First things first, it is not your fault.
Parents, much like children, get angry for a number of reasons, none of which have anything to do with you. When someone reaches the point of yelling or showing strong signs of anger, it is normally because they have been feeling sad, frustrated or stressed over a longer period of time.
Your parents might be acting impatient, seem distant, or say things that they don’t really mean, for reasons beyond your control. Maybe your parents are angry because of work, or maybe they are struggling to find work and it’s making leading to feeling of frustration and hopelessness; whatever the reason behind your parent’s anger, it is never acceptable that they take it out on you, or anyone else.
Anger vs. Aggression
It is important to differentiate the feeling of anger from the act of aggression. It is normal for both parents and children to get angry from time to time. In fact, Psychology Today suggests that anger is our natural reaction to confrontation as well as feelings of injustice or wrongdoing.
A strong emotion, anger can cause people to feel desperate and can initiate feelings of sadness, fear, or guilt. Left unaddressed, anger can also lead to damaged relationships, physical fights and substance abuse. Once anger turns into aggression, it is important to seek help.
What Can You Do?
If a parent doesn’t talk to you about what’s going on, it can be hard for you to understand the reasons behind their anger. If you don’t know the cause of your parent’s anger, it’s hard to know how to support them.
The best thing for you to do if your parents get angry is to remain calm. Sometimes your parents just need some quiet time, or sometimes they might like to talk about what is bothering them. Here are some great tips from the American Psychological Association on understanding, and treating, people with anger.
If anger turns into aggression, or if your parents have been verbally or physically abusive, it is important to reach out and ask for help.