Posted by: Dr. Justin D'Arienzo, Psy.D., ABPP
Anger Management and Parenting
Does your child make you angry? Do you handle your anger appropriately with your child(ren)? How does a parent’s expression of anger impact their child?
Anger Management and Parenting was written for D’Arienzo Psychological Group by University of North Florida (UNF) Psychology Student and Future Industrial Organizational Psychologist, Brandon Araujo, in December 2013. His article offers great insight about anger management and parenting.
In our daily lives we are exposed to endless amounts of irritating and stressful situations: rush hour traffic, missing deadlines at work, rushing around town running errands, etc. On top of these we have our kids in the backseat whining, being disobedient in public, or just making a mess at home. With these two agitators combined it’s no surprise that we lose control of our anger, and when we do we tend to direct that anger towards our children.
Children who are yelled at during their childhood tend to raise their own kids the same way. This type of parenting is occasionally effective with controlling behavior, however, this method tends to cause problems in the parent-child relationship. These problems include mistrust and intentional disobedience; this method also has a negative impact on the child’s self-esteem, which could impact their performance in school and their social abilities.
In order to control your anger towards your children you must first be able to recognize when you start to become angry. Parents will frequently go into a blind rage screaming and punishing their children without thinking. By realizing you are angry at your child you are able to complete the next few steps toward positive parenting. Once you identify yourself as angry, take a few deep breaths and think about whether or not the reason you are angry is reasonable. Is it reasonable to yell at your kid if they made a mess in the kitchen? Is it reasonable to make a scene in the supermarket if your child demands that they need candy? Most of the time the answer to these questions will be no and will help you calm down. After calming down think about the situation that has occurred and determine a proactive way to change your child’s behavior. Never try to punish your child while you are angry. Doing so will result in senseless punishments that will damage the parent-child relationship.
If you experience frequent and intense anger towards your children it may be helpful to meet with a licensed psychologist to discuss your parent-child relationship. This licensed psychologist will help you learn how to control your anger, change your child’s behavior in a non-aggressive manner, and teach you how to build a loving and nurturing relationship with your child.
If you need help controlling your anger with your children or others contact D’Arienzo Psychological Group at 904-379-8094 or consider taking one of our four hour online anger management course or eight hour online anger management course. Our courses are guaranteed to offer you additional skills and better awareness assisting you in improving your ability to manage your emotions and your anger.