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Wednesday, April 06, 2011

For the Yellers amongst us...

foremost being myself of course :) here's an article from Circle of Moms about how to get better behaviour from children without yelling.

I have always hoped that the first step in situations like this is recognizing the problem, which was actually the easy part. But after reading quite a few books, and many articles like this, I find they all pretty much point to the same thing - being patient, considering what you are doing before you actually do it, THAT is the most difficult part for someone like me.

Positive reinforcement - how I love the sound of that! But to actually bring it out from within you especially in situations like
S: I want to eat chocolate
Me: Not now baby, it's nearly time to sleep.
S: No I want chocolate now!
Me: No darling. Let's have some tomorrow ok, it's time to get ready to sleep.
S: No I want it right now!!
Me: Come on sweetie, it's not the time for sweets now.
S: Noooo (Volume increased quite a bit by now)
Me: End of Positive Reinforcement by now - No! Go and get ready to sleep NOW!

Of course ending in the usual tears and tantrums :( :( :(

There are situations where I manage to respond like in the articles and books (And I am so surprized when my children behave like the book example too ;) !!), but in actual pressure situations, where compromise is not really a solution (atleast not for me), it is just so difficult to find middle ground. So here's to all of us finding some never-exhausting well of patience within us and being the ideal non-yelling parents we would love to be!

PS: One of the thoughts I have is that my kids already have this present image of me imprinted on them, and if and when that ideal non-yelling mom comes along, they might not recognize her! :)

Post PS: Came across this other article on the same subject again from Circle of Moms (yelling seemed to have been the theme of the week!), which also struck a chord with me - it's about how kids don't "hear" what we say when we yell, and how they start responding similarly to us and others when angry themselves - this really struck a chord with me - I saw firsthand how my daughter would yell at my son, or vice-versa, probably thinking that's ok as amma does the same thing anyway. This was definitely the biggest eye-opener for me to recognize what I was doing.


  1. positive reinforcement..ya sounds so good and simple..damm the patience it takes!!!! I am so short tempered and when R decides to be naughty, it can really be annoying..
    loved the line-
    my kids already have this present image of me imprinted on them, and if and when that ideal non-yelling mom comes along, they might not recognize her! :)

  2. LOL about your kids not recognizing the 'non-yelling' mom!!! I feel exactly the same way :) They're sooo used to me yelling might freak them out if I don't! I too manage to do the right thing (i.e. not yell) SOMETIMES. But u know what, most of the time, the yelling is more for me to let out some steam than to make the kids do what I want them to. Inexpensive therapy for the tortured mommy-soul? :)

  3. Tell me about it....
    I some times feel, If I am a nice, soft-spoken mom, I am not visible or go un-noticed....So I even have the urge to not waste my energy and start yelling the first time...
    But to be honest every night when I see those sleeping beauties, I do promise myself...I should stop being the mean mom and be the "soft/ positive types"!!!!

  4. @Uma - Thank you :). I have always considered myself short-tempered and waited a few years to have kids so I could be prepared, but being prepared is not something you can ever say for parenting I guess!
    @Aparna - Yes definitely need to let out that steam sometimes, how much ever I try I could never turn into the "perfect" parent, so will be satisfied with about 75% i think ;).
    @Sudha - I can not imagine you yelling at your kids the way I do :). Good to know I'm not alone out there. If only kids were always as angelic as they look like when they sleep ;).
    @All - added a last paragraph as I saw another article which made so much sense to me - do have a read :).