A tricky emotion.
Anger is a tricky emotion when you’re a mom. There will always be moments when you feel the anger overflow in your body and you lose your temper. We wouldn’t be human if we did not express disappointment, upset or frustration in front of our children. Shame and guilt (so much guilt!) are often the fallouts of losing our temper with our kids. You may ask how could you lose your temper at a child? What if they remember how mad you were? What if they never forgive you? All thoughts that can bring you down when you’re already having a bad day.
I love to talk about feelings in my practice. I love when moms are authentic and real with me— being a mom is hard and amazing all at the same time and I am happy to be on this journey with you.
There are many resources available if you’re looking for guidance with anger as a mom. Look for resources through your health region, as this is often the most evidence based source of information and may be free of charge.
“Tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it…”
Consider these tips as well when you’re wondering if other moms are going through the same experience.
5 Tips for Coping with Anger
1. Think about how you grew up and what you perceive as a “good mom”.
Is a “good” mom one that is always on the ball, always has perfect hair and clothes and makeup? Maybe always says the perfect thing at the perfect time? Maybe you don’t feel like a “good mom” when you feel angry. Try writing down what you want your kids to learn from you. This can help put it in perspective when you feel like every mom on Instagram has it together. Often we are our own worst critics.
2. Try not to take it personal.
You baby does not intentionally make you exhausted, although sometimes it may seem like a fun game they play. Rationally, we all know this they aren’t out to get you, but sometimes at night when they cry for hours we may start to take it personally. Every mom has days and nights when they just have no idea what baby wants, and that’s okay! Its okay to feel frustrated that you can’t translate baby crying in to English. And its okay to feel angry that you are holding up your eyes with toothpicks.
You’ve got this….
Maybe you feel anxious around large crowds or you know you are more on edge when your kids are sick. Anxiety often translates to anger and it can be scary to understand. Knowing what can trigger anxiety can often head off the anger before it happens. For example, if going to the zoo makes you feel overwhelmed— bring a few extra hands with you when you go so you aren’t alone. Or go at a time of day that is less busy. Knowing where anger starts can help manage it before it happens.
4. Be honest with your feelings.
Even if you have a newborn and you feel frustrated, its okay to apologise to him! Its okay and actually a wonderful habit to get in to as moms, especially as kids get older. Teaching our children that it is normal to make mistakes, feeling emotion is healthy— even anger— and its okay to say you will try harder next time. What has happened has happened. One of the most important things kids can learn from their parents is that they’re human and make mistakes.
5. Ask for help.
You know your limits. When the anger just won’t stop overflowing, it may be time to reach out. Asking for help is a powerful lesson to teach your kids. Kids deserve a happy home and you can absolutely provide that for them— so reaching out for more coping strategies is a great tool that they can take forward in to their lives as well. Also to keep in mind, safety is always a first priority. Your baby can cry secure in their crib for a few minutes while you take a few breathes and call a friend and cool down.
There are often parenting classes available in your community if you’re looking for positive parenting techniques. Bottom line is you’re not alone. We have all been there, and there are so many people who feel exactly the same way you do.