My child is aggressive, what should I do in a crisis?

My child is aggressive, what should I do in a crisis?

Traffic light: Aggression

Stay alert:

My child is getting more and more angry over time, what should I do?

Take steps:

My child is getting into trouble with their anger outbursts, what should I do?


My child is aggressive and out of control, what should I do immediately?

Stay calm and ask your child if they would like to talk? Stay calm and be supportive, kind and understanding. Listen and make them feel they are not alone Stay safe, even if this means romoving yourself. Call emergency services and keep talking to them till they arrive
Ask them what they are feeling or what happened to make them feel like it? Ask if they would like to talk to someone If you are with your child – keep calm and remember Less is More. Speak less and just have a calm presence. Too much talking will confuse and anger your child more
They may need to calm down when they are angry before they can talk. Remember not to try and talk when they are having strong feelings, they will need to calm down first. When they have strong feelings, they may need some space just to calm down Remove anything dangerous from the vacinity
Don’t get angry, anxious or defensive, stay calm and let them know you would like to understand and help and that you do not judge them Contact your GP and ask for a referral to CAMHS or private child and mental health specialist If you or other members of your family are at risk, call the police
Young people can find it hard to manage strong feelings – this is normal If your child is reluctant to attend the appointment, then attend it yourself

Based on MindEd

Resources to help prevent crisis:

  • Anger management record which you and your child can discuss at the end of each day (See below)
  • Contact the practice manager in Stepping Stones clinic to get our “Coping Skills for Emotional Emergencies App” that your child could download to help him/her cope

Anger management record: