A friend posted a very powerful image on Facebook, Steve Witzberger, today that really struck home for me. This image is about child abuse but if you look closer it is about more than the physical... it is about the unseen wounds that anger and rage can cause.
Though this image is about children, and we should protect our children at all costs, it of more than that it is about people in general. It speaks of the unseen wounds that are created through physical violence which are carried with us through out this life time. When we strike out in anger there can be serious physical pain. The physical injuries heal with time... the pain they cause fades from memory. What does not heal so easy is the emotional damage that such outrages can cause.
When a child is struck in anger many times they see the person who is suppose to love and protect them causing fear and harm. This action, which to adults seems minor, can and does have life long ramifications. If repeated, over time children begin to develop trust issues with those close to them. Trust issues carry on into adulthood if not resolved.
So please... before you strike out in anger or rage at a child, or another adult, take a moment... walk away from the situation for five minutes. Take deep slow breaths to allow yourself to calm and relax. It is less costly to do this than to strike out for that one brief second. You will thank yourself later... as will the actions of your child when they see you walk away when angry. It is a habit which they too will develop instead of striking out themselves.