Oppositional Defiant Children: When is it enough?
Many children go through a rebellious stage where every word from parents is met with defiance and resistance. Some ages are particularly marked by this behavior; this is how the term “terrible twos” got coined, and this is why no one is surprised when teen agers make it known that adults “don’t understand”. However, when a child is constantly angry, belligerent, and prone to heated arguments, it is time to see if a more serious behavioral issue exists.
Is it Oppositional Defiant Disorder?
Give the passionate arguments that children can sometimes get into, it is sometimes difficult to determine when a child’s behavior can be classified as Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). There are some indicators that will show you that a child needs help.
Usually, children with ODD have frequent temper tantrums, and angry outbursts. They argue excessively with adults, and they refuse to abide by anything that seems like a rule or a request. They constantly blame others when things don’t go well – including mishaps that are actually their fault. They have difficulty getting along with their peers.
Children with ODD often deliberately annoy or upset others, but they themselves are often touchy and easily annoyed. In addition, children with ODD can be vindictive and spiteful. When the ODD is mild, children may have tantrums and displays of vindictiveness and rebellion only in one setting. Children with moderate ODD will show symptoms in at least two settings, while children with severe ODD will show symptoms in at least three settings.
Many parents fail to seek the support they need when their children have ODD because they think the meltdowns, the tantrums, and the hostility will just go away. However, if you see all of these symptoms in your child, every now and then, you probably feel that you are at your wits’ end.
Assessing your Options
When children have ODD, most parents will try to “handle” things by themselves because they are assuming this is all part of a difficult phase that will just go away. Some parents will ignore the behavior, thinking that attention will merely reinforce it. Some parents will impose discipline, exhausting themselves as the child continues to oppose them at every turn.
If your child has ODD, you have probably tried both approaches and seen them fail, but you don’t need to keep trying to solve things alone. Call Carolina Counseling Services at Fuquay Varina and you will have the support needed to help your child.
Carolina Counseling Services at Fuquay Varina contracts with licensed professionals who will provide the counseling and therapy needed to help your child overcome the constant anger and resentment that comes with Oppositional Defiant Disorder. Your call will be a giant step towards enabling your child to be a happy and emotionally healthy person.
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