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Old 05-09-2007, 11:23 AM   #1
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Marie78 HB User
Question Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Hi all...this is my first post, this looks like a great site!

My question is a little complicated...but here goes.

My 9 yr old has some serious frustration issues. He has somewhat high expectations in new situations...like he wants everything to be easy and just 'come' to him. When things dont work out...he gets mad. And I mean mad on a dime. He can go from being fine, to one little thing getting under his skin and he is furious.

Hubby had anger management classes as a child for dealing with anger and how to get it under control. My son seems to respond fairly well when talking with hubby....but when I do the same things he doesnt respond as well.

It seems like he needs something diff. from me than he does from his dad. I have a tendancy to be very short tempered, and feel that some of the things he gets so worked up about, he should be able to cope with on his own. (we are talking majorly simple issues here...like breaking a shoestring, or messing up when painting a pic that is just for fun).

He usually starts to cry, but then immediately gets mad. The anger seems to build up, he begins to yell, shake his body, stomp & throw fists at things.

I am at a loss as to how to deal with his anger. I am aware that it is not really anger, but how he deals with rejection, failure, dissapointment, etc....but I need to know what to do. And I wonder why in simple situations he takes everything so seriously...and then demonstrates that in rage. Because it does seem more like rage than anger to me.

And in turn I have really been working on my reactions to him when he starts up, and trying to find the underlying cause of the anger. He does not seem to be responsive though. I am worried about some of the things he has said to me, that he will grow to be a dangerous child...he has made some startling comments that really could be dangerous. Help!

Thanks for reading my long post and offering any advice that you may have!

 
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Old 05-09-2007, 12:35 PM   #2
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Sannah HB UserSannah HB User
Re: Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Hi Marie, welcome, you are probably correct about how you are responding to him. If you respond short-tempered this is like throwing gas on a fire. If you can find a way to stay calm it will help immensely. I know how we mothers feel, like we have to fix everything for our children and it makes us frustrated frequently. Maybe it will help if you think of his anger as belonging to him and you don't have to fix it? Also, when you react like he shouldn't be this way it could really make him angry. The message is that he doesn't have a right to his feelings, like you have to validate (or rather invalidate) them or something. This is how he is responding and he can learn how to respond differently but only by understanding how he feels and why he is getting so angry. Once he understands this he can choose to act differently. I'll keep an eye on this post.

 
Old 05-10-2007, 11:30 AM   #3
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Re: Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Thank you for your post Sannah. I have been working on keeping my cool and not letting my frustration show when he acts up. And a lot of times I will let him try to work through it on his own. But there comes a point when certain behaviours are just NOT allowed in the home. This is where I draw the line, and then he starts to get in trouble. Throwing things, hitting things, and talking meanly/harshly to the others here in the house are not allowed.

I do however try to be as considerate and concerned towards his feelings and finding out what it is that has made him angry, or has hurt him.

Would I be too far out on a limb to say that possibly he has self esteem issues? He gets really torn up when a kid is rude to him, or says something like they just dont want to play right now. He also has said that he cant do anything right, and that no one likes him (which I know to NOT be true, he does have friends, but he doesnt always treat them well, and sometimes they would rather not hang out with him) But for some reason we cannot get things into his head about how to behave socially, and not get angry and just blow up on your friends...etc.

We are very supportive of him, and I dont 'think' that we are giving him feelings of being inadequate. Could be that maybe I need to help him work on those issues?

 
Old 05-11-2007, 08:08 AM   #4
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Re: Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Marie, I agree with you, I would draw the line on those behaviors too. What you explained sounds plausible to me. I have been interested in people my whole life and why they do certain things and whenever I begin to understand why someone does something (and they too) it is always a different story for everyone. You all are just going to have to untangle his story. I have had to work through things with my own children (who are 6 and 8) when they needed help to understand why they were reacting certain ways and were upset. I have even had to understand how my behavior has affected them. Sounds like he just needs to learn how his behavior affects others and then their resultant behavior affects him. You might have to break it down into very small pieces in order for him to understand the connections and go over it with him a lot. "You seem to be upset now because of ..... well, before this person did what upset you, you did this which upset them.... Life is just a constant learning endeavor!

Last edited by Sannah; 05-11-2007 at 08:09 AM.

 
Old 05-11-2007, 10:29 AM   #5
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Re: Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Thank you for your reply. I have been considering going to therapy a little with him to try and mostly help ME figure out what to do, and how to handle him. Hubby thinks that might be a little too extreme...and I can only imagine the look my parents would give me if I told them we were going to therapy. He doesnt behave that way when he is with them...and they are totally biased anyhoo!

Thanks again, I will post again when something happens and how it went.

 
Old 05-11-2007, 10:52 AM   #6
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Re: Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Marie, that is a good attitude! Many parents take their children to a therapist and say "fix him" and don't think that they have any role in it. You know, you really don't have to tell your parents?

 
Old 05-11-2007, 02:35 PM   #7
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Re: Issues of anger/frustration/esteem with 9 yr old boy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sannah View Post
You know, you really don't have to tell your parents?
That is very true, but he is very close with them and I cannot imagine them not finding something like that out. We see them at least once a week, and he stays the night over there quite often.

It would not hamper my decision though...they are good grandparents. And I know they feel that hubby and I are doing a good job with the kids. I just have to laugh, I can hear the questions now..."theres nothing wrong' ....but they havent seen the temper flare up like I have!

Thanks for your help! I'll just have to play my cards right the next time he blows up and see what happens.

 
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