Different parents cope with stress, anger and frustration in different manners. Some of them take a break, acknowledge their state of mind and calm down, other are impulsive and loud. In many cases, the latter get to raise their voice at their children. Yes, unfortunately, there are a lot of parents who yell at their babies and their attitude can bring a lot of harm to their little ones.
First of all, yelling makes the baby afraid and nervous, wounds and inhibits his feelings and, later on, his confidence. It can be very damaging, especially when parents begin shouting at the infant when he is very little. On the other hand, parents shouting at each other do as much harm as shouting at the baby.
Most often, yelling comes with verbal abuse. When nervous or stressed, a parent tends to use mean words, besides shouting, like threats, blaming, comparing or discouraging (for example: “If you don’t stop screaming I will punish you!”, “It’s all your fault!” , “Why can you be more like your brother!?” or “You never do it right!”). As everybody knows, language is a key component in an infant’s development. Parents should learn to carefully choose their language when talking to their baby, no matter the situation, otherwise the baby might no longer feel that he is loved unconditionally, that he is no longer safe and secure at home. More than this, the child may, later, develop concentration problems, low self esteem, isolation and anxiety.
Although not many parents admit it, there are a lot of them who can’t abstain from yelling at their kids. Even if it is hard to control your outburst, there are a few things that can help.
- Take a moment and think about why you lost your temper.
- Take a deep breath while you think of a way to communicate with your child.
- Calmly explain to your infant why you are angry or upset.
- Try to come with a solution together.
Practicing the above atitude will become easier in time.
There are a lot of great resources that can help you change your attitude.
A great book about the subject Yell Less, Love More, by Sheila McCraith. The author presents some practical, simple solutions to keep you focused on loving more and yelling less, no matter what the circumstance.
For parents with older children, Elizabeth Pantley’s Kid Cooperation: How to Stop Yelling, Nagging, and Pleading and Get Kids to Cooperate might be a helpful reading.
A funny, illustrated, educational parenting book that is worth reading is No Yelling!: A Baby Blues Collection, by Rick Kirkman and Jerry Scott.
Always remember… a responsible parent shows his unconditional love and treats his infant with respect, no matter his baby’s age or the situation he is confronting with.