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To Sam


Hi Sam, I wanted to write to you about anger.

At home I can get into trouble for something small(It sometimes stops here) and I will say something stupid like "What did I do?" (even though I usually know). Then I will get into trouble for that and then I will act smart and again say something stupid. Then getting into more trouble etc.

Then I will get angry at whatever consequence I get (Losing privileges etc.). Then will probably shout and say horrible things and hurt my family (usually my Mum or Dad) (kicking, hitting etc.) (also I have stopped know, the worst now is a barge, small push etc.) then lose more things. Eventually, I will go to my room like I have been told.

I had ELSA at Primary School and my Secondary school know. I don't have these 'outbursts' as often as many more. Also my Dad has depression (he takes medication) and I think my behaviour makes it worse. I find that I am quite shy, at school I am perfectly behaved and that I often struggle to get to sleep, could this be linked? I have ruined the majority of my childhood and I want to stop before I ruin my brother and sister's.

If you could help Sam, that would be appreciated. Thanks.

Ask Sam


Hi there,

Feelings and emotions can be confusing or difficult to understand. Sometimes they might cause you to feel out of control. Remember, anger is a natural emotion and there are ways to express it that won’t harm you or anyone else.

Your reactions might feel stronger than usual when you’re holding on to feelings from other situations. Anger can grow quickly and one way to manage it is to give yourself some time. Walk away from conflict or take a few slow breaths to try to calm down before you say or do anything.

You might first notice anger somewhere in your body, like your fists clenching or your pulse racing. Noticing the signs when you’re feeling angry can help you calm down quicker. Try 5 squeezes on a stress ball or count to 10 and take a deep breath. You’re less likely to react strongly if there’s a space between noticing how you’re feeling and what you do.  Even a few seconds can give you the chance to choose how to act next or react in a calmer way.

There are things you can do to stop things building up over time. Exercise is a great way to release energy, so you could try going for a run, a swim or a bike ride around three or four times a week. Lack of sleep can also affect your mood so you could get into a good routine by going to bed at the same time every night and switching off gadgets at least half an hour before bedtime. You can also read our 8 tips for better sleep.

Keep expressing your feelings before they become overwhelming by writing a journal or by drawing. You can always use the mood journal or art box on the Childline website for this. Try to talk about your feelings with people who care about you and let them know what you are struggling with so they can support you. You can also ask your school or GP about services that can help and talk to a Childline counsellor for support.

Thanks for sharing this with me, I hope it’s helped.

Take care.


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