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Feeling angry isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But sometimes young people use anger to cover other feelings of distress, and can let it out in ways that can cause harm to themselves and others.
Anger is a normal emotion - it affects everyone at times. Often anger covers up other emotions such as stress, embarrassment, fear, hurt, or helplessness. We usually feel angry when things don’t go the way we expect or want them to.
Feeling angry is not a bad thing - it’s how we express anger that matters. Sometimes people bottle up their anger and don’t let it out. This can make them feel sad and can really hurt them if they don’t deal with it. Other times anger can overwhelm a person - they get so caught up in emotion that they do or say things they later regret.
It is never okay for someone to be violent or hurt someone else just because they are angry. There are other ways to express anger that don't hurt anybody.
If young people haven't learned how to control their anger, it might become harmful or dangerous.
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Often anger is the result of many other feelings, such as hurt, frustration, disappointment or fear. Helping someone start to talk about their anger will help them understand it, and deal with it better.
If someone’s anger is starting to hurt you, you don’t have to put up with it. Try to talk with them about it and support them to find a way to deal with it.
Confidential Helpline: 0800 376 633
Youthline provides free phone, text, and email counselling support. Its website has great information for youth dealing with challenging situations including how to deal with anger.
NZ Violence Prevention is committed to preventing violence in New Zealand's future and assisting others to stop violence in the present. It engages in community education and training that will help the public reduce conflict and live more peacefully.
Developed under the Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project, this online resource aims to help anyone who a young person confides in about supporting their wellbeing, including support for mild to moderate mental health issues such as stress, anxiety and mild depression.
The Guidelines are designed to support people ‘walking alongside’ a young person to help them access mental health advice and support.