Angry much? We all lead such fast-paced, busy lives that we hardly have the time to “stop and smell the roses.” Invariably frustration and anger builds up, bubbling forth in inopportune situations. While we learn to be calm in front of our colleagues, friends, and even our relatives, our poor kids end up bearing the brunt of our simmering frustrations, when they cross the line. Are you a victim as well of this great parental anger agony? Then read on to know the five things not to say to your kids when anger gets the best of you.
- Don’t be a screaming bird
After a long hard day at work or home, it is natural to lose your cool when your child pesters you for something constantly or does something that you have “always” told him/her not to do. The instant reaction is to scream at them and go “How many times have I told you to not do this?!!!!!!” Stop. Right there. This is where you set the tone for power struggle that will never end. Instead, swallow that anger, smile a creepy smile if you wish, go get a glass of water and calm down. Then sit your child down and have an adult conversation. Nothing works with them like respect does. Honest. If you don’t buy this, remember that what you sow, so shall you reap. Keep screaming at your kids and your little one may turn into angry hulk himself/herself.
2. Shooting them scary looks
So you are not the screaming kind when angry. But you perhaps bare those pearly whites and shoot dagger-like looks at your guilty child that make him/her cower? Tch Tch. That’s not cool either. Because eventually your child will learn to dismiss those looks or worse, will start storing hurt, anguish and anger within his/her tiny heart leading to unresolved emotional issues. I hear you asking exasperatedly, “So what do I do when I am angry?” Ah, think of a funny song! Yes, you read that right. A song, a joke, or a humorous thing that is sure to crack you up and cool you down. Break the tension in your bones and emerge out calm-headed so that you can lovingly tell your child that he/she is truly upsetting you. Also, tell your little one, how she can constructively avoid creating such situations.
3. Name-calling is so uncool
Name calling is mean. Period. It is tempting to throw seemingly harmless words and phrases like “Don’t be an idiot.” “How can you be so dumb!” when anger gets the best of you. But your words shape your child’s self image. Show tough love. Tell your kid that what he/she did was hurtful and broke your hurt, upset you, is not good for anyone etc, but refrain from name calling. If the harsh words somehow escape from your mind and land on your lips, simply start humming a song! That will not only ease the tension of the moment but will also confuse your child. He will then definitely listen to your kind and respectful reprimand.
4. Silent treatment or going on “talk to the hand” mode
Not telling your child what went wrong and just giving him/her the silent treatment would only give you both heart burns. Instead you can send your child to the silent corner and ask him/her to reflect on his mistake, after you respectfully explain to them what went wrong.
5. Breaking down will scare the little one
Sometimes things feel so overwhelming that you might yourself feel like just crying your eyes out, when your child drives you up the wall constantly (this happens for real for some of us!). Why freak your child out and buy a headache in the bargain as well (dehydration and works)? Call a friend, have a soothing chat, extract yourself from the situation and avoid a confusing and conflict-filled scene with your child.
If none of this helps you, you can always post your parenting queries here, and we would happily write back to you with some tailor-made tips for you.
May the force be with you, my dear parents!