“My child acts very agressive towards other kids. Is he/she really mean?”(Concerned Parents)
Every school year, I hear about a child pushing, grabbing, hitting and even spitting at other children. Parents concerned that “while they never taught their child how to act this way,” they still feel “blamed for parenting that type of child,” and “concerned of what will become of their child.”
Rightfully so, we all want loving and compassionate children. The very actions we are speaking about are Movements. The act of moving away or towards another. The child is either giving back a feeling he/she is experiencing or taking/moving away from a feeling/experience he/she doesn’t want.
In the therapeutic setting, I can educate about the brain on stress and our primary “4 F” responses (Fight, Flight, Freeze, Faint). And then, I can model for the child how to keep his/her body feeling secure and safe with a shield rather than a weapon.
The child taps each part of the body, pretending to put on his/her safety security suit. Think about kleets, shin pads, helmet, etc. Each touch incorporates deep breathing. Then we practice our secure stance. Placing our body upright and firm we stand our ground, we practice finding a safe space, using our facial expressions to encourage more or demand less. The child senses their sensory system, acknowledging the feeling of weightedness in each foot, lighteness in the fingers, and quickness of his/her facial muscles smiling.
The movements are choices that the child learns he/she may control. The child discovers that he/she is not agressive but rather secure and safe!
Have you acknowledged how your child’s body communicates safety and support? Everyday I work with children of all ages and their families to help make meaningful connections and increased communication! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at (310) 966-0700 to schedule your time.
Please Note: These stories are based on real moments but all names, ages, and identifying information has been changed to ensure confidentiality and safety for all individuals involved. The events are a composite of related scenarios used to illustrate the work; bringing understanding to the benefits of supporting children through a mind/body connection.