It is very common for adolescents to interact with different kinds of people. There will be various situations that require your teen to deal with his or her emotions. As a youngster continues to grow up, personal conflict as well as difficult situations with other people may be hard to handle. This is one of the leading causes of violent crime not only in the United States, but all across the world.
As the parent of your young teen, you want to help him or her understand that it is possible to deal with frustration and anger without being a violent person. It may not always be easy given the fact that most teens today are quite headstrong and determined to do things on their own. However, it is always better to present prevention tactics while they are still young. Once they grow accustomed to the violent approach, it will be more than difficult to change their ways. Nevertheless, being the authoritative figure in their life should empower you to guide them accordingly, along with the fact that your son or daughter’s future is in your hands.
Understanding Violent Crime in Teenagers
Before you talk to your teen and demonstrate how to deal with anger, you should have a much deeper understanding regarding violent crime aside from its definition. Here are some of the most important statistics connected with violence in young people:
- According to statistics, there are almost 16 million teenagers who have experienced or at least witnessed some form of assault.
- In the United States, at least one out of eight murder victims is below 18 years old.
- The television shows that your child watches play a role in their behavior development. This is why you should always be vigilant in the shows that they watch, especially those that present violence and aggressive behavior.
- The sad fact is that most of the violence and death that occur around the world involve people who know each other.
- Children born in a violent family will most likely acquire the traits of his or her parents or relatives.
- If you have a gun at home, records have shown that it is more dangerous to family members than to intruders. This is because this gun will most likely be used to kill a member of the family rather than a burglar or other bad persons.
As you begin to understand the underlying reasons as well as the statistics showing the amount of violence related to young people, you can begin to talk to your child. Often, you will see signs that your child has a tendency to be rash when making decisions, especially when he or she is angry. This is actually the best time for you to step up and become a responsible parent. Here are the signs as well as the background of a child that usually becomes violent when growing up:
- Has shown outbursts and tantrums that cannot be controlled.
- Typically resorts to cursing, name calling, and other abusive language to express feelings.
- Threatens people whenever angry or displeased.
- Brings a weapon to a public place such as school.
- Has made a record of serious disciplinary problems; not only in schools but also in the community.
- Has issues with drug use or alcohol abuse.
- Does not have a lot of friends or only has a few. Rather spends more time with friends than study or do other activities at home.
- Loves explosives and other devices that can cause fires.
- Has been expelled or suspended from school.
- Does not show affection to animals, but is actually cruel to them even when there are people around.
- Has bullied or has been bullied by other individuals.
- Does not acknowledge fault; rather, he or she blames other people when something bad happens.
- Prefers to watch movies or shows that display violence, and listens to music that expresses anger as well as books that present abuse.
- When writing an essay at school, talks about frustration or anger.
- A member of an antisocial group or a gang.
Most teens who have attempted suicide or has threatened about it may also become violent.
What Parents Can Do About Their Misbehaving Teen
If your young adult is showing signs that he or she is an angry person or is already violent, do not be afraid. It is still very much possible to stop this kind of behavior. Here are some of the proven ways that will help your child understand that violence is never the answer:
- The first step is to sit down and have a serious talk with your teen. You can explain that fights are normal, but these arguments can be solved without being aggressive.
- You can team up with other people in the community, particularly the parents, so that you can help reduce violence in your area.
- If your teen is in a frustrating situation and feels the need to resort to violence, convince him or her to talk about it with other people. Most kids today find it difficult to share their personal feelings with their parents, but you can still persuade your teen to trust you.
- One of the hardest parts of disciplining your child is the decision to limit the amount of TV that your teen watches as well as the amount of time spent playing video games. Most of them will respond angrily, which is why you should be even firmer. Do not be swayed by the tantrums and fury since this kind of behavior is exactly the reason why you are limiting their media intake anyway.
Finally, the best way to handle the situation is to become a role model for your child. You should be able to show that problems can be handled in nonviolent ways. Therefore, you should not hit or shout at your growing teenager. You can set rules and regulations firmly, but this does not mean that you have to shout when you make him or her understand the situation as well as the consequences.
Sources: http://www.pamf.org/parenting-teens/emotions/violence/violence.html http://www.teenhelp.com/teen-violence/teen-violence-statistics.html http://crime.about.com/od/juvenile/a/violent_students.htm http://crime.about.com/od/juvenile/a/juvenile_vics.htm http://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/youthviolence/stats_at-a_glance/vca_temp-trends.html