Our expert says:
Try the parenting forum as well. Some children do at times respond this way, turning their feelings of anger and aggression against themselves. I'm not clear from your message whether he has always behaved this way, or if this is a recent development. If it continues, or if it escalates into further episodes of significant self-harm, it would be waise to take him to see a child psychiatrist or psychologist for assessment and more specific advice. Meanwhile, you could try offering him a target for anger --- perhaps a pillow or a soft toy, he can hit and smack when he feels so angry, rather than himself, and see if he can swap the target of his aggression
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