Catching the Anger Before it Spills Out On Your Children
David Johnson Says...
I commend you for your courage in facing your anger issue. Parenting is THE most difficult job we will ever face, largely because we care so much for our children, our emotions are always involved at peak levels. Managing and making sense of them is very difficult and important.
First of all, your unpredictable anger does indeed come from somewhere. It will take detailed self-exploration that requires several sessions with a psychotherapist. Consider bringing your wife along. You may find things will go much quicker with her help.
Here is an example of the sorts of things you may learn about yourself. Anger in men often reflects underlying feelings of vulnerability. Boys are often shamed for vulnerable feelings because it is thought they aren't manly. They often compensate by adopting anger as their favorite feeling, an manly emotion of strength. Perhaps you are afraid of how your children will grow up. Perhaps you worry their behavior has to shape up quickly before they head off to school or they will find their future compromised. Perhaps you see some of your less desirable traits in your children and worry your children will suffer like you did. So you become excessively persistent and insistent to squelch out the offending behaviors. Or perhaps you are simply overwhelmed with their age appropriate behavior. All you want is peace and quite after a long stressful day at work.
Whatever the underlying issue is, you must ferret it out and learn to address it appropriately. You will learn that your angry behavior can be controlled. Your belief and fear that you can't control it makes it beyond your reach. It will take lots of practice and a willingness to look yourself in the mirror unflinchingly to master your anger. Once you learn what feelings underlie your anger and you begin to master the "heat of the moment," you will discover some concrete ways to address and express your feelings by learning new skills and expanding your knowledge of child care.
You will also learn to listen to your children, understand how to respectfully address their concerns as well as your own, and negotiate a win win solution.I wish you all the best!
Page last updated Mar 12, 2013