I will never forget the day I decided to lock myself in the bathroom when I was having a shower, not thinking of the consequences it was going to have. This would be the first time I had locked a bathroom door since my kids were born. I was in the shower for two minutes when all hell broke loose. My two kids started kicking and banging the door and screaming their heads off. I ran out of the bathroom still covered in soap in such a temper with them. I yelled so loud at them to stop screaming at me and told them to go straight to bed because they were being bold.
They looked at me with such little sad scared faces. Later that night when I eventually calmed down after lots of tears and soul searching I thought to myself, Who am I to be yelling and making my kids feel scared? They are only little human beings that look up to me and I came across like the big bad wolf. They were not being bold, they panicked because they felt like i’d shut them out by locking the door. This is not a way of teaching discipline to my children.
Discipline is most commonly associated with punishment but it is a form of liberation. Growing up in an environment with loud voices, however, can cripple the mental health of a child. Once you yell at a child, they will have no choice but to listen to it because they will have no escape.
Yelling, therefore, has some serious effects on parents and children. These include:
Yelling affects the self-confidence of children. The child is bound to feel less respected and less valued if a parent shouts at them. Children who are victims of verbal abuse will not see themselves as worthy individuals. Yelling will therefore make them question themselves and affect their confidence. It will then have long term repercussions about themselves in their schools and clubs.
Yelling will also have serious effects on children’s concentration problems. Concentration problems are a major concern amongst those who have been yelled at for a long period of time. Therefore, lack of concentration is a direct result of emotional abuse and yelling. Since yelling is correlated with mental health, it will cause one to have lack of concentration for a long period of time. This will then affect the child’s focus and their ability to learn new things in the classroom.
Yelling will also affect the child’s mental health in the sense that it will increase their aggression. Children who have been shouted at, since the age of 4-5, will exhibit aggressive behaviors. The kids will then start to have problems in social settings with their peers as well. They will try to succumb towards their natural space by biting, hitting and pushing. Children who are exposed to yelling should then be taught to manage and control their anger because they are more likely to showcase these results towards others. Professional counselling, therefore, is really important when you treat aggressive behaviors amongst children.
Fear is also a common concern amongst children who are yelled at. Children are always frightened of the loud voices if the voices are deep. Even though a child may not react instantly to shouting there and then, they might develop a lot of fear internally if the shouting continues for years. This will then cause the child to struggle in social settings and developing friendships. It will also have a serious impact on their ability to deal with conflicts and they will most likely withdraw from difficult situations than resolve them effectively.
Parents, on the other hand, are also affected by yelling. Yelling affects their health as it causes increased aggression and frustration. Moreover, yelling is also bound to increase their blood pressure because yelling is not at all good for the health. Moreover, parents are also bound to feel bad after they yell at their kids because yelling will then make them feel guilt for taking out their frustrations on their children.
Give yourself a few minutes try to collect your thoughts and calm down before you react. Take a a parent time out. Is going in shouting going to help any situation or does it make it worse? How would you react if someone shouted at you? The calm approach is usually best. Your mind thinks different when you are in a temper and sometimes things are said and done that cannot be taken back.
It’s easier to hear when the voice is calm but yet firm. You also need to show you are in control. Get down to their level and make eye contact. It’s intimidating for them when they are looking up at someone shouting. Why is the child behaving like they are? Maybe they are just trying to get my attention? They are not adults and their thinking is not yet fully developed like ours. Respect and listen to what they are saying and emphasize with them. They are not acting up just to annoy you, even though it can feel like that at times. Parenting is a learning curve and it’s quite hard at times as we are also learning about ourselves each day. We may not get it right all the time but it’s always best to find an alternative of any situation.
Thus, yelling has both serious effects on the child and the parent and it is something that should try be avoided at all costs.
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