Teen Anger

Anger has led to a lot of poor choices and rash decisions. To know this, all you have to do is read the newspaper. Murders, thefts, insidious plots have all begun from a point of anger. On the other hand, so have marches against injustice and new legislation in the government. The difference is how the angry feelings were handled.

One of the daunting jobs of a parent is to help their children manage their emotional states. While we can never control what another person says or does, we can control our response to it. That sense of control comes with a responsibility.

Teenagers can be impetuous. When they are happy, they are on top of the world and so outgoing and giddy. When they are in the dumps, they may hide in their rooms, shunning friends and family. It is a swing of the pendulum from one side to the other.

Successfully dealing with anger begins at home. Ninety-five percent of the time, our children learn their coping skills by watching us even when we don’t know that they are watching. Setting a good example is square one for managing anger.

How do we manage our own angry feelings? Do we sit down and talk about it, or do we say things that we shouldn’t and then have to apologize later?

Look at your child. You can tell when they are not in a good mood. Maybe they are slamming doors or stomping around the house. Talk to them and find out what is the matter. It could be romantic trouble, trouble at school or difficulty dealing with a personal issue. If they don’t want to talk right then, let them know that you are available when they want to discuss the problem.

When you do talk, ask them to take a deep breath first. It is easier to view a situation when you are calm. Once you hear the story, you can suggest ways that they can deal with their anger. For one, help them to look past the insult and see what may be causing it. Someone may lash out in anger because they are upset about something else. Sympathizing with the other person can often diffuse an angry situation.

Teach them to learn their anger triggers. We all have them. Knowing them can help your teen to control their reactions when their “buttons are pushed.” After they have had time to think, then they can deal with the situation appropriately.

Does your teen have trouble with anger? Talk it out. Teach them to begin here so that they can end on a positive note.

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