Public Meltdowns – adult temper tantrms

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A father threw a temper tantrum in our office today.
I know his time is valuable but our patients are valuable and precious to us.
I love my patients each and every one of them.

The following is abstracted from an article which appeared in the Wall Street Journal

With the holiday season in full swing, so are angry meltdowns in department stores, restaurants, airports and just about anywhere else, really. People are exhausted, stressed out and worried about money. Many don’t have good coping skills to begin with at any time of year.

People get angry for any number of reasons, of course. Many are so stressed that any slightly upsetting incident in their day sets them off.

“Anger is a protective response to a perceived hurt,” “If you are overwhelmed and something comes out of the blue, for you it’s going to feel like a threat.”

Many people may be in denial about how mad they get. When we get angry, the emotional center of the brain has a much greater influence than the part that governs conscious thinking. And some experts believe that the angrier we become, the less aware we may be of it.

MANAGING ANGER: WHEN IT ISN’T YOURS

How do you keep a someone’s tantrums from ruining your relationship? Here are some tips from the experts:

Don’t be silent. Ignoring the bad behavior enables it. And withdrawal makes the angry person feel judged, says Joe James, a psychologist and anger-management specialist.
Validate the feelings, not the behavior. ‘Say, I understand that you are really upset. You are not validating their reaction; you are validating their emotion. And it is the quickest way to disarm them.’
Explain later why the behavior upsets you. Were you embarrassed? Irritated that an evening out was ruined? Frustrated that the situation caused delays? Say, ‘I love you but it’s hard for me to be supportive of you when you handle a situation like that.’
Ask open-ended questions. How does the person feel about her behavior? Is she under stress? Try to understand what’s going on.
Change your own behavior. Stop upholding your end of the relationship until the bad behavior stops. ‘As soon as one person begins to change, the dance has to change. The shift always happens when you change yourself, not the other person.’

This Loved One Will Explode in Five, Four …This Loved One Will Explode in Five, Four …
By ELIZABETH BERNSTEIN
Dec. 13, 2010

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