Monday, February 11, 2013

how loud is your voice?

most of the time sometimes my beautiful children infuriate me. & the husband.
both of us- enraged, one 3 year old- defiant & one 2 year old- destroying all the things.
it's a recipe for disaster.

i'm a "omg are you freaking serious right now, what the heck, why are you, didn't i say, omg omg omg, just stop it right now!!?!!?!" kind of person. my voice starts off low, steady & reasoning & then it climbs & i reach a pretty impressive octave that lies somewhere between a soprano & a 1/2 screech.

the husband is a "ENOUGH!!!!" kind of guy where it starts & ends with yelling. man yelling- pure & simple.

i've pretty much been under the assumption that my "yelling" is way less worse than his. like the other night, when alex wouldn't go to sleep to save her life. the husband was trying to reason but alex was having none of it. so yelling ensued. storming up the stairs ensued & "omg what is her problem!?" questions ensued.

i was dealing with 2 very tired individuals. one had worked for 12 hours straight & still needed to go outside & shovel. the other has given up naps but still expends enough energy throughout the day to warrant one.

Lord help me. so i trekked downstairs & asked alex what was wrong. she got all sniffly & exclaimed, "i'm sad because daddy is mad at me!" oh my. so i tried to explain that he wasn't mad, he was just tired & frustrated & she really needed to go to sleep so we could wake up & have fun & yadda yadda.

nope. not working. so i went upstairs & shook my finger at the husband, "YOU need to go downstairs & explain to your daughter that you ARE NOT mad at her! she's very upset! stop yelling so much!!! A POX ON YOU!!!"

he sighed, went downstairs & legit 5 minutes later all was well. i went back down to a beaming 3 year old who informed me that she liked daddy more than me (side-eye) & then headed back upstairs to a weary 33 year old who had moved on from the whole incident & was cursing the weather gods.

but i wasn't over it, oh no. i layed in. HE needed to stop yelling! HE needed to realize that yelling doesn't help! HE needed to understand that HIM yelling & me "raising my voice" are 2 VERY different things.

him: " yell too you know."
me: "HARDLY! i just, like, raise my voice a little!"
him: "yeah, that's called yelling."

touche husband. touche.

the conversation ended with a laugh & a quick discussion that we need to yell less & talk more. ok cool.
but quite a few conversations have ended that way, & yet we still yell. BOTH of us. & while his yelling might be louder & more scary- my yelling is no better.

sometimes after i "raise my voice a little" brynn says, "mommy, you not mad!"
well, clearly i am kid.
but i really don't want to be. i want to yell less. i want the husband to yell less. i want our home to be a bit more peaceful.

so now, how? how do we move from the yelling that we are so accustomed to, to something else. because it's freaking hard. i've tried the, "well i'm just not going to yell. so there." approach & i think it lasted all of 1 day before i caved.

seriously guys- i'm lost. help me. what are your tips & tricks for a yell free home life?

i mean, i do think yelling has it's place. like, when your kid is about to run into danger or when you just need to be heard above ALL THE NOISE! but i feel like our (my house) fuses are super short at times & the yelling that goes on isn't warranted. so a different approach is needed.

& i'm serious about it this time. because, unless it's the fun kind of yelling that goes along with this:

i'm tired of it, you know?
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Diana said...

I have really been struggling with this lately too!! I definitely fear yelling too much at my kids, especially because I was yelled at a lot as a kid. When my almost 3-year-old started yelling back (or yelling out of the blue) I was ashamed. Lately, I have been trying really hard to take a deep breath and stop myself from yelling, even if I catch myself mid yell, and speak calmly but firmly. Sometimes, for the really bad times, I have to put her in another room, say to her "I am angry right now so I cannot talk to you," and then walk away. When I am calmed down, I can deal with her better, and normally she has realized more from my walking away how upset I am and is ready to apologize.

Another huge thing for me lately (and more humbling for sure) is looking at WHY I am yelling and why she is acting out. Is it because I have not been paying attention to her one on one? Is it because I am frustrated and aggravated because I am not getting enough done (probably because I have been on the computer too much)? A lot of times, my yelling is rooted more in myself than my kids.

And lots and lots of prayer and accountability from other moms. I am reading an awesome book called "Desperate- Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe," and that is really encouraging me.

I love your blog, btw. Congrats on #3!!!

breedwoman said...

Oh I'm a yeller... I try not to be but i just get so ticked off so easily, whether it's at the hubs or the kids...

One thing that has helped us is marbles. Kinsley can earn a marble for good behavior, for going to bed without problems, for listening/obeying the first time. But she can also lose a marble for the same things.

It's actually helped a lot. If she is pitching a fit i tell her she will lose a marble if she doesn't stop... sometimes she'll stop, other times she loses a marble. If she handed her brother a toy to play with just to be nice, she earns a marble. She loves it! Then when she gets 30 marbles she gets to do something like get her nails done, or something she equally enjoys.

Tonight though she went straight to bed with no dinner. she didn't want to eat what i made and chose to go to bed rather than eat it. (she did have a good bit of snacks...) but there were no tears (this time...)

good luck... three sucks... i can't wait to go through it again in 2 years with Parker! ha

Marissa said...

Let me know what you find, the hubs and I have had this same convo this week. I have a sassy six year old and a terrible two year old. Lord help us all!

Anonymous said...

Well Im in the same boat....sailing right up shit creek ...we yell all day long....i want to stop. Really...I DO! But 5 and 3 year olds who live to EFF shit up make it kinda hard. Let me know what you find HA!

Bridgett Nicolace-Bird said...

dude, Jim's anger switch has an "off" and and an "on". There is no middle ground. at all. Literally goes from zero to sixty in a flash. It irritates the ever loving crap out of me. I have a feeling it's a "Bird" thing. Not a huge fan. I used to react, now I just walk away and tell him to come talk to me when he's done yelling. I don't even give a reaction. This usually leads to a small fit which is followed with silence. The silence kills him. But it sends a pretty clear message that I'm not participating. Homey don't play that.

Shellsuff said...

This. is. my. life.