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Behind Teen Anger: Helping Your Teen Return to a Happy, Eager Life

Behind Teen Anger: Helping Your Teen Return to a Happy, Eager Life


Behind Teen Anger: Helping Your Teen Return to a Happy,

Eager Life


It is natural for everyone to get angry at times, especially teens. Adolescence can be a rough road to travel. It is a time when brains are still going through maturation and neuronal changes. This is also the critical time for discovering and developing a sense of self or identity. Teens’ world is growing beyond their homes and small circles of friends, and social and academic pressures can mount, leaving them confused and overwhelmed.

Under such pressure, it is common for teens to react with anger. They may wrestle with their own thoughts. They may rebel against their parents or anyone in authority, as they sense the effort to control them. When they feel helpless and confused, they may express these feelings in ways that could be self-destructive.

Not all is lost, though, especially with your support and help. At this time, parental tenacity can make a difference in how well a teen bounces back from an emotional condition or issue that manifests as anger. Don’t discount their need for professional help.


The Many Forms of Teen Anger

While anger is normal, it can be a worrisome emotion if it is making your adolescent child behave in an unacceptable manner. According to PsychCentral, “It may be expressed as indignation and resentment … Some teens may repress their anger and withdraw; others may be more defiant and destroy property.”

If you are watching out for red flags and you think your child is just a misbehaving teen, keep in mind that it can be manifested in other ways. “Teen anger takes many forms.” It can be expressed through negative behavior such as sarcasm or verbal abuse, antisocial manners, social withdrawal, malicious gossip, addiction, or psychosomatic pain. Just like the usual forms of anger, these manifestations can disrupt a teen’s relationships, emotions, and health.

Regardless of how the anger is expressed, these manifestations tell you that there is something wrong and that your child needs professional attention or help. Suppressing your teen’s anger will only make the problem worse, and it can also mislead you. Acting early to respond to your teenager’s anger is important. Professional therapy can help them enjoy a normal adolescence.


Just the Tip of the Iceberg

Anger can be expressed in various forms, but often the real issue isn’t anger. Teen anger could just be the “tip of the iceberg,” so to speak—an “outward expression that gives voice to other more vulnerable emotions. Just as the visible tip of the iceberg above the water belies the extensive mass of ice beneath, so too anger is the visible demonstration of other emotions such as helplessness, fear, sadness, or worthlessness.”

The part of the brain that processes emotions develops ahead of the rational frontal cortex. Thus, it is natural for teenagers to interpret an event, occurrence, or stimulus more instinctively than logically, compared to adults. In cases like these, helping them rationalize or interpret stimuli or events can be of immense help.

If teen anger is being triggered by an emotional condition (depression, anxiety, mood disorder, etc.) or a serious emotional issue (excessive grief, low self-esteem, guilt or shame, etc.), it is best that therapy is sought. Emotional/behavioral conditions usually don’t just go away without intervention, therapy or treatment. If you want your teenager to feel better, tracing the underlying roots of the condition is vital, so they can be properly treated.


Toward a Healthy Expression of Feelings  

Anger isn’t a behavior, but an emotion. It is usually triggered by an issue, a set of complicated issues, or an emotional condition. The manifestations may continue or get worse if the anger is ignored or trivialized. If your child is expressing anger in a form that’s unhealthy and ruining their relationships, stop it in its tracks before it overwhelms them. Seek the help of an independent professional contracted with Carolina Counseling Services — Pinehurst, NC.

With therapy, the roots of teen anger can be evaluated, along with other manifestations. If an emotional condition is behind the emotion, a treatment program can be developed to address their needs. If it is the teen’s way of responding to life events, they can be helped with proper intervention, so they can resolve their issues. 

Parenting angry teens can challenge and disrupt your life too. To succeed in helping your teen, you need to be resilient. Marie Hartwell-Walker of PsychCentral says, “The difference between the families that make it and those that don’t is parental tenacity.” She also says, “Parents … who continue to express love and concern, who continue to insist on knowing where their kids are going and with whom, who include their teens in family events, and who stubbornly refuse to give up are the parents who generally manage to save their kids.”

Indeed, “it takes a community to raise a child.” When anger stands in the way of your teen’s happiness, call Carolina Counseling Services — Pinehurst, NC. Start now to help your teen return to a happy life.


Serving Areas: Carolina Counseling Services – Pinehurst, NC

Counties: Moore county, NC, Lee County, Hoke County, Chatham County

Areas: Pinehurst NC, West End NC, Taylortown NC, Seven Lakes NC, Eagle Springs NC, Jackson Springs NC, Foxfire NC, Candor NC, Norman NC, Ellerbe NC, Rockingham NC

Zip Codes: 27281, 27376, 28315, 28347, 28350, 28373, 28374, 28387, 28388, 28394

Kelly ErkenBrack, LCSW

Specializes in: (Ages 3+) Children, Teens, Adults, Couples and Families. Anxiety, Depression, Grief and Loss, Mood Disorders, Trauma, Adjustments and Life Transitions, ADHD, Behavioral Issues, Parenting, Relationship Concerns, Self Esteem
Insurance: BCBSTricare Prime/Select, Medicare and Cash
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Location: Pinehurst, NC

Robin Caswell, MSW, LCSW

Specializes in: (Ages 5+), Individuals, Adults, Anxiety, Depression, Grief, Loss, ADHD, ODD, Trauma/PTSD, LGBTQ, Self-Harm, Military Family Life, Mood Disorders, OCD, Phobias
Insurance: BCBS, Tricare, Medicare and Cash
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Location: Pinehurst, NC

Counseling Information

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Carolina Counseling Services – Pinehurst, NC

45 Dowd Circle Suite 5
PinehurstNC 28374

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Fayetteville, NC 28311