Thursday, April 19, 2018

Red Flag Behaviors - Responding To Clues Kids Aren't Coping

Experiencing stress is part of growing up. What happens when children feel overwhelmed by stress? If your child is under age six, the result is often a tantrum. They aren’t trying to misbehave. They simply have not developed better coping skills.

Older kids may also have meltdowns when they are flooded with strong feelings. They are developing better coping skills but may not have the presence of mind to use those skills.

All kids experience stress. Some turn to talking to friends while others try escaping with drugs. How are your kids coping with their stress?

Developing Healthy Coping Strategies

Your kids may feel pressure to do well at school, sports and other activities. They also have various social pressures with classmates, friends and family.

Since all kids need to handle stress, developing healthy strategies is important. What do your kids like to do to calm down? Some healthy ways kids cope with stress include:
  • Drawing or coloring
  • Listening to music
  • Playing an instrument
  • Meditating
  • Talking to someone
  • Exercising or going for a walk
  • Writing in a journal
  • Practicing a sport
  • Reading
Ideally your children have many healthy coping skills to choose from. Establishing a daily practice for dealing with stress is helpful.

Recognizing Unhealthy Coping Behaviors


When your kids are overextended or exhausted, their coping skills may start to crumble. Even though they were coping well a few days ago, they may not be able to do it today.

Some behaviors indicate potentially serious problems in coping with stress. It’s natural to want to minimize the possible consequences and hope that things will get better. Don’t all teens act like this? Isn’t this a phase that will soon pass?

What behaviors may indicate a problem? Red flag behaviors include:

(finish reading article on PricelessParenting.com)

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