Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Why Mommy needs to stop yelling

I know you've been there.
I've been there. 
Hearing your own voice grow louder and louder with the frustration about to bubble over.
And you suddenly find yourself yelling at your that little person. 

We all strive to be good mothers. 
We warm milk, we wipe noses, we empty shoes of sand that irritates tiny feet, we bathe and scrub, we play, we cook, we clean and we LOVE. 

Yelling doesn't mean you are a failure, but it does need to be address for the sin that it is so that we can have a game plan of how to deal with it. 

Why Mommy Yells:
I think one of the biggest steps in having a plan to stop yelling (or shouting, raising your voice, screaming, whatever it is YOU do -- and you know what I am talking about mama), is to figure out what sets you off and unleashes your cray cray side lol. This was vital for ME in realizing the times when I was getting the most upset was due to outside circumstances - not only my child's behavior. For example, YES it is always frustrating and aggravating when my 2 year old decides to scream "NO" and launch her cereal across the room. However, it is 1000 x more stressful when we are late, or I have company coming over, or I am tired, or the house is a mess. Instead of merely responding to the behavior (the disobedience of saying no and throwing food) I am now fuming inside with the fact that I have more work to do now in cleaning up, getting more food, and dealing with the issue. So figure out what your triggers per say, are. It is hard to stay calm when a toddler is kicking, hitting and screaming but you must -- because you are the adult not the 2 year old. 

Why Mommy Needs to Stop:
We all know why we shouldn't yell or why it's bad blah blah blah, but if you really don't think it's that bad you will continue to do it. 
You can be anti-spank, anti-shame punishment, anti-whatever -- but if you are yelling and screaming at your kids you are doing just as much if not more damage. You can read countless studies online about what happens in kids brains when you scream at them but the point I am stressing is that when you yell -- you are demonstrating and out of control mama. And the truth is screaming scares kids. It makes them wonder if and when you will lose it again. And an out of control mommy screaming at her child is not only scary, it's missing the point and not allowing you to calmly deal with the ISSUE of your child's disobedience. Then you feel guilty about how you have now responded so you try and justify it by the outrageous behavior of your child.......and the viscous cycle continues. 

Game Plan:
I talked about triggers so discover what things in particular set you off, but if you are a yeller and that has been your M.O. for a while you are going to have to do some major revamping when it comes to dealing with difficult situations. 

  1. Take a DEEP breath. I know this is obvious but this works. You feel that anger rising about to bubble out and just STOP. Take a few deep breaths, I promise your reaction will be different. 
  2. Take a mommy time out. Seriously. If you need to walk away (given you can from the situation) and take a few minutes to calm down. yes the discipline will not be immediate as it should be but it will be from a calm and gathered mommy instead of an explosively reactive one.
  3. Be there for and with your kids. Your toddler is less likely to hurl their shoes at the wall or dump their plate if you are right there with them. This obviously can't be all the time. But if you are sensing a difficult day ahead maybe leave a few things off you list and be attentive to your child's moods so you can correctly handle them when they get out of hand. 
  4. Confess and repent. Don't allow yourself to justify your shouting because of your lack of sleep, busy day, or tantrum throwing child. Ask God for forgiveness and his strength to deal with your child in a loving way. Next, confess to your child. I have already done this multiple times and my daughter is only 2 -- yikes! Tell them you are sorry for raising your voice, that their actions were wrong but that your response was too. Ask for forgiveness. This is so vital is showing your kids that even mommy is subject to God. She makes mistakes and has to daily ask for help and forgiveness. I encourage you to begin practicing this even if your child is too young to understand. You will be creating a habit for the future when you mess up and they do understand. 
  5. Get on their level and see things from their perspective. Were you running around getting ready to leave while texting and ignoring something? Sure we can't all just throw our breakfast on the ground to get attention, but when you can try to come at it from their view you will have a better response in why that is not an appropriate way to get mommy's attention. 
  6. Don't be mad at them for being children. This is huge. Your child or toddler is just that -- a child. You were a child too and had to learn the correct ways to act and behave. Someone took the time to teach us as well :) I can't be mad at my 2 year old for needing discipline, that is what she is supposed to need. I am the adult who has already received the training in what is right and wrong, and it is my job to teach her. I cannot be upset for that. I can be disappointed when she blatantly disobeys me, but it has to do with her heart not her actions. These are the years of guiding and training and guiding and training. If they needed to training I would be worried! 

Whether you grew up being yelled at and that is your motivation to not yell at your kiddos, or are like me and have not ONE single memory of your mom yelling (super mom much?) -- it doesn't matter. Yelling is damaging, and above all else it is sin against God and against your child. Refuse to yell. Ask God for the strength when you feel yourself about to lose it. Pray for patience when you are picking up those scattered cheerios. Take a break if the stress is overwhelming you and causing you to act out more. Spend your few spare minutes during the day prepping dinner or straightening up instead of scrolling instagram that way when kids are crying at 6:30 but you are just starting dinner you won't lose it and lash out. You can control your tongue, and with God's help your heart can change towards your little ones as well.

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