Scream. Stomp. Slam. Quiet.
A fun morning of fort-building with her brother descended into a fight over duct tape, and my daughter fled to her room in tears. While I left her alone for a moment, I remembered a conversation I had with Dr. Marc Brackett, Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. While adults often need wide space to recover when they are in a bad mood, he said, you always have to follow up with kids. They are still learning how to understand and manage their emotions, and it is a parent’s “moral obligation to know what your child is feeling and to support them in developing healthy strategies.”
When I knocked and walked into my daughter’s room, all of her pillows and stuffed animals had been thrown to the floor. It was a good reflection of what was happening on the inside: an emotional storm was passing through! I knew once the storm passed — and it did — I could help her talk through what had happened.
Deborah Farmer Kris is a senior parenting columnist at Intrepid Ed News. This piece was originally published on PBS KIDS on Aug. 13, 2020. Click here to read the rest of the article.