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Frustration and Easily “Giving Up”

boy-with-open-mouth“My child frustrates very easily…I feel like I’m always walking on eggshells”  When an activity could not be completed or a goal could not be reached, your child’s disappointment is, of course, a very normal reaction.

However, with some children, the disappointment can become disproportionate and the behaviors can become excessive (e.g., sustained temper tantrums, aggression, verbal hostility, etc.).  Here are some suggestions:


  • Encourage your child to come and talk to you about it. You want to be there for him at this time, but he needs to understand that coming to you doesn’t always mean that you can “solve the problem.”  Perhaps you can help him learn from the “failure.”  Sometimes things need to be achieved by children on their own.  As it is said, “Experience is the greatest teacher.”
  • Your child can be helped with the disappointment by verbally discussing why the goal could not be achieved, and what could be done in the future to help him succeed (e.g., If he could not complete a race in a specified time, discuss with him what could be changed the next time, how he could speed up next time to achieve the goal).
  • Help your child to understand that not all goals can be achieved.  Learning to accept and move on to a more realistic goal will help him grow and mature.