Yelling Can Cancel Listening

This articles shares a big mystery, why a child stops listening when a parent is yelling at them.

We all know that modeling is a big part of parenting. Parents realize that yelling at their children and then telling them not to yell at mom or dad is an oxymoron.

In most situations during early childhood children tend to do what they think their parent would do. That’s just how learning during childhood goes.

The following shares why children stop listening when someone is yelling at them and may help you switch from yelling to correct behavior to using teaching discipline. Using teaching discipline, instead of yelling, will also afford you the opportunity to say to your child, “I stopped yelling at you, and I would like you to stop yelling at me.”

Yelling happens in most families at one time or another. Most parents rationalize it by saying, I’m simply sending the message that, “I say what I mean, and mean what I say!”

There are two big problems with yelling. The first is, there’s a really good chance your child doesn’t really comprehend the words you’re saying when you’re yelling. The second problem is that yelling can cause a great deal of emotional damage to a child’s self-esteem if the parent is screaming, being mean, or attacking a child’s character.

Most parents’ think the louder they get, the firmer they appear to their child. Actually, the opposite is true. The more yelling you do, the less your child can hear you. Why?

Children tend to withdraw just a little bit in order to withstand the intensity of your yelling.

Watch your child the next time you yell. You’ll see her shift her attention from the yelling and words you’re saying and slightly shut down.

She’s doing what any human being would do when being yelled at, moving her attention from the words and loud sounds to emotionally protecting herself from the onslaught of your anger.

Yelling stops her comprehension too. Instead of clearly hearing your words, you begin to sound like a Charlie Brown adult sounds, “mwa, mwa maw mwa” making it difficult to listen, think about what you’re saying and comply. 

When you stop yelling and she emerges from emotionally withdrawing she’s probably crying, whining, yelling back at you or creating more misbehavior. This reignites a parents’ anger and makes a parent feel forced to resort to punishment.

However, if you stop yelling as step one, you may never need to deal with the reactions your child has to your yelling.

So the next time you yell at your child and say, “Listen to me right now, I’m talking to you,” or “Don’t you dare yell at me!” Take a breath and realize that your child has begun to model how you react ,because she knows no better at this age. This simple change will help you gain a better chance of her really hearing you.

Sharon Silver is the author of Stop Reacting and Start Responding: 108 Ways to Discipline Consciously and Become the Parent You Want to Be, and the monthly Online Skills Class, a local, national and international anytime e-class providing parents with solutions for reacting, correcting behavior, outbursts and more to create the parenting instruction manual you always wished came with your child! Click here to receive 2 FREE tips from Sharon's book. Find Sharon on Twitter and Facebook

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

24/7 Modern Mom March 25, 2012 at 07:17 AM
Sharon, can I use your article on my Macaroni Kid site? Give me a call if you'd like. http://www.hayward.macaronikid.com
Sharon Silver April 01, 2012 at 12:06 AM
24/7 Modern Mom, I would be honored if you used my article. So sorry that I didn't get back to you sooner. Life swallowed me whole this week! What do you want me to do next? Go to my website and email me from there. www.proactiveparenting.net. Thanks Sharon ~ Proactive Parenting


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