How to Understand Your Child’s Aggressive Behavior

Katie Sweeney

If you spend time around little kids, chances are you’ve witnessed the following scenario: Your adorable little boy is running around playing one minute, and the next he’s screaming, trying to bite his sister, and punching the nanny at the same time. You can’t help but wonder, What is going on with him? Well, a new study from Duke University attempts to answer just that. Researchers studied more than a 1000 children and their parents in nine different countries over the course of four years. The universal pattern that they discovered? When a child feels threatened in any way, he or she will meet the threat with aggression. The review, which was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and originally discussed on Parents’ website, says that children who are hypersensitive to hostility from others are more likely to be violent. Another conclusion of the research is that children who are socialized to be defensive are also more likely to exhibit aggressive behavior. The moral of the story? Teach your kids the importance of the benefit of the doubt and to play offense, not defense.

Learn more about handling aggressive behavior in kids by reading Reham Amer’s book, Encourage Positive Behavior and Set Boundaries.

How do you deal with an aggressive child?

Explore: moms, Behavoir

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