When children or teens begin showing signs of anger management issues, it often leads to an immediate trip to therapy or counseling. All too often parents and caregivers may overlook that anger management is not simply a cry for help. They may feel that it is simply the child acting out or that there is an underlying secretive issue leading to the anger problems. In truth, the signs of anger management could be more. This is especially true in younger children and in teens. How could signs of anger management be more and what could these signs means if anger management is not the real issues?
It may seem a common deduction to say that signs of anger management are a sign of emotional distress. However, some signs of anger management are more than just slight emotional distress. They may actually be a sign of clinical depression and anxiety. In some cases, children may know they are depressed or that they have anxiety issues but may not be able to handle those issues or understand how to cope with them. In these cases, natural anger takes over due to frustration. This leads to angry outbursts and signs that could be mistaken as anger management issues.
Something that many families and caregivers do not want to face is a child who may have a mental disorder. If a mental disorder is present and that disorder has not been medically diagnosed or acknowledged, this could lead to frustration in the child or teen. The frustration of not understanding what is going on within their minds and body can lead to angry. The ongoing frustration can lead to common anger outbursts and signs of anger management issues. In some cases, it may be easier for a parent or caregiver to accept anger management as the underlying reason for outbursts rather than a mental disorder that could take years to diagnose and medication to maintain.
For some teens and children with signs of anger management, the underlying issue could be devastating. Emotional distress and mental disorders may be hard enough to deal with, but if abuse is the underlying issue the child may have more than just anger to deal with. In cases of mental, physical or sexual abuse a child may choose to hide the issue for weeks or years. During this time the abuse may continue and even progress as the child gets older. By the time the child has become a pre-teen or teenager the manifestation of the hidden abuse may have progressed to the point of emotional issues that can only be expressed through angry outbursts.
Frustration due to the secret they are hiding, the abuse their body is enduring and the mental anguish they are dealing with can combine into a large outburst of anger. This outburst of anger can be miscommunicated. As the outbursts continue and the signs of the hidden abuse go unnoticed the child can then turn to violent outbursts or to situations of hurting themselves. In these cases, anger management therapy may be recommended and a course of treatment given that would still ignore the problem.
To determine what the true issue behind the anger is, parents and caregivers should seek a qualified therapist. This type of therapist can determine the issues and determine what course of action to take if anger management is not the real problem.