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Hello there, I live in a boarding school in England. At the beginning of this year new guy from Germany has joined our house.This German guy hasn't had a great year so far and this is because the way he behaves. He is 17 years old but most of the time behaves like 9 years old ( similar behaviours as my 9 year old sister). He always gets angry very easy and very often. He can turn crazy in few seconds, but its mainly because of the others, who as you'd say bully him. What's wrong with him or does he just feel pressured or something? And how could you make him feel less pressured? Sorry if this is wrong category Thanks for your help!
Hello, thank you for your post. I can assist you. Welcome!
The new guy is lucky to have you as an advocate for him, caring enough to figure out a way to help him.
As a new guy he is first of all anxious, afraid, and insecure, and it comes out in outbursts of anger.
You may consider validating his emotions, he may feel pressured, not accepted, and not heard.
Did I understand you correctly that it has been the beginning of the year that he joined you? If so, you'd think by now he would have adjusted to the house and others.
It sounds like he is volatile, easily triggered into outbursts of anger.
Again, he may be feeling insecure, and his thinking may lean more towards the negative, thinking others are "bullying" him.
There can be many explanations for someone acting angrily- the few I mentioned, role models in his family who solved conflict through yelling. He may have been yelled at in his home, and that's what he has learned. I'm more inclined to believe he is anxious and insecure. That's where the listening and validating may help him begin to relax a bit.
Approaching him with "I'd like to help, what can I do to help and support you?"
You may have hit it right on- he's an immature 17 year old, and may be stuck in that age emotionally. Similar to a 9 year old, has trouble regulating his emotions.
Are there resources for him to get support, would he be open to talking to someone?
If he were willing to speak to say a counselor, they can assist him in learning to better regulate his emotions, help him to think less negatively, and more realistically. Many of us naturally learned skills to calm, sooth our self. Some have not learned those things.
When you say he turns "crazy" in a few seconds, he could be dealing with a mood disorder. It's difficult to diagnose this unless he were to see a doctor, counselor, or other helping professional.
Sometimes when a person has anger control problems, it takes "hitting a bottom" in order to realize there is a problem. In order for any change to happen, we have to first identify there is a problem. If he is not "seeing it" nor taking responsibility for his part in the conflict, it may have to get worse before it gets better. If for example, he were to get into trouble because of his anger, or the roommates asked him to leave etc.
Those on the outside looking in see the problem more clearly, but in his mind he may see it as other people "causing" him to feel angry- when no one can "make us" feel anything. It's the perceptions in our head that determine our emotions. If he is insecure that others are "out to get him", or do not like him, in response he may act defensively and or angry.
The best you can do is offer him support, a sounding board, someone who will listen to what is really going on. If he's willing to talk, allow that, and actively listening. You could mirror or reflect on what you "hear" him saying. "I hear you saying....that's really hard, how can I help"- that can feel very validating to a person, and they may calm down, relax a bit.
Please let me know if you have other comments or questions. I will be notified if you post again and I will respond back asap. Thanks again for your question.