Subconscious Boundary Testing?

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    • #9988

      Hi all
      This may seem like an odd question but do kids perhaps subconsciously test boundaries sometimes so that we set a limit or limits that then allows them to release their emotions?
      Natalie
      x

    • #9989
      Meg Rodney
      Keymaster

      Yes! I do believe that happens from time to time. So, if you notice a kiddo seems to be pushing up against every little boundary, you will know that an offloading of big feelings is on the horizon. When you notice that pushing up against boundaries, you can try to get in some physical play (especially power reversal) to facilitate some big belly laughs that can help offload tension.

    • #9999

      Ah, ok – thanks for the tip! I hope to be more ‘aware’ of it before it hits next time… ie. spot it earlier 🙂

    • #10025

      Natalie great question!

      Yes to everything Meg said, and also in case you haven’t found it before there’s a link to a PDF with a list of power reversal games in my Power of Play article https://www.peacefulparent.com/the_power_of_play/

      Not an odd question at all and yes you’re absolutely spot on, this is a very common and normal process. When a child has pent up feelings that are hard for them to identify or express, it can come out in that pushing back and defiant behaviours and it’s often then in that moment where the parent stops trying to fix things or reason but instead holds a clear limit while maintaining the connection that the child can let it all pour out! They may be crying or raging about not being allowed to go on TV for instance (something that allows them to dissociate and numb out from their uncomfortable emotions) but what’s actually coming out is all that pent up energy from something or a series of other events that caused build ups of stress and frustration. Sometimes it’s about process trauma even going back to the birth. But whether it’s the daily stresses building up or something that was upsetting, this is quite classic.

    • #10026

      Natalie I think this article “Setting limits can bring healing tears” explains this process fairly well hopefully; https://www.peacefulparent.com/setting-limits-can-bring-healing-tears-tantrums/ The child subconsciously uses the boundary/ limit to push against to push those frustrations to the surface and get them out and off their chest.

    • #10032

      Thank you!!

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