Helene Goldnadel on the Development of an Angry Child

Anger is a reaction that all humans feel and express. It’s part of the “fight or flight” reaction that makes us act when we encounter danger. It’s an important tool that we use to make certain our urgent needs are met.


So, what tics you off? It seems pretty easy to assume that the things that bother us as adults are legitimate. If we are stopped by too many traffic lights on our way to an important meeting, we get “miffed”. If the newly hired boss’ nephew gets your well-deserved promotion you were expecting, you get “hot”. When your child purposefully throws his plateful of spaghetti against your white drapes, you’re pretty likely to get steamed!


Kids have urgent needs, too. The needs may not seem as big or as easy to identify as those that anger adults – but if you watch a kid get angry, you can bet that to him/her the urgent need was pretty darned important.


Below are three primary reasons that kids get angry according to Helene Goldnadel:


**About Unmet Needs. Children are born totally helpless and dependent upon us to attend to their every need: food, warmth, attention, comfort. If an infant gets hungry, he cries to alert us to handle it! At about 6 weeks-old, babies learn to smile to get the attention they need – and it works because no parent can resist this endearing socialization tactic. As they grow and mature, their abilities to take care of their own needs become more elaborate, but you’ll still get complaints when their inexperience prevents them from full satisfaction.


At first kids seem to try simple notification with a cry or a yell. But when the problem is not handled or eliminated, just watch the rage erupt. To an immature developing person, this may seem the ONLY way to get an adult to intervene. And, it works pretty darned well!!!


**About Frustration. The simplicity of infancy behind them, children eventually develop more complex social, emotional and intellectual needs. When the kid tries to build a tower with blocks and it keeps falling down, he is likely to get frustrated. When the child tries to get another child to get out of her way, she’s likely to get frustrated and angry. When the child’s older brother has permission to climb higher on the jungle-gym than Mom allows the younger brother to do, he’s likely to get really angry – at Mom.


Frustration is a normal part of life. We don’t always get everything we want in the exact way we want it! When frustration is repeatedly a part of a child’s experience, he/she could get discouraged and begin to expect that things won’t work out – then watch out! Children who do not receive encouragement from their parents are likely to simmer in their frustration. And, those who do not learn how to handle their frustration are likely to develop a short-fuse toward anger outbursts.


**About “Useful” Anger. Unlike reactive anger, functional anger is a learned behavior. Some children learn that anger works great to manipulate the people around them. A well-staged temper-tantrum can demand full attention, embarrass parents, or force any issue. A child that uses anger is going to have a difficulty learning new social behaviors to get his/her needs met – because anger works so profoundly.


No matter what stimulates the anger, a frequently “angry” child needs help. This child needs guidance to discover effective ways to get his needs met; or he/she needs help learning how to deal with frustration; or he/she needs to learn a wider range of behaviors to effectively relate to people. Understanding the development of angry children is an important first step toward creating a parenting plan to help them modify their anger responses or behaviors.


Every kid is unique. Every parent-child relationship is unique. No advice for ANY parent-child situation is going to work for EVERY family. However, the key to successful parenting KNOW why your children do what they do or how their behavior serves them. And when the goin’-gets-rough, go-‘n’-get more information


For more info, please visit here: http://helenegoldnadel.eklablog.com/


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