I know I’m not the only one in the world that occasionally yells at my kids, but lately I feel like it’s been a LOT more.
Maddi and I struggle most days. She’s soooo strong willed (which I KNOW is a good thing but it’s seriously hard when she’s only 2).
And Connor doesn’t listen AT ALL unless you get mean with him.
I am spread too thin and trying to do 50 things at once. And they are…well, your average kids who like to test limits and push buttons (and in my defense…they are MASTERS!).
I always feel so bad after I yell at them…I figured the guilt stayed with me much longer than the effects of my yelling appear to stay with them.
But in doing some research I discovered some reasons why I need to stop yelling at my kids.
Yelling at Your Kids Can Cause:
It can be terrifying for a child of any age to have an adult towering over them and yelling. Mental abuse is devastating just as any form of abuse is.
Even if you have never hit your child or lashed out physically against them, yelling implies that violence is a possibility. Parents should be their child’s safe place in life, and their child’s most loyal advocate. Never put your child in the position to be fearful of you.
In a post on The National called “What effect does yelling have on your child?“, the writer states that not only is shouting confusing to children but it’s a form of verbal abuse.
Lack of Self-Confidence
When a child is yelled at, they begin to believe that they are not worthy of respect. For a child to learn to love themselves, they must be loved. Part of this love is by being treated by the adults in their life with respect and compassion.
Yelling is the exact opposite of respect and compassion. It devalues a child and erodes their sense of self-worth.
This article from Aha Parenting show 7 reasons how strict parenting can lead to low self esteem (among other issues) for children.
Children who are regularly yelled at when they are young tend to display uncommonly aggressive behavior once they reach a certain age. It only makes sense that a child who is yelled at eventually becomes full of anger, and that the anger will spill out at some point.
If you are yelling at your child, you can be sure that your child is filling up with resentment that will negatively affect him (or her) as well as everyone around him at some point.
This article in the Huffington Post states that “verbal reprimands can have the same impact on children as physical punishment.”
No Yelling Challenge
While I was thinking about this topic, I remembered that friend of mine was really struggling with this issue a year or two ago….so I went looking.
There’s a site called The Orange Rhino and she created a No Yelling Challenge where she set out some rules for herself and tried to see if she could go a whole year without yelling. (She had to start over counting if she yelled.) I really like her yelling meter and am hoping that I can keep this in mind when I’m at my limit with my kids.
I am going to publicly make a promise that I will work to be more present and stop yelling.
Will you make the promise with me?