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Old 10-12-2012, 03:15 PM   #11
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

I'd like to meet a parent who hasn't 'snapped' in one way or another. I find that when I take care of myself and make sure my needs are met, I'm a much better Mom. It also helps if I can count to 10 - literally, in my head - after asking my 3 year old to do something. Gives me a chance to calm myself down before reacting or asking him to do something 14 times in 5 seconds!

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Old 10-12-2012, 03:23 PM   #12
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

I used to yell a lot, and it makes me sad to remember it. I think I was just at wit's end with so many other things, I couldn't keep it together to find a better way.

Some things I've learned to deal with it are:
- Telling DD "This is the last time I'm going to ask you nicely." That usually works really well
- Come up with create punishments that don't involve you talking. i.e. they have to reorganize that pantry by exp. date, clean the bathroom, when laundry is piled up they have to do that, etc. If they refuse, more chores just get added on. DD knows I will assign weeks of chores if she tries me.
- Use time outs and actual discipline more. If your boss at work told you not to do something, but nothing ever happened, you'd learn pretty quick too that you don't actually have to do it.
- Be consistent. Kids need to know what to expect
- If you are yelling b/c you are frustrated with something else, tell your kids that. That helps me diffuse the situation and place the blame where it belongs
- Wash your face and hands when you are really mad. The water is soothing. Muslims wash before we pray, so I'll pray afterwards and that helps me take a step back from it all.

HTH!
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Old 10-12-2012, 03:57 PM   #13
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

I am a yeller, without a doubt. I figured out recently all it does is make me more upset, and the kids yell at each other! I struggle so much with it still though. When I'm having a calm day where I don't lose my cool, DS1 (4) has been saying "Thank you for saying nice words to me mommy!" (I don't curse at them or name call, but he associates the tone with nice or not nice words). Talk about breaking my heart and making me feel like garbage! So I'm trying even harder. I really don't have any tips, other than just stepping away from it for a minute or 2 before you speak. I also watch some additional kids and that's making it worse rather than better, so I am trying to phase out that income so I can stop. It's not fair to anyone.

I parent the way I was raised, so it's hard to break a bad habit, for sure. Maybe a bean jar of sorts for MOMMY, just like you would do for a child's behavior. When it's full, you get an entire day to do whatever you please (maybe just a manicure, or just walking around the mall with NO kids, or maybe a shopping spree...whatever suits your needs and financial situation). I think I'm going to try that myself. Every day I don't yell, I get a bean/button/whatever, and if I do, I have to take one out.
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:02 PM   #14
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

Thank you for this thread. I needed this. I have been yelling more and more lately and losing my temper. I dont want to at all. But lately DD has been pushing me. I have to say EVERYTHING 2-3 times just to get her to acknowledge me. It's extremely frustrating, and when DS (20 months) is climbing on things and destroying the house, and DD isn't listening, I snap.
Dh is like most of the hubbys here. He's calm and talks to the kids calmly but firmly. When he does yell, he means business.
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:04 PM   #15
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishie Kisses View Post

I parent the way I was raised, so it's hard to break a bad habit, for sure. Maybe a bean jar of sorts for MOMMY, just like you would do for a child's behavior. When it's full, you get an entire day to do whatever you please (maybe just a manicure, or just walking around the mall with NO kids, or maybe a shopping spree...whatever suits your needs and financial situation). I think I'm going to try that myself. Every day I don't yell, I get a bean/button/whatever, and if I do, I have to take one out.
Love love love this idea! We have a reward chart for DD. Maybe I'll make one for me so she can see that I'm working on not yelling at her
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:25 PM   #16
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We've been talking about this on another board i'm on. It's a tough habit to break, for sure. I can't take credit for these ideas, but here is the advice:

1. Train yourself to lower your voice when you feel like yelling, even to a whisper. Have a "reset" day and have everyone whisper. Remind and enforce. Teach them to come to you when called in conversational tone instead if hollering for them. If you are needed, go to them and deal with the problem instead of making them come to you. Sometimes we yell just to be heard over all the din, this helps lower the overall noise level.

Michelle Duggar was a yeller, believe it or not. She was able to overcome it by whispering when angry and wanting to yell. Now, her kids fear the whisper.

2. Imagine each time you yell, you are slashing them with a knife. Wounds from yelling may not be outward, but our words and tone can cut as deep. If we were cut every time we yelled, we break that habit REAL fast.

3. Imagine if your DH yelled at you every time you made a mistake or made a mess? We'd feel awful. I've heard of making a pic of DH into a button and pinning them on the kids shirts, to remind us that we would never talk to him in that way and it's not ok to talk to our children that way.

I believe it is one if the hardest habits in parenting to break. So hard. But it can be done.
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Old 10-13-2012, 07:12 AM   #17
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishie Kisses View Post
I am a yeller, without a doubt. I figured out recently all it does is make me more upset, and the kids yell at each other! I struggle so much with it still though. When I'm having a calm day where I don't lose my cool, DS1 (4) has been saying "Thank you for saying nice words to me mommy!" (I don't curse at them or name call, but he associates the tone with nice or not nice words). Talk about breaking my heart and making me feel like garbage! So I'm trying even harder. I really don't have any tips, other than just stepping away from it for a minute or 2 before you speak. I also watch some additional kids and that's making it worse rather than better, so I am trying to phase out that income so I can stop. It's not fair to anyone.

I parent the way I was raised, so it's hard to break a bad habit, for sure. Maybe a bean jar of sorts for MOMMY, just like you would do for a child's behavior. When it's full, you get an entire day to do whatever you please (maybe just a manicure, or just walking around the mall with NO kids, or maybe a shopping spree...whatever suits your needs and financial situation). I think I'm going to try that myself. Every day I don't yell, I get a bean/button/whatever, and if I do, I have to take one out.
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Originally Posted by Kiliki View Post
I don't think it's an instinct, I think it's just kinda something we (moms who yell sometimes) picked up somewhere in life as a "coping mechanism" of sorts that becomes habit after a while. When I yell at my kids, I am SO IRRITATED with them that I just cannot collect myself enough to find a different way to communicate at the moment. The yelling tells them I mean business (when I'm not doing it too often) and it helps me relieve some stress. Not ideal, but I think this is why I personally do it.

I agree w/the poster who said to take 3 deep breaths and THEN respond. But that is easier said than done until you start making yourself do it.

Sometimes I'll close my eyes and leave the room and come back b/c I need to chill out before I respond to a bad situation .... like once my son dumped cat food all over the laundry room (he was sent in to put his dirty clothes in there and was taking too long) .... it was just the last thing I could take at the moment. I opened the door, he quickly stood up, said he was trying to feed the cat (he knew what he was doing was wrong - the cat has a food bowl). I was so upset, I closed the door and walked away and waited until I calmed down before I went back in and made him clean it up. Another thing I've done when I just want to scream, is pick them up, carry them to their bedroom, put them on their bed, say softly but sternly, "do NOT come out until I tell you." And then I leave the room and go tend to whatever mess was made or whatever was going on. Put myself back together and THEN address the situation.

I think it's a really hard habit to break, but you kinda just gotta do it. Like any other habit, it takes time to get over it, and you'll have good days and bad days.

Oh, and my DH is no saint when it comes to yelling at the kids. He DOES yell (but not name call or curse at them), but when he raises his voice, the kids know he is serious. He's calm almost all the time, but occasionally the kids do something that sends him reeling. ... Last time I heard him yell at a kid, we were in the car and my 5 yr old started hitting my 18 mo old in the head with her fist (in an "aw you're so cute" kind of way - but started laughing and continued when the baby was crying) and my DH was so upset and angry that she could have hurt the baby, he yelled at her, and then had to go for a walk. So he saves his crazy moments for seriously bad behavior.



I never thought you did.

I kind of think all parents yell at some point. There's no such thing as a perfect parent, we all just do our best!

Oh, and as far as taking "too many" breaks - I don't compare myself to anyone else or their family - and when you are a stay-at-home-mom, you can get burnt out by the pure monotony of the day, from having to police kids, and discipline them, and never get to go pee alone.

Some women have it all together all the time, and that's great for them (although I seriously doubt what I see in those situations), but I am not that way. I NEED "me" time. Even if it's just an hour grocery shopping, or a 30 min trip to Starbucks to grab a coffee and sit and sip for a bit. I can't be everything all the time, and I'm ok with that. My DH is too. He hardly ever makes me feel bad for needing to take some time away, and he encourages it. 9 times out of 10, I come home refreshed and chipper, ready to tackle any problems, happy to clean up, ready to make dinner, etc.

It's all about balance. You have to be balanced in your choices. Don't feel guilty for needing a break. You should be proud of yourself for knowing when you do!
Thank you I'll be reading this post over and over again. You hit the nail on the head for me. I definitely feel awful about yelling and super guilty about doing it and then needing breaks. It's so hard not to compare yourself to others who are either doing it more successfully and/or appear to be doing it more successfully. I genuinely believe there are people out there who have a more mild and gentle temperament, and I desperately wish I were one of them all the time. Hubby says I need to just to focus on what I have to work with, but I struggle with wishing I weren't hot-tempered to begin with. I know I can change, and I have tremendously, but until I conquer this demon in my life, I despise what I do to my kids and am heartbroken that they have to be involved in such a direct way.

Thank you for giving me permission to be ok with where I'm at in life. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I will try to be proud that I know when I need a break.
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Old 10-13-2012, 07:41 AM   #18
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

I LOVE all the ideas and feedback. I will be reading this thread a lot when I'm struggling. Thank you everyone! I especially like the ones below!

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Originally Posted by tallanvor View Post
The main thing that has helped me is prayer. When I spent time in prayer each morning and ask God to give me patience and to help me not yell, things go a lot better. I can't seem to do it on my own. I spent years trying. It's still not always easy, but it is the thing that has helped the most.
Agreed! I am screaming the most when I'm praying the least. Of course then I feel bad for not spending time with God and then screaming at my kids. They go hand in hand. I have to get ahead of the problem and be proactive in both regards. It just stinks when I fall behind in both areas!

Quote:
Originally Posted by corinne76 View Post
Love love love this idea! We have a reward chart for DD. Maybe I'll make one for me so she can see that I'm working on not yelling at her
Me too. I may just pull out a "bean jar" when I'm in a downward spiral. It's an awesome idea to show the kids (and yourself) that you need help to behave too and that you are making progress.
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Old 10-13-2012, 07:42 AM   #19
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Re: Anyone conquer their knee-jerk reaction to yell?

LOVE! Thanks for sharing!!
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