child has one of many issues that you know nothing about. They could have something going on at school that you are unaware of, someone could be treating them badly without you knowing about it, or it could be a medical condition. Many mood disorders come with rage or excessive anger, and pinpointing the cause of your child's problem as early as possible makes your chance of finding a successful solution that much better.

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