Parenting Tip: But I Have To Yell To Be Heard

Got this tip from an email subscription… The topic is close to home.. sometimes, I find myself yelling just to be heard… I think I have to re-evaluate myself…

Do you find yourself yelling sometimes just to be heard? Does the yelling frustrate you but you feel there’s no other way? We find that parents often yell when they don’t have a plan. Some parents don’t know how to fix a problem with their kids so they become louder, thinking that the intensity created through yelling will have some kind of positive effect. It doesn’t work.

Motivating with harshness can keep children in line or get them to accomplish a task, but that method damages family relationships. In Jeremiah 10:24, Jeremiah prays, “Correct me, Lord, but only with justice—not in your anger, lest you reduce me to nothing.” In the end, it is closeness that provides parents with teachable moments and the relaxed enjoyment of family life. Yelling and harshness discourage trust, essential to help young people learn valuable principles about life.

You might be saying, “Wait a minute! My kids won’t obey unless I get angry.” If that’s true, then maybe you’ve trained your children to respond to your anger as a signal that it’s time to obey. Kids are smart. They know they can wait until the last minute before responding. They’ve figured out how many warnings you’ll give and they recognize the tone of voice that says you’re ready to deliver a consequence.

One solution is to teach children to respond to a different cue. If yelling is the sign that you mean business, then change the cue to a more constructive signal. If you teach your kids that you’ll back up your words sooner, without anger, then your dependency on anger to get things done will decrease.

This parenting tip comes from the book Good and Angry, Exchanging Frustration for Character in You and Your Kids by Dr Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN,BSN.


  1. Great tip! I used to yell then, but I realized it doesn't really work. I learned that telling them calmly but with authority is much better. They know that I mean it.

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  2. Rose Belle says

    It's hard at times to bite down my tongue and not raise my voice. Instead, I make sure I'm calm and can express what I wanted to say so that my kids understand. Kids will only see the ugly and angry side of their parents when we shout and yell at them which they may pick up in life so, as their guide and coach in life, we need to show better restraint. Great post btw.

  3. This also hits home for me. I am quite guilty and I totally regret yelling afterwards. And my daughter also responds to me in anger, so it's really not a good way to get my point across. Thanks for sharing!

  4. They yell when they don't have a plan" I think that's where I start to go wrong – having no plan. With a full-time job and with the caregiver gone, I know my case as a single parent seriously needs reinforcement of whatever kind. My time to plan is getting even less and less nowadays that I'm going full-blast with my PhD preparations.

    Hi Chris, I saw your title as I breezed thru my blog today, en route to work. And admittedly, I yell, scream but most of it into the pillow or in the bathroom. Have a nice day. Thanks for the post.

  5. i second the motion chris.. sometimes, i can't help but yell at samantha. i know she is still too young to understand my actions and i know i hurt her by doing this. i should be more careful na… thanks for sharing this one.

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