Bad behaviour in children

Bad behaviour in children. I am frequently asked by concerned, committed, parents to help interpret their child’s confusing and sometimes confrontational behaviour.

When a young person‘s behaviour becomes dysregulated or manifests what might be termed misbehaviour, the first thing that a parent might wonder is whether the child is feeling safe.

The following might cause a child to feel unsafe and so manifest challenging behaviour:

1, uncertainty about the future or a change or threat in their environment.
2, misunderstanding or misperception of the behaviour of an attachment figure
3, a distressed parent who is less available physically or psychologically
4, discipline at school or at home has involved relationship withdrawal or seclusion
5, changes developmentally are producing self-doubt and anxiety
6, Peer conflict or a recent loss due to moving, divorce or death
7, The family’s make-up changes

Communication with our children is key. We are interested in, and nonjudgemental about, the inner world of our children. Their inner world is welcomed and respected not evaluated, criticised or shown indifference to. In this way a young person is helped and encouraged to express emotions, wishes, thoughts and intentions.
We need our children to be self-aware with independence of thought so they are able to process their environment accurately and know what is good and bad for them when they leave our care.
When we take a nonjudgemental interest in what is happening in their emotional and psychological world, our children experience that their world is interesting, valuable and navigable.
It’s like learning to ride a bike. We take care and interest in selecting the right bike, showing them the activity and how to do it safely.

They learn it is possible and fun and pretty soon they work out they can do it all on their own.