As a child I never liked being yelled at. It’s another story that my parent’s rarely yelled at me or my siblings. My mom would only and only yell at her kids, when she was really frustrated. Dad always had a way with him just making eyes at us and everything was accomplished easily.
I cannot deny that I have never yelled at my boy. It is something I resort too when I know my positive disciplining methods are not working and are being tested beyond limits :-p However, once my yelling session is over, which is not longer than five minutes, I go back to talking. I make sure I talk my child and explain the reason why I yelled. We also sometimes discuss alternatives that we could use instead of yelling.
I had recently read somewhere that yelling is the new way of spanking. Ouch! That doesn’t sound good to my ears. I would never in my wildest, angriest dreams would want to spank my child. So before yelling at kids tends to become the new parental pandemic, let us understand few things.
Reasons why parents yell
Are you having enough me-time?
Yes, as parents having some me time, seems almost next to impossible but we still need it. I would want to spend every waking minute with my son when he was younger. Soon I realized that I also need to get adequate sleep and rest. I needed to be happy myself to be able to raise a happy child.
I have always co-slept with my son and I still do. In the earlier days his slightest movement would break my sleep. I then decided to switch the baby into a cot that was right next to my bed. This helped me sleep better and I had my little one right next to me. I understand, this may not be possible with everyone hence you need to seek help from other family members.
If you feel guilty about having self-care moments, don’t! We need to be able to set some personal boundaries for ourselves and for our kids to learn too. You will have kids objecting to it. I just had a moment where my son didn’t want me to work and wanted me to sleep beside him. I calmly explained to him that I would lay down beside him as soon as my work is over.
Do you feel responsible about how your kids behave?
We are the caregivers and caretakers for our kids. It is very natural for us to feel responsible over something that goes wrong. Having said that, it is not always possible for you to control how your children behave. There are times when our kids are upset over something or they are unable to express themselves. It is not uncommon for them to have a melt-down. You losing your mind or yelling at kids make matters worse. It is always advisable to not mix your personal emotions with your child’s emotions, if you want to control yelling.
Your expectations from yourself and your kids may be unreal sometimes.
How I wish to be a super hero or have a magical wand. It indeed seems very gratifying to have great expectations from our own selves and fulfill them. Conversely, it is not always possible. We need to understand that at the end of the day, our kids will remain kids. Expecting our kids to behave in a certain manner may add pressure on them and you too.This may definitely result in us yelling at the kids for the smallest reasons.
Have you set too many limits or are you confused about some of them?
As parents, we often want our children to work as robots. “Our wish should be their command”, sort of thing. We need to understand and accept the fact that just like us, our kids have moods too. So the next time, if you child denies doing something you asked them or says a few impolite words, don’t explode and start yelling. You can later on, talk to them about a certain behavior that they displayed and how you would it could have been better.
Are you too authoritative or want to display power by yelling?
Parenting is not a power battle. It’s neither a game of thrones. The point I’m trying to make is that, we don’t have to win a battle of superiority against our kids. We definitely don’t want them despising us, so instead of showing power, politely ask for favors. Use your thank you and please well.
How to improvise and reduce the yelling?
Once you have identified reasons on why are you yelling at the kids so often or what are your trigger points, it will be easier to take charge. I realized that I would yell when I would feel disoriented about my day. I decided to talk about it to my little one. We did not get into details but I told him, how mommy is having a hard day. We spoke about how we could handle it. This not only reduced the repetition of yelling, my boy too came to me when he was having a tough day.
Try calming techniques
We all know meditation works wonders. It definitely helps me. I also try to count backwards before I let the storm take over. You can either step out of the house for a few minutes or leave the room. I seldom let me son know that I am doing this to avoid yelling at him. Kids are like sponges, they absorb everything. While I am trying to calm myself down, I am even imparting a few lessons on self-control (I am literally patting my back now)
Your focus is your child after all.
We all want to be the version of parent that we read in different books. Believe me, it’s not impossible. A few tweaks here and there, can help you tackle big hurdles. I am discussing these details with you because our kids are, our focus after all. We want to raise happy, confident kids. Thus one must try and stay calm and happy too.
Apologize when you have yelled at your kids.
Sorry can almost fix everything when you mean it. You apologizing to your kids is a great way to tell them about goofing up. I too apologize to my son and he understands that adults can go wrong too. Saying sorry, doesn’t make you lose your designation or power.
You definitely cannot stop yelling at your kids instantly. There will be times when you will lose self-control. Avoid adding challenges and stressors to parenting, we are all trying our best and let us just continue doing so, Practice will eventually help you reduce the number of times you have to yell. Try using an assertive tone when you are inclined to yell. When the kids are crossing their limits, you can tell them that soon you may have to raise your voice. Parenting is never taught, you learn through your own experiences with a little help from here and there. So, happy parenting.