Do You Yell at Your Kids? - Youngstown,OH

Updated on December 11, 2011
M.. asks from Anchorage, AK
26 answers

I know this seems like a silly question, but do you yell at your kid(s)? I was raised by a 'yeller' and I hated it. Now that I'm a mom I find myself yelling sometimes. I don't like to yell and I don't do it often, but I feel horrible afterwards. Lately when I do yell (which is not often), my daughter will say "mommy, I love you! Please be happy", then she will give me a kiss and say "there, now will you be happy?". This breaks my heart and makes me feel like I should really try to never yell. But its hard to NEVER yell. Come on, we all yell sometimes, right? How do you completely stop yelling? What do you say to yourself when they are on your last nerve and your knee-jerk reaction is to raise your voice? How, in that split second, do you talk yourself out of yelling? Or is it ok to yell sometimes? I mean, whats wrong with letting our kids know they have upset us? Thanks in advance for any input.

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answers from Cleveland on

Yes. I guess bc I don't do it all the time, I am not worried about it. Maybe it's extremes. People say they were raised by yellers and I think, well, my mom and dad yelled and it didn't stick with me in any way I regret but maybe that's bc they didn't yell all the time. So maybe yelling a lot is a problem but just sometimes isn't a big deal. That's my story and I'm sticking with it :). My sister is a great mom and her view is people aren't going to treat her children with kid gloves their whole lives so it's ok for them to see parents get angry, yell etc and then get over it. Life goes on, people still love each other. Sounds like you're not doing it all the time and that seems ok. Imagine the shock for kids who've never been yelled at the first time it happens by a coach or someone...

5 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

occasionally, yes....but then they know that they've pushed me past my limits.

I'm more apt to get meaner & more intense...which they consider scarier. I have a "mouth & a mind" ....& I use them. :)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Bellingham on

Sometimes with three boys my house becomes very very loud. Sometimes I have to yell to get myself heard above the din. I don't usually scream in anger, and I hate it when my husband does.

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answers from Seattle on

In my house I have 2 rules:

1) When is it okay to yell? When there's danger, or you're far away.

That's when I yell. When I'm on my last ever-lovin' nerve? I send myself on timeout.

Is it perfect? Nope. But in general, I just don't yell. Why? Rule 2.

2) Getting emotionally involved in an argument with a child is like getting emotionally involved in an argument with a piece of furniture. We all do it from time to time, and it's usually regrettable. It also, imho, shows poor grace. Kiddo has no chance. I win. Period. Because what I say goes. So I may as well do it with as much grace as possible.


My mum was a yeller and a spanker. As a kid I made a lot of promises to myself as to how I would treat my kids. Most, I have to respectfully disagree with myself and have nixed. Those 2 I haven't.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

My guess is that all of us yell at our kids at some time or another.

I do sometimes. I don't like it. I feel bad about it later (or even right then).

We do have the right to let our kids know that they've upset us. I try to think of it this way-- I don't want my kid to yell at me, so I try to model that. When I'm feeling plenty impatient, sometimes it's good for me to count to one-hundred (because I know I'm thinking things are taking longer than they actually are-- parent/child time-warp). Sometimes, if I start to yell, I try to take a big step back and see what I am doing, to correct myself if I'm making a mistake in giving directions or discipline. I've learned that taking a break in another room is preferable, even if only to me.

And I do try to save yelling for important stuff. Like running into the street--you will get my loud voice! Or doing something dangerous. That's the best time to make an impression.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Yep. I try not to with all my might.but it happens. We're only human :).

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answers from Honolulu on

I have a loud voice.
My whole family did, growing up.
But it was not yelling.
My kids, know the difference between loud voice or yelling.

But sure, I have yelled.
It is usually, when ALL of my tolerance and patience and fortitude... has gone OUT the door completely. And that takes a lot to get me to the point.

We are all human.
We try to do the best that we can for the best reasons in mind.

There are so many ways, to express frustration and anger. Yes.
We all know that.
I have, since my kids were Toddlers, taught them all about emotions/and expressing it... in the multitude of ways.
So, when *I* lose it.... certainly I apologize, I can say what I feel and they can too, and there is nothing, wrong with that.
I always am honest... with my kids.... and when I make mistakes or errors or when I am upset (with them or myself for other reasons). And they tell me too.
I tell them if I am upset and why. Because... it teaches them... the cycles of life and emotions and situations... and what is done or not or acceptable or not.
So, I am their Guinea Pig too. And I use that fully aware, to teach them about things like this... using *me* as an example, whenever I as a parent... happen to get angry or yell mistakenly for whatever reason.... and how it makes... OTHERS feel, too. And that, we ALL need to try our best. But recognize, when we cannot or did not.
My kids, as a result, are very socially and emotionally aware for their ages.
Because I don't 'hide' those things from them.
But turn it into a teaching, moment. In a positive sense.

I also tell my kids, when I am upset... BUT not because of them... just things that Mommy is irritated about. That feelings like that.. is not always "because" of someone, else. I tell them those things... so that they learn.... and they do... and can discern emotions so well.

Yelling... is not a default manner of expressing, frustration or anger.
It is not the only, way.

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answers from Cleveland on

Yes I yell. I yelled more when I was younger and now only do it as a last resort. My youngest Is sensitive so he realizes he is in real trouble if mom is yelling. My daughter once told me the lady down the street really yells and she can hear her sometimes down the street. I asked her if that is how mom sounds and she said no that lady is loud and she does it all the time. My daughter has accused me of yelling at her when I have not even raised my voice. SO I think each kid( or person or family) may see things differently. We are all human and will never do everything perfectly. I think that you are aware of it is a great start and do the best you can. If it ever borders on abusive(physical or words) then help is needed. When I am bad I put myself in timeout to try to keep my self from going over the edge. We all sometimes have a bad day. I have the habit of hiding when I don't want to be bothered. Discipline is necessary in our lives so we know where the lines are. Discipline does not mean hitting a child but I have spanked before and it is not something I do lightly. I was always taught to discipline when your not angry but sometimes time doesn't work this way.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I don't yell, ever. It simply isn't my nature. My husband doesn't either. Occassionally he will raise his voice a bit, but even then it's more of a change of tone than anything else. Neither of us were raised in homes where parents yelled, so that's probably why we don't yell. When our boys go to friends' houses where the parents yell, it really disturbs them. They come home talking about it. You ask what's wrong with letting our kids know they have upset us, and nothing is wrong with that. I let my kids know when they have done something wrong or if they have upset me in some way; I just do it without yelling. I think it's a more respectful way of communicating. I don't yell at my students in the classroom either.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

it happens...i do it occasionally, i'm sure most of us do. i think it's so sweet that your daughter calls you on it in such a loving must be doing something right :) take advantage of her little wisdom...accept that she's right, tell her, "you're right honey, i'm sorry. i do love you. but i still need you to do X like i asked, okay?" and just start over. what a sweetheart.

there is no perfect mom. the mom that never yells may be passive aggressive or a guilt mongerer. ya know? this is the mom you are. you are imperfect like the rest of us. and you will keep working to be better, like the rest of us. that's what matters. hang in there.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Savannah on

Yes. My mom was a screamer. I do yell sometimes (not a lot, but it happens, and then I feel gross because I hate that). I yelled the other day when my youngest was having a VERY bad day and had been having melt down after meltdown, my son purposely messed up his hair in the parking lot as we were entering the portrait studio, the dog had knocked the child gate down and tore through the trash, I haven't had my very supportive husband home in a week (he's out of the country) and I haven't slept much (can't when he's gone).....I finally just lost it and yelled at the dog, the 2 year old, the 5 year old, the kitchen floor, the door, the missing keys (my 2 year old will steal keys if he can), and myself. All at once. Oops. No Supermom awards for me this week.I REALLY REALLY don't like that. It makes me feel shaky and bad. I am honest and apologized to the boys, and explained that mommy needs sleep and is missing daddy too, and even if things get on my nerves I shouldn't yell and will try not to. Joseph hugged me and said "that's ok mommy, you love me even when I sulk, and I love you even when you yell. Because we're a family, that's why". That made me have a little mini-cry. Even if he's just trying to pull my strings (my dad and husband both think he does that), it works. I've contemplated asking about medication for that, but it's not an all the time problem, just when I'm feeling seriously I think medicine isn't the answer. I don't know what to do except just keep trying to control myself the way I want the boys to control themselves. OH-----time out does help a lot! I sometimes feel frustration building up, like I'm a pot about to boil over, and if I can recognize the feeling in time, I will put a safety gate up to the kitchen, put 2 cups of water within their reach, turn the TV on Nick Jr, and say "Mommy is feeling yuck. I'm going to time out to go reset". I will go lay on the bed or take a shower until the "bubbling" has past.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Colorado Springs on

It takes training, and it's still hard!

But it's not a silly question, I think. It isn't at all.

The fact that you hated being yelled at - and you *remember* hating being yelled at - is good impetus for not wanting to do it yourself. And that's good.

And the fact that probably everyone does it once in a while isn't going to ease your conscience (or mine). Everybody lies, too.

I think this is what *may* be happening. Say your daughter does something she shouldn't - perhaps not doing her household chores she knows she should do at a certain time. What you *want* her to learn is that she needs to do what she needs to do so her life and the family's day can go more smoothly.

As a matter of fact, she needs to learn how to do that whether mama is angry or not.

This is different from her thinking that her job is to keep mama from getting upset. When a child feels that he/she must *keep* mama or daddy happy, that's a terrible burden.

It's not the mistake or the disobedience - the not doing the chores - that's the focus now; it's that she has made the parent (or allowed the parent to) get mad and yell. It's not, "I have to do my chores"; it's "I have to keep mama happy and not make her yell."

You don't want your child afraid of you, or of what you may do.

One thing you can teach yourself is that when your blood pressure goes up, your voice always goes down. Lower the decibel level rather than raising it. You'll have to practice quite a bit before it gets to be a habit. You may even find that refraining from yelling opens doors to other kinds of communication.

You could set a goal for yourself that you want never to yell unless your daughter is in danger or the house is on fire.

But if you have trouble with that, or want to go at this faster, it wouldn't hurt to ask around for the name of a good counselor. Sometimes impartial advice is a very helpful thing.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

I try really hard not to yell, but sometimes it just happens. Usually I just end up raising my voice some and speaking more firmly, and sometimes sounding "fed up" but not really yelling. I mean, we are all only just human and lets face it, kids are frustrating. And sometimes I have found myself "yelling" more because DD is just not paying attention or taking me seriously after I have spoken nicely and made a reasonable request. But then I typically apologize for it later, and tell DD I am very sorry I yelled. I tell her I am not angry, we're just in a hurry and I don't want to be late (or whatever the situation is). It's hard to teach kids about patience when we are sometimes so impatient ourselves and this is something I struggle with myself. But I also agree that kids need to learn that we have limits too. We should not make them responsible for our moods - that's up to us. But they do need to learn where the boundaries lie and when they have crossed a line. And that their parents are humans too and we can sometimes get angry with each other, or yell, but we don't stop loving each other. The opposite of the "yeller" are the parents that sound to me like "wet mops" and I don't want to be like that either.

Sometimes to stop myself from yelling, I think first about how it will make DD feel, and how I will feel for doing it. And sometimes that means I just have to take a big deep breath first. I do get better results by simply speaking firmly, using as few words as possible (rather than lecturing or asking questions like, "What are you doing?"), and if she's still resisting, letting her know what the consequence will be if she chooses not to cooperate. Reading "1-2-3 Magic" by Thomas Phelan really helped too because it gives DD a chance to choose better behavior and it gives me a few seconds to calm down rather than blowing up.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Columbus on

I was not raised by yellers but did find myself starting to yell at my toddler and getting very impatient with him, which I had noticed was starting to turn into a cycle of him acting out more and more.

And then... I discovered the Love & Logic parenting method. Oh my goodness. I LOVE this stuff! It has changed my life and how I react to everything and everyone! I have gobs more patience and I don't know when the last time I yelled at my son was. It's taught me to pause before reacting about anything and I've noticed a huge difference in his behavior. We have so much fun together every day now.

You didn't mention your daughter's age, but they have tons of different books that address each age group. (infant to toddler, child, teen, etc.) as well as books that specifically address certain behaviors.

Here's a link to one of the discussions about angry reactions on their Facebook page:

And here's a link to the free resources they haveon their website:

Good luck! I seriously can't say enough about L&L!!!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Santa Barbara on

I don't yell or scream at my daughter. My parents were screamers and I made a decision long ago to communicate respectfully and methodically. I accomplish much, much more with my serious voice and don't have to talk myself out of it, it is just my personality. I also feel that since I didn't scream at my daughter, showed patience and respect, she gave that to us in return and that has made the teen years really enjoyable.

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answers from Cincinnati on

I was raised by a yeller too and I try so hard not to be that way. The hard part is those of us raised by yellers sometimes don't even sense when our voices start to go louder and louder. In most cases, I catch myself and stop myself from yelling like my mother. Sometimes, a yell sneaks out...and not to make excuses, but it does normally happen the 100th time I've asked calmly to stop doing X or said NO firmly but quietly to Y. I realize that it just makes me look like I am out of control to my child. I apologize and make a mental note to consistently discipline (time out/toy take away etc) long before the 100th NO so I wont reach the frustration where the yell sneaks out. I am not proud when I yell and I do try really hard to not let them out. That is the most I can do. Of a truly dangerous situation, yelling is completely acceptable...and that is another reason I want to curb non dangerous situation yelling. I want the yell to have an impact when it is needed. If we yell all the time, they learn to just completely tune us out.

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answers from Philadelphia on

I try not to yell, but I'm human, so it happens. Don't beat yourself up over it, you do the best that you can. I usually just try to breath and sort of step back and decide how bad the situation really is. Most of the time it's not really as big of a deal as I'm making it, it just coincides with some other stress going on. I try to determine how I would react if I wasn't stressed about other things and then do my best (but clearly I'm not perfect) to react to only that thing and not as if it was the last straw. I think our kids see us as human because we are and if you aren't yelling all the time they know you are doing the best you can, or they will as they get older.

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answers from Houston on

I am learning not to yell, unless it is an extreme circumstance. Both me, my husband and my children are happier. But of course, there is always going to be one of those crazy days where you have had your last straw and you yell, noone is perfect :)

Dr. Sears has some GREAT advice on how to calm this habit down.

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answers from Phoenix on

Yes but I hate myself for it. I 'm really trying to work on it.

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answers from Boca Raton on

Yes, I yell, sometimes... I don't know ONE mom and/or dad that DOESN'T...

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answers from Utica on

I dont think I do it often but I definitely do it and it breaks my heart everytime. I hate when I yell at my daughter but like you said my daughter knows that when I yell I mean business and when she gets upset over the fact that I am yelling I feel even worse
I guess when you think about it its a much better tactic then spanking your kids which I will NOT do - I have tapped my daughters hand when she has done something that she knows better about but thats it
When I yell its almost always because I have calmly and quietly asked her to do something 10 times over and she either isnt listening or chooses to ingnore me
But like I said I always feel awful after I yell and try to calmly think of ways to better go about the situation in the future
I am definitely trying =)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Yes, I am working on not doing it, but I was raised by a yeller, and breaking habits is soooo hard.

My daughter does the same thing to me too! She is always saying "what's with that face, please give me a happy face." It breaks my heart too!

I've been leaving the room and going to my bedroom. I just say 'i'm done," and then leave.

It's fine to let them know you are upset, but you need to not take it out on them. There is a difference between yelling "why did you do that? That was mean!" and saying, 'I don't like it when you hurt your brother. When you hurt him, you hurt me."

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answers from Chicago on

I've occasionally yelled. Sometimes you just snap, ya know? It happens.

One time in particular stands out. My daughters and I were eating dinner and one started in on the other (they are 10 years apart even) and I let it go for a bit and then just snapped and yelled at them to "shut up!!"

My older daughter (18 at the time) about wet her pants because I yelled so loud, and my 8-year-old almost fell off her chair. It's something they laugh about to this day -- 6 years later. So sometimes yelling isn't all bad I guess. lol

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answers from Washington DC on

Yes, but I wouldn't catgegorize myself as a "yeller." I hate when I do it as I do not think it is appropriate, except when your child is about to run into the street, etc. It's one of those things I am working on. Now that you are sensitive to it, you dont' have any excuse for not making it better. I think it is okay to let our kids know we are upset, but yelling doesn't have to be the way to do it. Ask yourself if your behavior woudl be acceptable wiht your spouse, friend, or coworker? If not, it surely isn't acceptable to a child.

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answers from Chicago on

yes, I can be a yeller. I'm sure my kids hate it at times, but if they do their jobs, I wouldn't have to yell.But they are all fine and adjusted...


answers from Phoenix on

Here's a good book "Raising your child, not your voice" by Cuthbertson

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