On Yelling.

I feel like I yell too much. 
I feel like I’ve always yelled too much. 
You see, I have a large family. I’ve always been rather large, struggling to be heard over all the other voices. Because mine is important too.
And when I felt like someone wasn’t listening to me? I’d just yell louder.
Not much has changed, I’m still “loud Jessie” who only seems to have one level: LOUD. 
I still get flustered and rather mad when I feel like somebody isn’t listening.
So you can imagine how well I’m coping with a toddler.
Nolan doesn’t really listen, he has a huge case of Toddler Selective Hearing and only hears what he wants to hear.
I could give him simple instructions {please pick up your toys, please don’t touch the cat, please stay away from the tree, etc etc} and he’ll act like he didn’t hear me utter a word. Yet if I so much as whisper “chocolate” or “cookies” the kid is all ears. 
Picture this. I’m sitting on the sofa, nursing Archer. He’s finally latched on properly after arguing with my overactive let-down. Nolan decides it’s the perfect time to cause trouble of some kind or another. Usually, it’s pulling his wooden chair over to the counter to try and climb up to reach his Chocolate Advent Calender, or it involves the Christmas tree or cat in some way shape or form. Or, it involves jumping up and down. On the kitchen table. 
I gently call his name. “Nolan. Noooolan,”, and receive either radio silence or a mischievously tossed smile over his shoulder as he continues causing trouble.
Then I tell him firmly to stop doing whatever it is he’s doing that I don’t want him to do.
He suddenly can’t hear me, {or he outright tells me NO!} so I call his name louder. “NOLAN! DO NOT KICK THE CAT!
I’m met with giggles, and the silent refusal to not listen to me. 
Nada. The threat is lost on him.
Drives me nuts.
I hate yelling. I don’t want to be that mom, but I can’t seem to be able to keep my Michelle Duggar voice when he tests my patience like this. I’m loud by nature. Always have been, always will be. Michelle Duggar calm has never been my style, I freak out over everything.
But…I do try, I try to be calm and zen like. I want to be calm and zen like, but I don’t think the whole wanting to be can make you actually be
Sometimes I can be calm. Oddly enough, in crazy situations, somehow the mom takes over and can calmly guide through such situations. Like the poop play-d’oh incident a few weeks back.
Don’t ask.
Or when Matt is the one who is all OMG I’M SO MAD RAWR, then I can keep my Michelle Duggar voice because someone has to play good cop, am I right?!
Or do we not play “good cop/bad cop” anymore?
Anyways. Toddler’s who don’t listen are my kryptonite.
And time outs don’t always work, because my kid is smarter than I am and when I tell him to sit and stay on the chair…I get things like this:
But MOOOM, I’m still ON the chair!
I know that at this age, kids are testing boundaries and all that jazz. I’m trying to teach my kid to Listen To Every Word I Say Because My Word Is LAW but he just seems to think it’s all a fantastic, fun joke. Like I could never actually hold authority over him . He does humor me, some times. But for the most part? Nolan marches to the beat of his own drum.
Which is great and all, but come on kid, listen?! Just a little?!
Sometimes, I catch myself silently pleading with the Higher Beings up there to have him at least listen to me when we’re out in public, cause nothing sucks more than trying to chase your toddler back into the EYC classroom while you try to keep yourself covered and the baby latched on to your boob still.
How do you cope with your toddler’s “Testing of Boundaries”? Are you Michelle Duggar calm or Freak the Eff out Fanny like me?
Also…any tips on how to get my toddler to realize that I AM THE BOSS DAMNIT?!
Cause I am boss, damnit.

About J.C. Hannigan

25. Mother. Wife. Lover of words. Weaver of stories. My first book, Collide, is available in e-book for Amazon Kindle and Kobo.
This entry was posted in family, honesty, I talk to hear myself speak, not so perfect, parenthood, struggles. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to On Yelling.

  1. Dani says:

    This post could have been written by me. I'm loud. I yell. I yell lots and loudly. I didn't come from an overly large family, but my father has been hearing impaired since birth. So we are a loud family. I don't really have any advice for you, I can only say don't be too hard on yourself, you're certainly not the only mom working on trying not to yell so darn much

  2. I think the LOUD thing comes with being a Jessica. I swear to you, my nickname with friends was always, LOUD JESS. Every other Jessica I know is loud too. So don't feel bad.

    I'm sorry he doesn't listen, it's a phase, he'll get over it.
    Maybe try some kind of reward system thing? Like he starts out with so many stickers (something else) for the day and every time he doesn't listen he looses one… then do a reward at the end of the night… if he didn't loose any, like an extra cookie or story… something like that? Idk, just thinking.

    Love the keep calm quote!

  3. Oh gosh. I wish I had advice to offer. All I can really say is thank you for writing this because I can truly relate. And I feel a hair less guilty in knowing I'm not alone. Landon listens. He will scream at the top of his lungs no matter where we are when told no, but he usually doesn't disobey or ignore me. Hannah is an entirely different story. I just don't know what to do with her. She NEVER listens. I yell at least 5 times a day. At least. Blah.

  4. jess ♥ says:

    @Dani: Thank you! It's good to know I'm not alone haha. 🙂

    @Beautiful Mess: haha it MUST be!! Our name does mean “bubbly,” which my mom used to say was a polite way of saying “loud & in your face” O_o good to know I'm not alone, and I love that quote too haha!! I hope he starts listening soon. It's driving me NUTSO haha!

    @Danielle-Marie: BLARG. I hope that means that at least Archer will listen to me? haha. And no problem, I totally don't mind writing about my less than perfect parenting flaws. 🙂 you are not alone! And neither am I 😉

  5. Heather says:

    Michelle Duggar voice, HAHAHAHA. That women amazes me at how calm she is.

    I am NOT that person.

  6. jessi ♥ says:

    @Heather: LOL! I know, right? Matt always says that Jesus must mix her martinis in the basement…hey, no judgment. I wish Jesus would mix ME martinis ahah!

  7. dramaticmama says:

    This post could have been written by myself except not as well written.
    I yell all the time. I hate it. It makes things worse, I understand I am doing something “wrong” yet I still do it. I feel like, if I yell louder, maybe D will actually listen to me? He's getting into this stage where he too is becoming selectively hearing. It's extremely frustrating and I can't handle it. Some days I am ok, but most…not so much. I KNOW he KNOWS what I am asking him to do, but he looks at me, with a SMILE and continues…taunting me, testing me, and GRRRR! >.< This post has inspired me to write something up about this as well. Good for you for speaking the truth because your not alone.

  8. jessi ♥ says:

    @dramaticmama: I'm the same way, I think if I yell louder he'll listen. Doesn't work lol. But then and again, neither does talking softly! I can't win? Can't wait to read your post on it. 🙂

  9. hi, jessi.. just came over for a peek after reading your post at letters to ames.

    just wanted to give a little input on the “yelling” topic. here's what i TRY to live by and remember when working up to the yelling point.. just like everything else, we teach our kids when to respond to us. if they know we don't mean business until we scream at them, then that's what they learn to wait and obey after. if they know there will be a consequence after the first or second time of us giving them instruction, they will learn to respond to that. in my experience, it's hard for every parent to keep from yelling or raising their voice, but i'm striving to work to the point where my girl knows that if she doesn't obey, there will be discipline, instead of if she doesn't obey, i'll yell. my mom was a yeller, i know i'm prone to it, and it's not something i want to pass on to my daughter.

    best of luck to you!

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