Wednesday, November 4, 2009

My name is Brenda and I am a Yellaholic

Christine over at Welcome to My Brain wrote an excellent post on yelling a few days ago. The woman is brilliant!

I have given up yelling but have to work constantly to keep from falling back on to it. Just when I think I have it over come I hear it spewing from my mouth and gasp. Engage brain. Shut mouth.

First of all it is a trigger for many kids. Children who have been abused and neglected may have many traumatic memories surrounding yelling. A certain look on our faces, an angry gleam in our eyes along with the loud voices can all take them back to some pretty bad moments. So if any of those things happen they are no longer with us in the kitchen but back at some bad place in time. They may not even be aware it happens. The wiring in the brain has been so changed that the "fight, flight and freeze" part is working way more than is healthy.

Does this mean we give in to little Johnny's every whim and put on our June Cleaver face at all times? Of course not. We set boundaries. We can be firm but speak gently.

Our son, Fish, has refused to turn down the radio in his car. It is so loud that it hurts my ears. Of course, he does not do this if we are in the car. He had a low tire that I went to have repaired yesterday. I turned on his radio and was thrown to the back of the car by the sound. Well, not really. But it was loud. I've told him he cannot hear if something is wrong with his car. He cannot hear sirens. I had my car guy help me out. He took out the fuse that runs the radio and I have it tucked away.

Fish was angry and started to yell. I hung up. When he can calmly and respectfully come and discuss with me why it was taken we will talk about how long it will be. I do not talk with children who are yelling but walk away. If they say "Why aren't you talking to me about it?" I say "When you can talk with me calmly and respectfully we will have a conversation." Fish does not have RAD but I use the same principal with all of our kids.

Teaching our kids to talk things out instead of yelling will help them throughout their lives in many relationships. It is worth the trouble. I'm Brenda and I am an Yellaholic.


C said...

"Hi, Brenda."

Sorry, had to say it.

Ya' know, cause I'd be right there at that support group with ya'.

I once had to put post-it's all over my house with the initials "DNY" (DO NOT YELL!). Had one on my steering wheel. Tucked one in my wallet.

It was kinda' like the "patch" for yelling.

Brenda said...

"Hi Christine" Maybe I should put one over my mouth! : )Oh and"Thanks Christine"

Anonymous said...

If it's his car then I don't think you should have removed the fuse.

peggysue said...

:) Great idea, a directly related consequence to a safety issue. And I don't have a June Cleaver face ever, I don't think.

Brenda said...


I respect your feelings but did it for several reasons.
1) I purchased the car.
2) I pay the insurance
3) I love him very much and do not want him injured if something is going on that he needs to hear.

Jules said...

Did you at least warn him that you were going to take it?

ali said...

i was a yeller, my mom was a yeller. her mom was a yeller.. you get the idea. i yelled at my oldest kids, but stopped after my middle child (RAD)entered the picture. i cant tell you different my 2 youngest are. when i do finally screw up and yell- they are shocked! they are calmer than my oldest and they hardly yell-because they are not being yelled at (MUCH LOL) i mess up, by i try ahrd. every. day. i do still yell at the dog sometimes. cant help it.

ali said...

ps-hey, anonomous- THAN is spelled with an A, not an E. are you like.. 10?

Brenda said...

Woah! I am behind.

Jules~He was given several warnings that his radio would be disconnected. I have not turned it back on yet because he still insists it was not to loud.

Ali~ We all just do the best we can. You are an awesome mom

Angie said...

Oh man, this is a tough one for me too. I just realized a few weeks ago that the "look" that my RADling gives me is in direct response to the way I look at him.....ouch.