Not only is yelling/beating harmful to kids, but it also isn’t an effective discipline strategy. Here are some of the reasons why you may want to think twice before raising your voice:
Yelling/beating makes behavior problems worse. Yelling/beating creates a perpetuating cycle – the more parents yell, the worse kids behave, which in turn leads to more yelling and beating. To break this cycle, it’s important to commit to using alternative discipline practices that don’t involve yelling or beating.
Kids become desensitized to the volume. The first time you yell at a child, it’s likely to grab his attention. But, the more you yell, the less effective if it is. When kids reside in homes where there is frequent yelling and beating, they get used to it.
Yelling or beating increases a parent’s frustration. If you’re already feeling frustrated by your child’s behavior, yelling will only increase your arousal level. Raising your voice can quickly turn slight irritation into outright anger. It also increases the likelihood that you’ll say insulting remarks or use overly harsh criticism.
Kids learn that yelling or beating is a good approach to conflict. When you yell, you’re role modeling how to deal with anger and conflict. Your child will imitate those behaviors when he’s dealing with his peers and siblings.
Yelling or beating doesn’t involve teaching. Yelling at or beating a child to, “Stop doing that,” doesn’t show him what to do instead. Kids need to learn skills to help them regulate their emotions and manage their behavior so they don’t repeat the same mistakes.
Losing control means losing respect. It’s hard for kids to instill a lot of trust and respect in someone who calls them names or yells or beats them. Sometimes kids think, “If you can’t control yourself, how are you going to control me?” As a result, they’re less likely to want to please you and they’re less likely to value your opinion.
Yelling or beating doesn’t work. Ultimately, yelling/beating doesn’t work. If it did, parents wouldn’t have to do it so much. However, most parents find that they are yelling/beating more often, instead of less. Other consequences, such as taking away privileges, can be much more effective in managing a child’s behavior.
Most parents don’t want to yell at or beat their kids, however, they do so out of frustration. When kids don’t listen or when they’re breaking the rules, you need a plan for how you’re going to discipline without yelling or beating.
Here’s how to discipline without yelling or beating:
Establish Clear Rules
You’ll be less likely to resort to yelling or beat if you’ve established clear rules. Keep a written list of household rules prominently displayed.
When rules are broken, follow through with an immediate consequence. Resist the urge to yell, nag, or lecture as your words aren’t likely to teach your child to do better next time.
Yelling/beating often leads to a power struggle – The more you yell or beat a child to do something, the more defiant she might become. A clear warning that you plan to enforce shows your child that you’re serious about being in charge.
Are you with me?