While it’s natural for everyone to be upset or frustrated or angry every once in a while, it’s not okay to always be in an angry state of mind.
If you live with someone who has anger issues, it can take a big toll on your mental and emotional health – especially if it’s a parent or carer.
Parents and carers are the people who are supposed to look after you so if you don’t feel safe in their presence or are constantly on edge, worrying about their next outburst, it can leave you feeling very anxious all the time.
However, there are some things you can do to improve your home life:
1. Protect yourself
Shield yourself from their anger wherever possible. Spend time at your friends’ houses and if you’re old enough, get a part time job or volunteer at a local soup kitchen or charitable organisation.
2. Stay out of the house when you can
Take up after-school activities or hobbies to distract yourself from what is going on at home and to spend more time out of the house.
3. Say how you feel
Ask your parent why they are angry. Depending on the situation, they might not even realise that they are shouting or that their words or actions are upsetting you.
4. Know the triggers
Try to understand their behaviour and know the triggers. For example, if your parent is irritable with you when they come home from work, it might be because they’ve had a stressful day and now have to face into household chores like cleaning or making dinner. Once you’re aware of this, you’ll know to avoid asking them questions at this time.
5. Write things down
If things are very bad at home, keep a written diary of each time your parent is abusive towards you. Detail the ‘who, what, where, when, how and why’ of the situation but make sure to keep it somewhere safe, preferably outside your home so your parent won’t find it.
6. Talk to someone
Talk to someone. If you’re worried about yourself and/or your siblings, it’s understandable to be afraid to speak to in a government organisation. Start by speaking to an aunt, uncle, teacher, grandparent or other trusted adult in your life.
7. Contact Childline
If you don’t have a trusted adult around you, contact Childline by phone (1800 66 66 66), free text (50101) or by live web chat on childline.ie. We will never judge or tell you what to do but we will listen, believe and help you come to a decision that’s right for you.