Oh my goodness, we have all worked with a child who just seems to react to everything in a negative way. They fight with siblings and are rude and resistant to caregivers, teachers and other adults. They frustrate us and become even more obstinate when we get angry.
But hold on. The truth is, something is driving this behavior. When we stop to consider that it may not simply be a child not wanting to do what we ask, we may discover that their are much more complicated things going on.
When we are able to see that a child is feeling anxious, we should be able to change the situation and change the behavior! This article in The Inquirer Daily News, the author, Julie Furst, a child and adolescent psychiatry fellow, shares her experiences with childhood anxiety.
We see it a lot. Caregivers are at a loss as to how to deal with difficult behaviors. When we talk with them, we often discover that the behaviors happen in very specific situations that may be triggers for a child’s anxiety. This is especially true when working with children who have suffered trauma. They may find transitions/change of any type very scary. They may seem to always want things ‘their way’. It may be that this is the only way that things feel safe to them. When we understand that the behaviors are ‘fear driven’ we are able to address them in a very different way.
Work with horses can be a very powerful way to address anxiety issues. Our clients learn and practice self-soothing/self-calming strategies. They discover that they can set boundaries that keep them safe. Their self-confidence grows as they begin to see themselves as ‘leaders’. And, we help caregivers develop the tools they need to manage the behaviors as well.
If you know a child struggling with behavior issues, you may want to consider what is at the bottom of the behaviors and seek the help you need. We are here to be a part of a comprehensive treatment plan. We would be happy to schedule a visit to the ranch. We will show you around, introduce our wonderful horses, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help. Call or email today!