Thursday, December 13, 2007

A No Yell Zone...

So I used to think I would be one of those people who would never yell at their kids. Even after I had Ezra it seemed like it wouldn't be that hard to keep my cool. It is amazing how quickly things can change. Ezra became a toddler and was far more independent. Grace was born and my sleep and energy levels went way down. Then Ezra learned to argue. It isn't even like he wasn't doing things because he didn't understand, but he now had the ability to willfully rebel and choose to at will. Anyway somewhere along the line I found myself being a yelling mom. I tried to justify myself saying that kids need some discipline and that was all I was doing. I told myself that safety was important and Ezra needed to learn. I didn't feel good about it but I'd come to an uneasy balance with myself. Then last week I noticed Ezra yelling at Grace. She was doing something "naughty" like moving his toys and he would run over to her and yell, "No baby Grace, that is very naughty. You are being a bad, bad girl. Go to time out right now." It made me feel horrible. So I decided it was time to make a change. I have now forbidden myself from yelling at the kids and I'm happy to say the last three days have been completely yell free. Does that mean I will never punish the kids and live in delusion? Heck no. Ezra has already tested the boundaries on several occasions and when he has I sat down and talked with him about it and gave him the choice. He could behave or he could take a time out. I was completely calm and detached about the whole thing though and every time he choose to behave instead of the time out. For three days there have been no fights, no yelling, and not once has Ezra needed to be put in time out. I feel GREAT. Ezra has behaved so well and Grace isn't getting "yelled" at. I told Ezra that if mom was going to be calm and not yell, he couldn't yell at Grace anymore. He was a little sad about it but I think he is adjusting :) Do I think I'll never yell again. No, I'm sure someday I'll probably slip, but the point is I've forbidden it so hopefully I will quickly rectify the situation and apologize to my kids. I wanted my kids to be well behaved but for that to happen I need to be as well and I realize that I was probably a huge instigator into my own child's misbehavior. How sad is that.


Nancy said...

My mom had a friend who decided that and just took it one day at a time...and she never yelled again.

I have tried that with Josie. It is hard...very, very hard.

Abra said...

It's hard to not yell. I'm a yeller. I hate it too. I've tried counting to ten, leaving the situation, even singing (which actually probably aggravates me more, because I don't do that well.)
I used to be worse though, I used to snap and point my finger and Piper at six months old could snap. Nothing more pathetic then strangers complementing her on her surprising dexterity knowing it came from me Snapping and pointing at Deklan (16 mos) and yelling "HEY!"