Child ADHD Counseling and Family Counseling Phoenix Arizona

Parenting defiant, angry, passive aggressive, ADHD, ADD, and developmentally and emotionally off balance children and teens can be challenging to the point a parent wants to pull their hair out and scream on a daily basis as well as cry. The good news is there support for your child and you can play a role in changing your child’s behavior. Many times we blame ourselves or we personalize our child’s inappropriate behaviors, however, it is vital to keep in mind many times it is about their own pain, their own stress and their own challenges that are spilling out onto their beloved family. As parents we can learn skills to manage and balance our relationship with our children and teens to create harmony and peace and best outcomes. David w Lifeworks AZ has been working with children and family issues for over fifteen years and you can read more about what people are saying about him at

A majority of parents tend to misinterpret their child’s behavior and end up feeling irritated , frustrated, annoyed, angry and sad.

Many children have stress and traumatic events that can be family fighting, emotional issues, abuse of any type, neglect, changing schools, divorce, bullying etc that cause so much stress it would be considered trauma and your child can not cope with the stress and this looks like negative behaviors, however, it is simply that your child is overwhelmed and can not regulate his mood, emotions, or behaviors. 

Young children can be impacted greatly by trauma since they can not discuss and verbalize the memory and this can impact their well being into adulthood.

Repetitive traumatic events ( stressors) have ore impact on a child then one isolated event according to most research .

Having a positive relationship with ones caregiver is important in recovering from trauma and stressors as a child or teen.

Children that have strong coping skills and high self esteem can be more resilient and recover more rapidly from stressful events.

Parenting a child that has had trauma at home will likely impact your child’s behavior and it is important to look at your child as a good child that is in great pain and has had difficult challenges in his or her life instead of looking at your child as a “ bad kid” this is HUGE!!!!!!!

Children with stress and trauma backgrounds may become aggressive , defiant, and may disobey or lie and many other behaviors  due to lack of trust and more. Many times there behavior is a learned response to stress and it will take time to unlearn the unhealthy way of coping stress. Children and teens can learn healthy ways to cope with stress and so can parents. There are many techniques and strategies. Some of the strategies and skills are listed on my web site: , however, there are hundreds of techniques and skills that can be helpful for a child as well as a parent.

Some behaviors that can come from stress and traumatic events include: inability to pay attention it may look like ADD or ADHD, being withdrawn, difficulty going from one activity to the next, fighting with peers or adults, change in school performance, eating more or less than peers, getting in trouble at school and at home, body aches, refusal to follow the rules at home or at school, sleeping all the time, being tired all the time, risky behaviors, not wanting to be with peers, use of illegal substances: drugs, alcohol and getting in trouble with the law. as well as nightmares.

Many mental health disorders and diagnosis for children can overlap with a child’s past trauma ( their perception of safety and fear etc is what is important).

Disorders such as : ADHD, ADD, ODD, Intermittent explosive disorder.

Parents can become aware of the child’s triggers. Parent’s can learn to be more emotionally and physically available. Parents can learn to stay calm and empathize with their child. This is very important in managing behaviors. Allow your child to feel his or her feelings without judgment.

Parents can learn to be consistent and predictable in calm manner without raising ones voice and should avoid any physical punishment.

Children and teens can learn to manage their anger and mood and stress. Children and teens can learn healthier thoughts to manage stress. Your child and teen can learn to communicate in healthy ways. Your child and teen can learn from you as well.

Articles are not to be taken as a substitute for professional advice or counseling.