Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Yelling Game

I hate it. No seriously, I hate it.

“Stop this!” “Stop that!”

“What are you doing?!”


Having a 6 month old and an almost 3 year old means that you can’t always chase after your 3 year old and correct her/him when they are going down the path towards destruction. So, what do we do? We yell! It’s really not a pretty sight. When we see someone else doing it, we shake our heads. Sometimes we remark, “Oh my God, WHY IS SHE YELLING LIKE THAT?” Sometimes we look down our noses because at that particular moment our child is being the picture perfect toddler: “Yes Mommy” “Please…Thank you…. Your Welcome.”

But when we’re the one in the spotlight, we either do one of two things:

1.        We attempt to mask our anger by doing the gritting teeth whisper yell:

“You better get your act together right now or else!” We threaten in an awkward last-resort whisper, hoping our child will be intimidated by the accompanied scowl.


2.        We just loose it:

“Get your butt up off the floor right now _____! Do you hear me! Do you hear me!” We have really lost all reasoning by this point. At this point we have completely lost control of our child and our emotions. Usually this action makes everything much worse. Whatever was initially wrong with the child will now be amplified. Rage is met with rage. And the whole ordeal is both emotionally and physically distressing.

However, most yelling takes place in the home. This may seem more appropriate than a public show of rage, but the home is supposed to be the one place we can be at ease; our place of rest and recuperation after a stressful day out. So, as a parent, when I yell in my home, I am creating a hostile atmosphere.

I used to argue with my brother a lot from the ages of 10-14. He was older, but I was not intimidated by him, and did not accept the concept of sonority when it came to anything. We would argue over silly things, like what to watch on television. Sometimes we would be in a yelling match, calling each other hurtful names, and I don’t even know how it all started. Then my brother went to college and my yelling was retired.

…Until now. Having a two year old has revived this ugly trait from my past. I rarely even yell in my marriage because as an adult, I have grown to hate confrontation. Yet as I sit here now and write this blog, my voice is actually hoarse. I don’t think a day goes by that I don’t yell at my daughter. It is sad and it is exhausting. Ruqi is a normal toddler, with lots of energy, imagination and curiosity to explore everything within her reach. With a baby on board, I do not have the time to calmly walk her through every moment of her life, explaining what is right and what is wrong. It all started while I was pregnant; battling sickness, fatigue, and all the emotional ups and downs of pregnancy, my fuse was short.

The other factor is that Ruqi shows that she understands so much, so perhaps I confuse her understanding of certain things with actual comprehension. For instance, I will see how gently she interacts with the baby, so I trust her to play with her sister without hurting her. What a misjudgment on my part! Most of the time she is gentle and soft and her sister adores her, but then there are the times when she grabs Saji’s face in her hands and squeezes and it all happens so fast that all I hear is Saji screeching for help. So, of course I yell, and I yell loud. It’s to the point that Ruqi isn’t even affected by my yelling anymore. So why do I do it? It obviously isn’t working.

I bought Dr. Sears’s “The Dicipline Book” and it’s great. In typical Dr. Sears fashion, the book is more about training parents than it is about training children. So, I recommend it to anyone who might have a yelling problem or any other roadblock in their parenting. And prayer, prayer always works…


lala said...

i have a barely 2 year old and 5 month old. booooyyy do i know how you feel. i ask allah swt for forgiveness all the time, lol. seriously though its not funny. i do not abuse my children but i hate yelling that much and yeah its upsetting. i'll def check out the book, and i wanna rec imam sajjad's (as) supplications for our children. you can prob google it but i just liked it. anyway you'll be in my duas sis... im sure you're a great mom :)

Muslim Mommy said...

Thank you so much lala! We sisters have to stick together and support each other. We are trying to live according to the qur'an and sunnah in a world that tells us to do the oppisite! I will look up the supplication, inshaAllah.

A sister once told me she would get up in the middle of the night while her babies were sleeping and she would just sip tea. I thought that was great, we have have to pray, drink tea, and talk to Allah. Another woman told me, "mothering is hard when you are doing it right." So, inshaAllah we are doing it right! May Allah guide us to deal with our families justly and find some calm admist the storm! Ameen.

Anonymous said...

I hear and used to always, everyday feel just liked you do. My first daughter I make an extra effort with because the other three came along soo quickly invading her time and I feel like she was made to grow up quickly. Subhanllah we mother's no matter what we do will worry we aren't doing a god job with our little one's. May we be rewarded much for our efforts because we are working really hard!
Just try to at least once a week spend quality time with her and her only and if that is hard for you then when little one is sleeping just do painting, drawing and sit together talking to each other. My biggest and only regret regarding my life was not spacing out my kids al little more so Bilqees had more attention but it is all Allah's Will and we simply just have to go with the flow. I laugh when people ask me my children's ages...I watch their eyebrows rise! lol

Muslim Mommy said...

Thank so much Sanaa, so I must ask... What are you children's ages!?