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The truth about screaming at kids

Many of us get frustrated. Kids are incredibly frustrating. Life is incredibly frustrating. Frustrating drives attacking energy, so wanting to snap somebody's head off, scream and hit things. This is all part of indicating we are frustrated. It really is how we handle our frustration. We try to stop screaming, but it's likely we won't be able to do this because we are battling against symptoms, no more than if you to tell a small child; it's not going to work. It is good to have the intention not to scream, but it alarms the child and the child feels it. It's attacking and it hurts their feelings, but it's not enough. The key is to being able to deal with our frustration lies within dealing with the things in our life that we cannot change. We are meant to be transformed by that which we cannot change. Mad is meant to move to sad. If it's not moving enough in our life or in our kids lives, that mad doesn't move to sad, about anything that happens in our lives. The other thing that we find ourselves in the middle of our conflicting impulses. Part of us wants to yell at the child, and part of us loves the child and doesn't want to hurt the child. If we find ourselves in the middle of this, our prefrontal cortex, makes us much more civilized attacking impulses over what we cannot change in our lives. When you do feel the sadness, it transforms you. You feel much less inclined to strike out or to bite your child's head off.

Gordon Neufeld, PhD Child Development Psychologist and Author, explains for parents how screaming at kids can negatively affect them and why it is important to control the frustration


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Gordon Neufeld, PhD

Psychologist & Author

Dr. Gordon Neufeld is a Vancouver-based developmental psychologist with over 40 years of experience with children and youth and those responsible for them. A foremost authority on child development, Dr. Neufeld is an international speaker, a bestselling author, Hold On to Your Kids and a leading interpreter of the developmental paradigm. Dr. Neufeld has a widespread reputation for making sense of complex problems and for opening doors for change. While formerly involved in university teaching and private practice, he now devotes his time to teaching and training others, including educators and helping professionals. His Neufeld Institute is now a worldwide organization devoted to applying developmental science to the task of raising children. Dr. Neufeld appears regularly on radio and television. He is a father of five and a grandfather of three.

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