Anger management and Play Therapy

Child Centred Play Therapy works with the child’s anger by looking at the whole person of the child.  We listen to what has happened and what is currently happening to them in life. When a child has a lot of anger, it is possible that something is not right in their inner world.

Teaching children to control their anger doesn’t really do anything about the anger itself.  In Play Therapy, we work with the child’s inner world, if this is the issue.  We hear their anger.  That way, when the child’s anger dimishes, it will be because the troubles in their inner world have been worked through.  They no longer need the anger to tell us that things are not right.

In other words, Play Therapists don’t “do anger management” in the commonly accepted sense of the word.  However, Play Therapy can be very effective in dimishing anger in children and helping them to learn to self-regulate their emotions in an age appropriate way.  It is unlikely to be less effective that teaching a child anger management strategies, particularly for the very young.

At Perth Children’s Counselling, we also teach parents ways to work with a child’s anger.  Reflective listening is a way of being with a child that ultimately works towards children learning to self-regulate, and does not rely on formal teaching of anger management strategies.

1 Comment
  1. My child has problems controlling his anger when playing sport and can not self regulate. He is 8.
    He gets aggressive and abusive and lashes out physically as well as verbally.

    After the incident he is sorry and realises it is wrong but can not self regulate during the incident – he goes into a rage.

    What would you recommend?

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Perth Children's Counselling is a registered member of PACFA,
the peak body for Counsellors and Psychotherapists.
Registration Number: 22407