Parenting is testing on the best of days. Rewarding too, of course, but we all have those moments and days where we are just on edge, snappy and prone to different degrees of angry outbursts. Have you ever stopped to self analyze and ask yourself why you’re so angry? A little reflection can give some perspective and bring more connection with our children. Here are 5 reasons why you may be an angry mother!
Taking child behavior personally
When your child is being defiant or disobedient, do you take it personally and get angry? Many times we subconsciously feel that a moody child’s defiance is aimed at us, as an insult to our authority, or that defiance and disobedience are signs that we aren’t perfect parents. Neither are necessarily true! When anger rises take a moment to ask yourself if you really should be taking this personally, or whether it’s just a normal part of childhood to be testing limits, and expressing frustration with parents or siblings.
Parental burn out
If you’re overreacting to everyday situations a bit more than you usually do, take a look at your energy levels and mental health. Do you need a break? Make time often for me-time, where you can be alone, and do what rejuvenates you. Ideas include sleeping, being in nature, reading a novel or meeting with a friend. We all get burned out at some point, and for our own sake, as well as those around us, we need that special break away to regroup and get restored. Prioritize yourself and make sure you are topped up often!
If you are prone to freaking out when there is a lot of visual mess, you’re being touched too often/much or things are just too loud, you could have a sensory processing disorder to some degree. Acknowledging sensory sensitivity can be some of the most liberating knowledge to have. To know that it’s ‘normal’ to be seriously bugged by mess, or noise, for example, is really freeing, as you then can take steps to decrease the occurrence of those sensitivities. Sometimes our expectations are very different to real life parenting, and that’s normal and okay!
Preoccupation with Personal Issues
If you find yourself snapping in anger at your kids, while stewing in your mind over a personal issue, bear in mind that those little ones in front of you are on the receiving end of some anger that’s just misplaced! Whether your stress is over finances, conflict in your marriage or other personal stress, be sure to take some time out to identify what is causing your stress. Try to write it down, isolate it in your mind from your daily interactions with your child, and make a point of looking at it with intent at a later time. Disconnecting yourself from your brooding thoughts while you are with your little ones will ensure you keep your stress to a minimum, and your words and actions kind.
Stress of Running Late
Sometimes we need to just slow down! It’s easy to forget just how little our kids are. They process things slowly and they need extra time to get ready. They get distracted easily. We sometimes overestimate how much responsibility we place on them, especially if they are the oldest child. If you know you are going to need to be somewhere at a certain time, and that running late angers you, prepare in advance so that your anger isn’t triggered. Help kids prep their clothes beforehand. Cater in extra time for flower picking, bug distractions or sibling arguments. Do whatever is necessary so that regardless of what happens, you will still make it on time. And don’t forget that extra bit of patience with our sweet littlies! We forget sometimes that they aren’t adults.
What we need to remember as parents of young kids, is that angry outbursts will not teach our kids anything constructive. They learn from our example! What we need more of overall and will be most effective in raising self controlled kids, is a good balance of positive discipline, consistency in behavior and reactions to our kids and constructive character education.
What ways do you get triggered into feeling angry? How do you deal with it? We’d love to know!