Learning to stop yelling is like trying to rid yourself of a nervous tick you’ve had for the past 20 years. It’s an overwhelmingly hard habit to break. The conscious thought involved to keep yourself from yelling can be exhausting, especially in the beginning.
That was the beginning of my stop yelling journey.
In the beginning, it was a legitimate struggle to seek out alternatives when yelling seemed so much easier. As time wore on, things became easier and I started to see the improvement of my true effort to stop yelling.
The ideas and techniques I was using were working!
It was such an encouraging feeling!
However when I first started my stop yelling journey, I had no idea that re-training myself would be the easier hurdle to conquer. It never dawned on me that my biggest struggle in transforming our household into a stop yelling home was yet to come.
My biggest struggle.
Parenting is beautiful and rewarding journey. It enriches your life in ways you never imagined. But I think it’s honest and very fair to say that parenting is also very hard. Many days it’s a downright struggle.
You know my biggest struggle in my stop yelling journey?
Learning to co-parent as a team. Learning to stop yelling as two parents working together. Learning to get my husband to join along in my mission to stop yelling was harder than I ever imagined.
Getting the other parent on board.
Initially, I thought I would just tell my husband that we weren’t going to yell anymore and that would be the end of it and we would live happily non-yelling forever. Yeah, that didn’t work.
So here are a few tips and tricks that I found success with along my stop yelling journey:
Lead by example. Sometimes the only way to get another parent to see your vision is to allow him to see it in action. Allow your spouse to see the different techniques you are using not to yell. Allow your spouse to see that it’s working.
Share your victories. I am a stay-at-home parent and my husband works out of the home. One of the things I started doing was sharing one stop yelling victory with him every day when he came home. I would say things like…
I tried whispering instead of yelling and it worked.
I tried shaking it off first instead of yelling and it worked.
I tried getting closer instead of yelling and it worked.
After sharing my little victory, I shared the whole story about everything that happened. Overtime, these stories helped him see that my stop yelling journey was making parenting easier for me.
Share little snippets of info.
You know how you can tell your spouse something but they don’t really see how great it really is? And then someone else tells them the exact same thing and all of a sudden it seems really great?
This is why I wanted to share with my husband what others were saying about how to stop yelling. I wanted him to know that other families were doing this with success. I wanted him to see that other parenting experts were sharing that this was a great idea too.
Here’s what I did.
I would simply read a blog post or article online, and if I liked it and found it useful, I would say, “I just read this great article on my phone, you should check it out.” And then I would hand him the article to read. After he read it, I would ask him what he thought and we would talk about it. Overtime, the idea seemed to grow on him more and more.
Where we are today.
One day I came home from a day of errands, and as I was putting away some groceries, my husband came up to me to share something. He had been caring for our son the whole day, while I was away, and what he said next made me smile,
“I was reading one of those blog posts that you shared with me. It said that I should whisper or sing my words to help kids listen better. So I tried whispering and it worked. And then I tried singing and that worked too.”
He went on to share all the details of his first successful non-yelling day. My husband and I aren’t perfect non-yelling parents. Far from it actually. We are both continually traveling along our stop yelling journey and making progress every day, week and month.
Getting my husband on board wasn’t easy.
It took a while, but eventually he joined along too.
And I’m so glad he did.
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Lauren Tamm is a military wife, stay-at-home mom, and author of the blog The Military Wife and Mom. She spends her days drinking coffee and chasing around a rambunctious toddler. Connect with her on Facebook or Pinterest!