Understanding dysregulation and how you can help your child and yourself
I'm a great believer in this approach 🧡.
And believe me, I learnt the hard way because I wasn't aware of this information for a few years😢.
When a child becomes defensive, angry or upset about something how many of us persevere talking to them to try and get them to listen, and even admit responsibility for their actions?
Visions of statements such as, 'calm down now!', 'stop talking back to me!', 'do not walk away from me when I'm talking to you!' all pop into my head, ones I used on numerous occasions in the past 😔.
❓ How many of us then become frustrated as feelings of disrespect, impatience and then anger start to escalate as our child becomes even more upset, talking back with attitude or stomping off in a rage?
Whether it be that he/she has been caught misbehaving, or something else has upset them, when that 'red mist' comes down little will get through to them.
❌ The result? Both parent and child end up with feelings of anger, hurt, frustration and other heightened emotions.
If you are a parent who is trying to hold it together this type of situation can be very triggering and a tipping point to exhibiting behaviour you do not want to.
💡The solution? Give yourself and your child some space, help them regulate. Get yourself regulated. You are NOT letting them off with anything, you are simply allowing your child to calm down so you can calmly deal with whatever has happened.
Relate to how they are feeling; tell your child that you see they are upset and you are there for them. Depending on your child, their personality and how they best respond gently remind them of the soothing methods that you know work for them e.g. lying down for a few minutes, using their punchbag, going outside into the garden.
This also goes for you! If you are finding yourself getting angry, tell your child that you are upset at the moment and you need a little time to calm down and you will talk about things shortly. Implement your own self-soothing methods and get yourself regulated so you are best placed to support and teach your child.
✔️ Once both of you have calmed down you will both be in a better state to calmly discuss the issue. Prepare yourself with the hows and whys if they have misbehaved, and, if appropriate implement your reasonable related consequence that your child will have known about beforehand. (We usually cover these in our family manifesto). e.g. in our house if one child hits or kicks their sibling they know it is an instant red card and their tablet privilege will be removed for a day.
💡If you're finding yourself in daily battles with your children and yelling at them several times a day, try this for a few weeks and see if it helps. Just make sure you explain the approach to your children beforehand so they are aware about what to expect.
If you would like some support or advice on how to self-soothe or how to implement this method please just PM the page 🙏.