I shout too much. I seem to find myself in the position of Army Major, where I am barking (shouting) at my family, mainly my kids, a lot. I have plenty of what seem like reasonable excuses. I am tired, I am busy, I am under a lot of pressure, I am juggling many things that mean I have to keep life in order, and a lot of the time, my children don’t seem to want to or have the ability to cooperate. When the house is a mess, despite my trying my best to tidy it to a reasonable standard, I shout. When we are running late in the morning despite constant reminders and creative efforts to get out of the door on time, I yell, when bedtime is going to hell in a handbasket, I yell. When the cat pukes all over my bed, I yell… You get the picture? I get frustrated, and I raise my voice. I know I am not alone in this, it’s something I have discussed many times with my fellow parents and friends. We are frustrated and we loose our cool, or shouting seems to be the only way to get anything done or to be listened to. This post and This post by Orange Rhino have got me thinking about how bad it’s got and that I do shout a lot, sometimes maybe for good reasons, but often it’s because I just can’t seem to be able to react any other way.
I will admit to being skeptical about being able to parent without having to raise my voice. Sometimes, it even feels good to shout, when my children really have not listened or done what I ask, or life isn’t going the way it should. But it is starting to make me feel awful and my children don’t like it. I have also noticed that not only am I yelling, but now my children yell more too.
I don’t want to be one of those sanctimonious parent bloggers telling other people how perfect my parenting is (if I ever get like that, please someone tell me and I will shut the blog down!) but I do want to parent better and right now I don’t feel like I am doing a good job, of that.
My aim is to reduce the shouting and yelling. To look at what makes me shout, and try and either circumvent that or deal with things in a better way. I don’t know if it will work, or if it is actually possible. I think I am going to give it a try.
So, this is my initial blog post. Next Monday, I will be starting a series of blog posts writing about my progress, or as the skeptic in me thinks, lack of progress (because at this point I really don’t think it can be done, at least I don’t think I can do it) and I will share how I & we are getting on. I might even get the kids to write about how it is going. That will be honest and probably fairly brutal.
So, what do you think? Can you parent without shouting? Is it possible to run life as a busy parent without raising your voice. Can you discipline and cope with life with children without yelling?
Watch this space…?