Reasons Why a Child Might Act Out

There are a number of possible reasons why children act out and few are as simple as "they're a bad kid." When a child acts out, the pattern of inappropriate behavior is often used to cover up deeper feelings of pain, fear, or loneliness.

Responding to that misbehavior in an inappropriate way or assuming the child is simply "bad," can leave the child feeling even more alone with whatever emotions they are coping with.

Simply blaming the behavior on a child being a bad kid, deepens their reasons for acting out instead of reducing them.

Often the reason for acting out is not obvious like being hungry or tired, but instead can be deeply buried. At times, the very act of a tantrum is meant to hide the source of the misbehavior from parents.

Taking a look at each of these possibilities—without dismissing them as not possible in your situation—is important in order to get to the root cause. You may be surprised to learn about the underlying cause of your child's misbehavior or tantrums. 

Here are some possible reasons why your child may be acting out;

Dealing With an Upsetting Situation

Coping With Sensory Issues

Struggling With a Learning Disability

Wanting Attention

Reasons Tweens and Teens Act Out

Struggling With a Mental Health Condition

Attempting to Impress Peers

Engaging in Exploratory Risk-Taking

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) is the term used to describe all types of abuse, neglect, and other potentially traumatic experiences that occur to people under the age of 18.

Adverse Childhood Experiences have been linked to:

We use special techniques, approach and activities to improve developmental assets in youth.


If a child lives with tolerance, He learns to be patient.

If a child lives with encouragement, SHe learns confidence.

If a child lives with praise, He learns to appreciate.

If a child lives with fairness, SHe learns justice.

If a child lives with security, He learns to have faith.

If a child lives with approval, SHe learns to like himself.

If a child lives with acceptance and friendship,

He learns to find love in the world.