If your kids are acting out, they might just be sad

(CNN)The pandemic brought a major upheaval to the lives of Amber Sparks and her 5-year-old daughter, and her daughter is exhibiting unruly behavior because of it.

Sparks, a Washington, DC-based writer and author of the short story collection "And I Do Not Forgive You," recently witnessed her daughter having a meltdown over "something incredibly trivial, like a crayon breaking or something like that."
"She started screaming and throwing things around, including her whole body, and it lasted for half an hour, I think. She never has tantrums like that, until now," Sparks said.
    "She just kind of wore herself out. At the end she was just crying quietly on her bed, and I was hugging her, and she said very quietly, 'I miss school and I miss my friends.' It was so sad."
    Sparks and her daughter live in a small apartment in the city, where they used to walk to parks, museums, restaurants, libraries and bookstores. Now they mostly stay home alone, Sparks said. And her daughter never hit her mother or anyone else until this crisis.