Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Redirected Aggression We recently introduced another cat into our household. My wife and I got married last year and her cat moved in with mine. The cats do not get along as well as my wife and I do. Right now they are living behind separate doors, speaking to each other through hissing and snarling. My cat whom I have had for over 8 years has not only attacked the other cat, she has also attacked both my wife and myself.
Through research, we have found that an animal will attack anything in its sight - animal or human when it is agitated. The animal brain does not discern the cause of the irritation, it simply attacks. The term for this behavior is called; "redirected aggression." We have to recognize the agitated state of the cat and react accordingly. We are still seeking expert help in dealing with this interruption of the peace in our home. The cat is unaware of its behavior and punishment would only serve to exacerbate the bad behavior.
After mentoring thousands of children, I have been the target of "redirected aggression" in countless situations. Young men who have grown up without a father hold a grudge against males in positions of authority. Young women who have been abused by men grow up with a mistrust and sometimes a vehemence bordering on hatred towards men. As a mentor, my passion is to help them value themselves and other human beings. Healing must take place or otherwise the "wounded will wound others." Hurting people hurt people. Life experience has caused their view of adults to become tainted. The lack of love in their lives may have rendered their immature minds incapable of dealing with the pain that has caused their redirected aggression.
There are many labels we place on people to explain their behavior. The greatest label is the one that we ourselves as mentors wear and it's called compassion. Protecting ourselves from attacks and removing the cause of the attack is natural. It's hard to "turn the other cheek." Understanding that a young mind is not yet fully formed will help you withstand onslaughts of redirected aggression. Stay safe, be prepared and show compassion. Use wisdom when dealing with a misbehaving child. The misbehavior may be a cry for help.
Thanks for your time.
Go do something nice for somebody.
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