When young children are angry, they scream or throw a tantrum. As they become older, they say hurtful things like "I hate you" when they are upset. Do children try to play psychological games on their parents? Yes, of course.
Respect your child's needs to express angry feelings. Don't take your child's exaggerated comments personally. For example, if your child says something hurtful when she is given a time-out, you can reply, "Well, I love you anyway, but you still need to take a time-out." Don't allow her comment to change the rule on time-outs.
At a later time, discuss anger with your child. Explain how people who live together normally have both positive and negative feelings about each other. You can add, "Sometimes I get angry with you, but I always care about you."
If your youngster threatens to run away, say calmly: "That would make me very sad." Most children then drop the subject. However, an adolescent who threatens to run away needs to be taken more seriously. Often family counseling is needed.