10 Things I Learned When I Stopped Yelling At My Kids

399 days of loving more!

Someone asked me this past weekend, “So, what were your findings from not yelling for a year? Did you learn anything?” Huh. Pretty good question. And it got me thinking, “Well, what did I learn?” I’ll tell you this; I learned a lot, a lot more than I can possible fit in a blog post! So I share with you the top 10 things that I learned from my Orange Rhino Challenge where I promised to not yell at my 4 boys for 365 days straight.

1. Yelling isn’t the only thing I haven’t done in a year (399 days to be exact!)
I also haven’t gone to bed with a gut-wrenching pit in my stomach because I felt like the worst mom ever. I haven’t bawled to my husband that I yelled again and again. And I haven’t heard my sons scream, “You’re the meanest, worstest, mommy in the whole world, I don’t love you anymore!” Yep, I learned real quickly that there are upsides to not yelling!

2. My kids are my most important audience.
When I had my “no more yelling epiphany,” I realized that I don’t yell in the presence of others because I want them to believe I am a loving and patient mom.  The truth is, I already was that way…but rarely when I was alone, just always when I was in public with an audience to judge me. This is so backwards! I always have an audience – my four boys are always watching me and THEY are the audience that matters most; they are the ones I want to show just how loving, patient and “yell-free” I can be. I want my boys to judge me and proclaim, “My mommy is the bestest mommy ever!” I remember this whenever I am home and thinking I can’t keep it together; obviously I can…I do it out and about all the time!

3. Kids are just kids; and not just kids, but people too.
Like me, my kids have good days and bad days. Some days they are pleasant and sweet and listen really well; other days they are grumpy and difficult. By the way, I am always sweet and never difficult. Always. Ha! And like all kids, my boys are loud at times, they refuse to put their shoes on, and they color on the wall, especially if it is covered in brand new wallpaper that mommy loves. So, yeah, I need to watch my expectations and remember that my boys are kids: they are still learning, still growing, and still figuring out how to handle waking up on the wrong side of the bed. When they “make mistakes” I need to remember that not only does yelling not help, but like me, they don’t like to be yelled at!

4. I can’t always control my kids’ actions, but I can always control my reaction.
I can try my hardest to follow all the parenting tricks of the trade for well-disciplined children, but since my kids are just kids, they sometimes won’t do what I want. I can decide if I want to scream “Pick up your Legos! ” when they don’t listen or if I want to walk away for a second, regain composure by doing some jumping jacks, and then return with a new approach. P.S. Walking away and taking a breather can actually get the Legos picked up faster than yelling.

5. Yelling doesn’t work.
There were numerous times when I wanted to quit my Orange Rhino Challenge, when I thought yelling would just be easier than finding deep breaths and creative alternatives to yelling. But I knew better. Early on, I learned that yelling simply doesn’t work, that it just makes things spiral out of control and it makes it hard for my boys to hear what I want them to learn. How can they clearly here me “say” “Hurry up, get your backpacks, your shoes, your jackets, don’t touch each other, go faster, you an do it yourself!” when it’s all a garbled, loud mix of intimidating orders that are making them cry?

6. Incredible moments can happen when you don’t yell.
One night I heard footsteps coming downstairs well after bedtime. Although infuriated that my “me-time” was interrupted, I remained calm and returned said child to bed. As I tucked him in he said “Mommy, will you love me if I go to heaven first, because if you go first, I will still love you. In fact, I will always love you.” Tears still come to my eyes just writing that. I can guarantee if I had yelled “GET BACK IN BED!” we never would have had that sweet, very important conversation.

7. Not yelling is challenging, but it can be done!
I am not going to say not yelling is “easy peasy,” but getting creative with alternatives certainly made it easier and more doable. And after yelling into the toilet, beating my chest like a gorilla, singing Lalala, Lalala it’s Elmo’s world, and using orange napkins at mealtime as a reminder of my promise, it certainly got a heck of a lot easier. Sure, I feel silly at times doing these things, but they keep me from losing it. So do my new favorite words: “at least.”  These two small words give me great perspective and remind me to chill out. I use them readily in any annoying but not yell worthy kid situation. “He just dropped an entire jug of milk on the floor…at least it wasn’t glass and at least he was trying to help!”

8. Often times, I am the problem, not my kids.
The break-up line, “It’s not you, it’s me” rings uncomfortably true when learning not to yell.  I quickly realized that oftentimes I wanted to yell because I had a fight with my husband, I was overwhelmed by my to-do list, I was tired or it was that time of the month, not because the kids were behaving “badly.” I also quickly realized that acknowledging my personal triggers by saying out loud: “Orange Rhino, you have wicked PMS and need chocolate, you aren’t mad at the kids, don’t yell” works really well to keep yells at bay.

9. Taking care of me helps me to not yell.
I was always great at taking care of others; I was not, however, always good at taking care of myself until now. Once I realized that personal triggers like feeling overweight, feeling disconnected from friends, and feeling exhausted set me up to yell, I started taking care of me. I started going to bed earlier, prioritizing exercise, trying to call one friend a day and most importantly, I started telling myself it’s okay to not be perfect. Taking care of me not only helps me not yell, but it also makes me happier, more relaxed, and more loving. Ah, the benefits of not yelling extend far beyond parenting! There is no doubt that I am in a better parenting AND personal place now that I don’t yell. Just to name a few unexpected benefits of not yelling: I do more random acts of kindness, I handle stressful situations more gracefully, and I communicate more lovingly with my husband.

10. Not yelling feels awesome.
Now that I have stopped yelling, not only do I feel happier and calmer, I also feel lighter. I go to bed guilt-free (except for the extra cookie I ate that day, oops) and wake-up more confident that I can parent with greater understanding of my kids, my needs, and how to be more loving and patient.  And I am pretty sure my kids feel happier and calmer too. I know everyone wants to read, “I stopped yelling and not only do I feel great, but also my kids are now calmer AND perfectly behaved.“ Well, they aren’t. They are still kids. But, yes tantrums are shorter and some are completely avoided. Now that I am calmer, I can think more rationally to resolve potential problems before meltdown mania.  But forget perfectly behaved kids for a second. My kids are most definitely more loving towards me, and now tell me quite often “I love you Orange Rhino mommy!” and that feels more than awesome, it feels phenomenal.

* To get started on your own journey to yell less and love more one moment at a time, read:
12 Steps to Stop Yelling At Your Kids or
Orange Rhino Alternatives to Yelling 

* * * * *
The book!“Yell Less, Love More: How The Orange Rhino Mom Stopped Yelling at Her Kids and How You Can Too” will be released September 2014 but is now available for pre-order here. Written as a 30 day guide, each day shares even more key lessons I learned that inspire me to not yell as well as honest, sometimes funny sometimes serious stories from my journey, simple steps to follow to start your own journey to yell less, and three alternatives to yelling to try out. 

308 thoughts on “10 Things I Learned When I Stopped Yelling At My Kids

  1. This was a really great post. I love plotting out what I’ve learned from similar experiences, and soon I’ll be writing out my own list of “What I learned through the Orange Rhino Challenge”. Thanks SO much for being so inspirational and for helping me to bring peace to our home!

      • that was so awesome to read, thankyou for such awesome reflection on yes what is seen as a hard thing to do, yet you can see the benefits of simply not doing and staying calmer…, and had tears rolling down my face recognising with all your points. I look forward to trying to embrace the wonderful world of no more screaming !!!

      • Thank you so much for coming up with this brilliant piece! Feel wretched yelling so much and expecting them to understand things on their own. At the end of the day the kids seem to be the only thing I feel control over and watching them make mistakes feels like a personal failure! I just finished reading 2 of your posts! Looking forward to learning a thing or two!

        • I’d like to know if this approach also works with kids with ADHD and ASD or Dyspraxia.
          My 11yo son has ADHD and ASD, and my 9yo son has Dyspraxia, and it looks like my 4yo son may have ASD and possibly ADHD as well.
          I don’t have a partner, and I don’t have any family support either. I do have 4 boys, the eldest being 18, he does help me with the other boys, but sometimes it feels like I’m giving him too much responsibility.

          • My now 17 yr old son was diagnosed with dyspraxia at 30 months, he is in college with a 3.3 GPA, and a theatre major. It can get better.

          • As one who insisted on raising our son without the aid of drugs, it can and must be done without yelling. Our son was born with ADHD and before he could walk he reminded of the toy robot that hit the wall and kept on walking even while he slept. I was blessed with a pediatrician who wanted us to succeed without drugs. The deal was, I’d get the sedative before giving any drug to my young child who could not voice the affects of the drugs when administered.

            The first change was our diet and the entire household gave up white sugar, chocolate, food dyes, additives such as BHA & BHT, and processed convenience foods in general and began to eat more natural foods. I was amazed at the change in all of us. We still got to eat sweets, just in a different form.

            Next regiment the entire household. Routine without deviation even on weekends is so important! This includes going to bed, getting up, meals & snacks, play, homework, chores, tv and computer time, etc.

            Next we became regimented and I learned to repeat the routine without yelling while reminding them that there is no change in the rules since yesterday. I learned to calmly but firmly state things daily such as: We have to wake up now. We never watch cartoons instead of getting ready for school. The clothes you are to put on are the ones you set out last night. Your shoes are where they should be in the place you left them last night and every night. It is time for breakfast and it is what we set out last night, period. Your lunch is in the frig where we put it after packing it. Not liking to take a shower or bath each night does not change the fact that you are dirty and need one and yes you must wash your hair and face first. I would end each routine with a reminder that I loved him and stayed on him because of that love.

            I’m sure I told him almost daily that I hated sounding like a drill sergeant especially when he had a tough morning keeping to the routine, but the day he graduated from Naval Academy he hugged me and said, “Mom, you only thought you sounded like a drill sergeant, but without your being that way I never would have made it through this.” He even had to explain why his superiors why he would be smiling when he was told by them that he didn’t do it right the first time! I think it got him out of trouble because he was remembering Mom!

            By the way, I never did take a sedative. I know that some children need to be medicated for ADHD and I do not suggest that anyone take their children off their meds. I am just thankful to God that we never had to do it.

          • Wow I wish that my mom was as nice as this mom. Since my mom grew up being yelled at she feels that implanting fear will make kids listen…she’ll never change :( Shes nice a lot of times but when she yells she YELLS and its horrible :’(

          • My son was diagnosed with ADHD, but my dad just laughed and said that if he has ADHD, I have had ADDDDDDHHHHHHHHHHD since I was born. To be fair, I’m far more distracted all the time than he is, yet I read at the age of 3, and I’m currently a nuclear power trained registered professional mechanical engineer with 19 year of Navy service, so I don’t buy the “woe is me” stories of ADHD. Just take the kid to museums and buy things like ZOOBooks, Ranger Rick, etc, that have interesting ways of presenting information, and they’ll pick it up. Also, insist that they help you prioritize their life in writing, then when they get distracted, remind them that they haven’t done the more important things on the list yet, so they can’t play until the higher priority items are complete. A few nights with little sleep or no dinner will work wonders when it’s solely because they couldn’t follow their own priority list.

      • I feel like you’re the exact reverse of my mom. I’ve been taught to not argue with anyone because they are always right, yelling can solve any problem and that grades are everything, even more important than having friends. It influenced me so much that I even solemnly swear I would never have any kids and turned me into a sulking, timid, and passive teenager. At least not all moms are the same…

      • hi I yell at my daughter im a single parent and when lifes going bad I cant help but yell at her when she is being bad or not listening I don’t want to yell or rasie my voice anymore what can I do to actually stop!!

    • I’ve gone through this as a mom. I used to yell a lot more at my son (now 4), but came to realize that it not only didn’t help the situation, but it made me more stressed and incited a stronger reaction from my son (not a good way to lead by example…he would then feel it’s okay to yell at someone who made him angry).

      Also to add to number 8: I think quite often I would get upset not necessarily because he was misbehaving, but because he was interrupting something I wanted to be doing when I should have been giving him attention.

      I still don’t have complete control of this response, but it’s significantly decreased and has helped my relationship with him. This is a good reminder to keep trying…thank you!

    • Thank you for sharing this. I have also felt like the worst mom ever after yelling at my kids. I do yell much less than I used to but I will now incorporate your techniques to stop yelling at all.
      Thanks!

  2. I needed to read this tonight. I yelled at one of mine for the first time since Jan 1 tonight. So, so upset with myself.

    • I’m sorry :( that’s the worst feeling. BUT the first time since January 1st? HOLY SMOKES! That is amazing! That is worth celebrating. We all have our less than proud moments…I have had a few lately. I say forgive yourself and celebrate what you have done (I know, easier said than done.) Thinking of you

      • I think there will always be times when you have a temporary lapse in judgement and yell before you realize what you are doing. I think it is important when this happens to calm down and then go to your kids and say something like this, “Little Johnny, I’m so sorry I yelled at you. I want to let you know why I yelled at you. You know that what you did was something that could hurt you and it scares mommy when you do that. I just don’t want you to get hurt. I still should not have screamed and I will try to do better next time [hug]. What you should know is that I still don’t agree with what you did and next time, even though I will try not to yell, there will be consequences.” (explain said consequences and stick to them.) “I love you.”

      • God bless you for being so honest & courageous for creating this challenge. I found this page today, coincidentally i had my own face to face with my big ugly beast only two weeks ago. The yelling the short fuse, it all krept up on me & i couldnt seem to shake it. I was praying for patience, wondering how to achieve parental perfection &bliss. My child would not adhere to my demands, imagine…. I have weekly visits with a family support worker & discuss how things are going, always one big elephant in the room. In hind sight-it was me & my rhino. All of a sudden one night after a short break i felt calmed & tamed, then my son did a few things i didnt want & blamo, zero to 90 in 10 seconds. Wow. thats when i realised that i am the problem. I have been working daily on being the non yelling, non scary mommy I desire to be. I identify completely with your top ten list of thing you’ve learned & I am right there learning them with you. It becomes so simple doesnt it. :) Just chill out, their only kids & we’re only humans. Never stop learning, giving, loving & making mistakes. :)

    • I don’t know how I came across this article, but I’m glad I did. As a 26 year old single male with no kids, it’s funny how this can apply in my life. Yelling has always been a part of my life. My family suffered so terribly from the conflicts yelling causes that we hardly see or speak to each other because we fear making someone hurt. I’ve personally learned that yelling doesn’t improve the situation, and I’ve been trying to change with great difficultly. It’s a long road, but when you encounter articles such as by Orange Rhino, you realize you’re not alone.

    • Wow. At least you feel remorse unlike my mother who has NEVER said sorry to me or my little sisters. We grew up fearing her because she would YELL. :( And im 13 so I can’t just move out. What do I do? I tried talking to her but all she did was yell at me to stop disrespecting her.

      • Hi Samantha, I was sad to read your comment as I have a 13 year old daughter too. Im soo sorry you are afraid of your mum shouting. There is a lesson in this to all of us. It would be wonderful if she could hear what you had to say. Try writing her a letter. Sometimes when we approach from a different angle it works. Be strong, this is something about her not you. I hope she sees that soon and things will be better. Sending you love and wishes. xx

      • Samantha,
        I once was in your shoes. It is a very difficult place to be in, and my heart goes out to you. All I can say is do your best to be kind and loving. Do your best to answer softly when yelled at. Do your best to act the way you wish others would act, and treat them as you wish to be treated. Have confidence in yourself that you are valued and of worth–regardless of how your mother is behaving. Her behavior is a reflection of her own pain–not about you. I remember how it felt to be yelled at, belittled, and beaten. But I also remember the day I decided I would never be like that to another person. It was a freeing decision. I would “practice” behaving the way I thought I would like to be treated with my siblings and parents. I would spend time in my room meditating on how I would treat my own children. I prayed a lot. At the time I just wanted my home and my mother to be better. She didn’t change much–but I did. I learned to love others. I learned to be patient. I learned you can forgive, change and have a better life. I have children and grandchildren of my own. I worked hard not to yell at them. Our home isn’t perfect, but its peaceful. Our family loves to laugh, and spend time with one another. I now have the home I could only dream of when I was 13. Don’t despair. Don’t give up. You have everything to look forward to. I promise.

      • Dear Samantha,
        Do you have a school psychologist? Instead of talking to her about your mom, which can lead to problems of your mother feeling like you volitated family privacy, ask about if they will teach you meditation techniques.

        • Thank you so much for this article. My husband is away for six weeks at a time working and I am alone with our 3 children. Ages 2, 3 and 10. My 3 and 10-year-old have ADHD and my two and three-year-old have speech delays. They’re quite a handful to say the least. My 10-year-old is the one I tend to yell because he is going through a period where he just plain lazy and does everything he can to define me. He goes from slumping around doing nothing he’s asked, to running around destroying the house and having the younger ones join him. My three-year-old I yell at because she’s putting herself in danger with how hyper she is and getting into things that she shouldn’t and hits my 2-yr old. I’m going to accept this challenge and try to stop yelling for their sake and mine. I have recently changed there diet to organic food, though its expensive, I think taking out the crap they put in foods that I can afford may help with their ADHD etc. I’m also trying to develop more concrete routines to try to provide the best environment I can, to keep the home peaceful. Thank you.

  3. Thank you for that! I am trying so hard to have the courage to detach myself from my children’s choices. I have done better since joining and my home is more the haven I have been working and praying for with your encouragement. It isn’t that I don’t know these things it is that you remind me as I am dodging bullets in the trenches and the deafening bombs are exploding overhead.
    I too am going to bed with drier eyes and a lighter heart.

        • Something I must read obviously as I lay here and read these posts tears are rolling down my face :( feeling like a very bad mother tonight

          • I too sit here with tears rolling down my face, feeling like the worst mommy in the world. I yelled, actually screamed, at my 5 year old tonight. He behaved terribly at dinner with friends, was rude to another parent and used a curse word. I was mortified. I screamed at him as soon as we walked into the house. I didn’t take into account that we had been swimming today from 10:45-4pm and that he was exhausted. I just lost it because I took his behavior personal. The only thing that did was make me feel like a terrible mom. After reading this, I feel better but need to do the Orange Rhino Challenge.

  4. Thank you for all of your posts. This post is so reassuring on why we as parents try our hardest not to yell at our kids. It doesn’t work. #6 is such a tear jerker moment. All of those times when you feel like they’re not doing what they’re supposed to, then you calmly ask what they need, the sweetest things come out. Thank you

    • Thanks for reading and yep, yelling doesn’t really work and yep when we don’t yell the sweetest things come out. Thanks for reminding me of that as I just heard one child wake another one. I asked why oh why? Well because mommy I missed him and wanted to give him a hug…Oh! Have a good day!

  5. This is wonderful! I have a son and am expecting a daughter in seven weeks. I get nervous about turning into the big bad yelling monster that my mother warned me about. This helps you remember why you shouldn’t do it. I have yelled at my son before and felt like scum after because I literally watched his little heart break and his little sweet spirit get crushed by me. I picked him up and he still wanted comfort from the monster that just hurt him. I’m thinking “what am i teaching him here? This can’t be healthy” so, I try several things to help and you gave me some great new tips! I’m sure I’ll need them once the new baby is here!

    • wow- this is exactly my situation except my number 2 arrived 11 weeks ago. I too have yelled at my darling number one only to see his spirit crushed and his heart break, but he then still asks for a cuddle and a shoulder to cry on- what a terrible parent I feel like. I have become conscious of my behaviour and actively trying to change, then I came across this blog and am jumping in with both feet. Thank you

  6. I’m just a newlywed so I don’t have kids or anything yet, but I remember seeing my mom crying once after she had yelled at someone and it is something I will never forget. It was hard seeing my mom that heartbroken and I realized that it doesn’t make her happy or satisfied when she yells at her kids (not that it was often, but still..). I was thinking that if it makes her that sad, and the kids that sad, there has got to be another way. I loved reading all your tips for keeping it going and i’m hoping to apply them in my own home someday! thanks for the post!

  7. 30 days! This is my one-month mark in not yelling! This is a great blog post for it because I’m trying to make sure that I don’t ever get casual about the Orange Rhino Challenge.
    All the points you made are a perfect reminder!
    What a sweet experience with your son when he got out of bed…

  8. Number 6 is lovely. My neighbours yell half the day and i vowed to never be like that. So far i’ve done 11 months.. though you cant really get upset at an 11 month old can you ;) too adorable! .. Time will tell when he gets to the cheeky ages :) but im hoping to have the determination and rewards that you have got!

    New follower on bloglovin – walkingtalkingpollypocket!

  9. I cried my way through this last night – after what I can only describe as a rough night for everyone (and I take responsibility for most if not all of the troubles) – I decided, as I laid in bed reading this, that I would take the challenge. I told my kids this morning and my son (who is four) said he would be a green rhino and not yell at us OR his sister (green is his favorite color :)). I WILL do this! I want to be the bestest mommy ever too :) THANK YOU!!!

    • THIS comment is what finally made me tear up with happy emotion. A green rhino!! That’s amazing! God bless you and yours, I hope the challenge goes well for you and your son. <3

      • Me too! My screen looks blurry from the tears in my eyes. This is such a wonderful article; such a terrific reminder to pay attention to who it is that your kids see every day. It is not okay to face only the outside world with a smile and a willingness to forgive. Those little people who are our children are the ones who need it most.

        • That being said; we are all human and we will react with negative emotion from time to time, including reacting in a way that makes us feel less than proud. However, it is my strong believe that awareness is key. So now, when I react in a counterproductive way, I notice it almost immediately and am usually able to adjust my reaction. On those days that almost anything feels like a trigger, I pay extra attention to my reactions AND I allow myself to be grumpy for a little while. I will say to the kids that I am feeling grumpy right now and they need to give me space for ten minutes. After those ten minutes, I’m usually much better able to navigate again. A dear friend of mine puts herself in time out from time to time. For those of you with school age kids, that may be worth a try!

  10. Someone posted a link to your blog on facebook so I checked it out. What a great challenge and good for you for totally changing your ways. How did you get started? I made the goal for myself for this year to stop yelling but I forget. I do good for a few days and then have a bad day. Did you post signs on your mirror? Put pepper on your own mouth? I need tips on how to stick with it! Thanks so much!

    • Denise, the tip that the Orange Rhino gave me that has helped me the most was to take 3 days to track my triggers. Every time I yelled (or even came close to it), write down what was going on at that time–including what I was doing before the incident (was I working on a project, etc.), and describe what the kids were doing (were they tired, what time of day was it (nap time? dinner time? bed time?). Once I had all my notes, I looked for patterns, and that would give me clues as to when I needed to be the most alert for my own yelling potential. THEN, she told us to figure out–if we yelled–how we could have handled the situation differently/better. Once I had all this down on paper…oh, plus one more thing: have my own “alternatives to yelling” list I could choose from…then I was all set and ready to tackle my life without yelling.

      And you’re right–putting up visual reminders everywhere also REALLY helps! I have an orange bracelet on that I’ve been wearing for a couple of weeks now, and I love noticing it now and then and feeling proud of myself for making progress.

      Good luck!

  11. I have a 3 year old that is highly active, and every night i go to bed with a heavy heart and a promise to be a better mother (and NOT yell) when i wake up. It is inspiring to read about other mothers being able to overcome my same problem. it gives me hope that i can do it too, especially since my little one deserves the best. I am looking forward to starting this challenge right away. Thank you!

  12. I read this not expecting so much positivity. I have a 2 1/2 yr old and a 3 month old. Ever since our 2nd one was born I find myself yelling, spanking and saying NO all time ( things i vowed to myself I would never do and never did till the 2nd). Im just not sure how to instill in my child “no we cannot throw utensils at the tv”, which by the way is not broke. I feel like a broken record. But …. no matter how much i do all of these things it keeps happening . So, my goal is week by week. Not to yell.

    Thanks for your post. ps. can you tell us how you chose to discipline instead?

    • Wow Ashley, you sound just like me! I have a 23 month old and a 3 month old and feel so overwhelmed. I too thought I would never spank and yell, but it is sooooo hard. But, knowing that I am not alone in this battle helps me. I hope it helps you too! Just take it day by day. And good luck!

    • As a preschool teacher, we always turn the message into a positive one. Instead of saying “NO” we tell the kids what they CAN do in a particular situation. So, instead of “No throwing your cars,” it would be “You may drive this toy car on the ground.” Sometimes we do follow up with “It is never ok to throw a toy car,” or whatever fits the situation, so they also get the message that their choice of behavior was not a good one. Good luck!

    • Hang in there! I felt like all I did was repeat “no throwing!” a million times a day until my son was 4. Now I only have to say it occasionally. If you can stick with appropriate discipline until they’re 4, you end up with really lovely 6 year olds!

    • I have an almost 3 year old and a 5 month old. I used to yell and spank my oldest but realized it was getting us nowhere. What I do now is when he gets in trouble I make him sit on the couch with me an I will calmly explain what he did and why it was bad. Unless I am really mad then I will walk away and calm down before I talk to him. At the end of our talk I tell him don’t you like having fun with mommy? He says yes an I say we can’t have fun if you aren’t listening. If he is throwing a fit I tell him we will talk when he calms down and walk away until he does. If this just started when you had your new baby he could be jealous, you are exhausted, or a mixture of the two. When I lay the baby down for a nap I make sure that my oldest has my undivided attention during that time an when the baby is awake I make a really big deal about him helping and what an awesome big brother he is. I hope this helps you and good luck! Remember to take time for yourself to even if you only get that time while they are sleeping like me.

  13. Omg I have 3 sons age 10~3 trying to potty train the 3 year old on top of finding a better job mind u single mother too boot family issues & just trying to do better as a person I yell all the time & always cause of my issues I’m fighting with their dad I miss their dad I wish I had more to offer them my job sucks not happy with my weight never have me time without feeling guilty about asking grandparents to babysit again. I’m taking this challenge for lent my sons older two wanted me to stop yelling at them I should have started then didn’t realize how much I do yell till then & don’t want to hurt my important people any more especially after all they already don’t have & hurt for.. Breaks my heart now. I can do better & I will this is so inspiring me knowing I’m not alone!!! Thank u for your post & PUSH to do this!!!

    • Hi! I am glad you found this post and the blog! It sounds like you have a lot going on! I wish I could come over and babysit or something. I find it inspiring that amidst everything on your plate you are pushing yourself to be better. Good for you! I hope you enjoy this page and know that no, you are SO not alone!

      • Your no yelling strategy is fantastic. You have captured the basic principles of scream free parenting as outlined by Hal Runkel, LMFT. His books and lecture tours on scream free living are dedicated to calming the world one relationship at a time. Check out his free daily e-mail tips too. They help me remember I’m in this for the long haul.

  14. So, I read hundreds of blogs and get overwhelmed at all the greatness and things I need to change. But, then I read yours and can 100% relate to everything you have said. I too am trying to have more patience and yell less, I haven’t gone a year yet, I am lucky if I go three days in a row, but you are my inspiration! I so have the same coping methods, when I read you scream in the toilet and sing the Elmo song I had to call my husband and tell him I am not alone.
    So, thank you, I am going to read this blog often to remind me how to be a better mom, and wife!

    • Thank you! I am glad that you like the blog and can relate…sometimes I feel so alone even when I share what I do!! And I totally get the feeling of being overwhelmed from other blogs and parenting books too for that matter. If there is anything specific you ever want me to approach on this site, let me know! Good luck!

  15. Thank you for such a wonderful thing to try, succeed at, to share, and to inspire other mom’s. I feel better knowing their are other mom’s who feel like I do. I will start tomorrow or should I say stop yelling tomorrow:) Thank you for sharing! You are true inspiration!

    • LOL, yes not try but stop! Great attitude! That said though, there will be hiccups and getting up and trying again is huge and awesome. Know that you are most definitely not alone on this journey! If you ever doubt that for a second, hop on over to the FB Page!

  16. I feel so lucky to have found you on pinterest. I am crying like crazy right now as I type this. My son just turned 9 and my daughter just turned 6. I yell at my son the most and hate the way I make him feel. I love my kids more than anything yet I yell constantly. I relate to almost all the comments here and desperately need to make a change. Please God give me the strength and God bless you for posting this, it helps to know we’re not alone.

    • I am happy you found this post and blog and yes, please know that you are NOT alone. Not even close. 30,000+ people have read this post which means there are at least 30,000 people in your boat :) I have cried like mad too over wanting to yell less. You can do this!!! One moment at a time…

  17. Hate yelling at my 2 year old. I hate being pushed to that level but no matter what I try with her she pushes me to it. I could remove temptation and she finds a way to get it again. Climbing etc. Or if I ask her to do something she just stares at me. She’s so hyper active. Grocery shopping is a nightmare. Grabbing a bite to eat with friends. HA impossible. My husband is deployed and I’m alone in a state with no friends. My child doesnt fall asleep until 12ish no matter how early she wakes up. So I am around her sun up and sun down. I’m tired alone and frustrated. And it doesnt help that I just quit smoking.

    I feel like I’m not a good mother at all. I’m not a natural mother and my parents know it and I know it.

    Its heart breaking. I wouldn’t even begin to know how to stop yelling at my daughter.

    • Thanks for reading – I am glad you found this post! I too have felt like I am not a good mother at all; that I am not a natural. And as you know, I have yelled too. Please know that in those two schools of thought, you are not alone. It must be so hard having your husband deployed – I can only imagine and with a child that doesn’t sleep much that is a very long day. I say begin slowly; one moment at a time. Take a moment for you, a moment for her, and then a moment for both of you by not yelling. I started by yelling away from my kiddos – yelled into cabinets, trash cans, fridge, etc. Then I trained myself to not yell. It is a process but you can do it. You quit smoking (congrats by the way!) so I know you can do this. Good luck and thinking of you!

    • Parenting can be so isolating. Is there a MOPS group (Mothers of Preschoolers) in your area? Check their website and you can search by zipcode. Some groups are especially for mothers with deployed spouses. Are there other mommy groups in your area? Church groups, if you are comfortable with that? Even storytime at the library helps you meet people. We relocated to a city I had never been in when my boys were both under the age of two. Finding other moms to hang with was essential. Praying you find some support.

    • Hi, I too have struggled with sleep issues, which when you’re on your own can be the most exhausting thing and make every other little thing blow out of proportion. I found help at http://www.thesleepstore.co.nz, heaps of really good articles on helping little ones settle at every age and stage. They also sell books, DVDs, bedding and a bunch of other sleep-related stuff. Hope this helps xx

  18. what an inspiring post ! I have this same problem I’ve got 2 kids 8 and 11 and I really feel awful after yelling to them (and it is something I do a lot :( ). I really wish I could have your power of will, I’ll try this orange rhino challenge and I hope I succeed.
    Thank you so much for sharing.

    • Thanks for your kind words and for reading. You CAN do this! I didn’t think I had will power either but turns out I did!!

  19. This is the best advice, I tell people interested in homeschooling to first see if they can go without yelling.

  20. To be completely honest, I started reading this post with cynical skepticism and even some slight antagonism. You see, I’m THE resident expert when it comes to disciplining my children ages 11 (boy), 6 (boy) and 3 (precious, perfect little princess girl). Nobody shall tell me anything about administering a good dose of “mom means business” yells, especially someone who is obviously a Liberal. PUH! (sorry for the ignorant forethought) With that delightful bit of shameful honesty being said – your words were truly inspiring and put a smile in my heart. And by the responses you have received, you should feel an overwhelming sense of benevolence and present yourself with a Medal of Honor for fostering hope in the teary eyes of mothers everywhere. I’m also a strong believer of approaching life as a beginner, even if you are THE expert. Insert foot into mouth.

    I think most of us can raise our hand and recall a moment from our childhood (or adulthood) when the shouting from an disregarded, overburdened, wilted mother brought us to face to face with angst. Fear was the driver on the road to obedience and Mom’s yelling was the fuel that filled the tank. Yet, as we turn into mothers, these chilling memories seem to be forgotten and we allow this “quick-fix” cycle to continue. It’s only when we lay awake at night, with a consoling glass of wine and lingering guilt of our most recent loss of control, that we realize the impact our yelling has made on the kids. Drifting off to overdue sleep, a jolt of clarity begs the question: If I have the power to produce crying from my pre-teen why don’t I try using that supremacy towards a more positive result? I think Monsters Inc. was on to something!

    You have issued an important reminder that parenting is a practice and can be improved but never perfected. Thank you for your words of wisdom and restored faith. – I will take your challenge!

    PS. I also like the subliminal orange to encourage the decision to tread quietly.

  21. I love this article. I was raised with a wonderful, hardworking, single mom, who yelled. I certainly don’t blame her, but I vowed not to yell at my kids. Now my kids are in college and I regret all the times I yelled. Even though we had a great family life, the yelling sucked and did not solve a thing. So, all you young parents out there, find a better way to deal with anger. Stop, think and then act. I wish I would have done it differently.

  22. I have 2 boys that are 7 & 8 and I so resemble # 2. I don’t yell when out in public so why do I think it is OK to yell at home. I am sick and tired of going to bed feeling guilty and vowing to start the next day with no yelling. Unfortunately before they are even on the bus for school I have yelled at least once because they aren’t listening or moving fast enough, according to me. Most days I feel like the worlds worst Mother and I feel like I must be crazy or bi-polar or something because apparently I can turn off the yelling when out but the minute I walk through the front door all heck breaks loose. In my brain I know that yelling does not work because on many occasions I have told my sister it’s not them I’m the one that starts yelling and then it just cycles out of control. I am so glad I found this site on pinterest because it makes me realize that I am not the only one going through this and maybe I’m not so crazy after all. I can and WILL get better. I am starting my challenge TODAY!!!

  23. I found this article interesting but was left frustrated because no alternative to getting what mom wants done is given. For example I have tried not yelling and all it gets me is a MESSY house and slobs for kids. They simply WILL NOT pick up after themselves. I must have made mistakes long ago to have such stubborn kids :(

    • Robin, I just started this challenge this week and so far things are going good. Have you thought about doing marble jars? I will explain them in case some are not aware of how they work ;) Pick some jars one for each of your children. I got mine at the dollar store as well as the marbles or decorative glass stones. If they do chores or nice helpful things like being nice to one another they get a marble or two or even five, how ever many you think the “deed” was worth added to their own jar. Now they can and do get them taken away as well. Before I started this we sat down and came up with a list of rewards given once their jar is full. Ours are things like an extra park day or more time there, an extra play date, a special day out, a new toy not costing more than ???? (whatever you decide) so basically simple things that the kids enjoy. Let them come up with the ideas as well you may be surprised with what they choose. I got this idea from my sons kindergarten teacher a few years ago. My daughters k teacher has a warm fuzzy jar with the little pom poms :) Its a nice visual reminder for the kids to stay on track and they love earning the marbles and hate when they loose them. Good luck with the challenge and remember you are not alone.

  24. Hi and thank you – I sit here crying as my husband has told me that if I don’t stop my behaviour that he will leave with the kids. After another rage session on the children one of my daughters got the brunt of it but worse thing was my 12 year old niece was over and saw it all unfold and now sees me as this monster and doesn’t want to come home.
    My husband has had enough of me turning our home into a fear for all and I think I have finally been caught out and need to change!!!!
    To see this post of yours and all the other mothers in need is reassuring and inspiring me that I can change my ways and look forward to a more peaceful and loving home. My children are wonderful and certainly deserve it. I always swore that I wouldn’t turn out like my mother but I have and it’s time to change! I’m starting this challenge NOW! THANK YOU FOR SAVING ME ;)

    • I came across your page tonight, it has given me massive hope for the future. I have two beautiful boys 3 & 2, however it upsets me that I shout & get stressed with them tonight was upsetting as at bathtime i screamed at them & made them both cry, what made it wors oldest boy said crying im. Good boy mummy. I have also grown up in an enviroment where my parents fight & shout & dont want this for my boys .I have realised from reading some posts that It happens when we have a planned activity, leaving house for school or meeting friends etc as boys won’t get dressed or listen. Have realised that this is my issue & need to plan & get more organised night before or just generally prepare. Thank you so much, as I’m starting today I’m determined I can do this for my boys& family x

      • Family outings and important events seem to be my biggest trigger as well. I am starting to learn to get myself up earlier and ready first rather than last like I used to. This gives me a slight sense of calm before I wake the kids and begin the don’t mess up your clothes or hair routine. Me being ready first also gives them less time to get messy. I too can be cool calm and collected in public now but only after my daughters step mother made me feel like a huge jerk. I volunteered to not attend a school party because I was having one of my bad days and she tells me yes I’d rather you not go because it is embarrassing for all of us to have to watch you yelling at the kids… In a way I hated her for that but at the same time I think I needed to hear that. I am able to keep my cool in public a whole lot more now and for the last two years I’ve been yelling less and less as I’m finding my own triggers. My kids are 10,6, and 1. Now if only I can get my husband on board with this we can have a peaceful home :)

  25. Wow!!! Truly inspiring! I’ve made it a week or two at times not yelling. Although I’m decent at restraining myself I certainly have bad days where I’m just a monster (at least in my eyes). I want to cry and I always think back to the days where I was easily able to not yell and how wonderful those moments/days were.
    This really helps give me drive to make the changes needed to stop it altogether.
    It’s so so so true that when I want to tell it always stems from something going on with me; tired, recent fight or upset with husband, overwhelmed, etc. etc. etc.
    I accept the challenge. Day one starts now.

  26. Your #6 made ME cry!!!! So, how did you get started on all this “no yelling” stuff?I yell a lot, I know I do. I tell myself ALL the time I am going to stop, then I yell some more. And you are right, it IS me, not them most of the time. So where do I start, what’s my first real step to not yelling at my 5 kids?? (ages 10, 6, 4 & twin 3 yr olds) Also going to add, one of the twins has Autism, and takes up most of my patience and time everyday, but I can’t yell at him, so everyone else feels the wrath when he breaks something else, or destroys something again or won’t quit biting the couch. Totally not fair I know, but I can’t seem to stop. You are an inspiration tho!
    ~Colleen
    co11een903@yahoo.com

  27. I think yelling or not yelling is not the point. Yelling is simply a physical act, and you can yell with fear, with joy, with anger, or just to yell. What matters is what’s in your heart. Keep kindness always in your heart and it doesn’t matter what your mouth does.

    • I yelled just now. I don’t yell often. What happened with the screams was bad as the little one really doesn’t deserve such a treatment, it was like a mom-bully. But I do hope my words aren’t hurtful to my sweetie. I recalled when my mom yelled at me, the words were like daggers to my heart, the words were so mean that it felt like I don’t worth a thing….I believe what you said here in this post was right. The words from the screams do matter.

  28. Great article. I have to say though, the OCCASIONAL well-timed yelling is sometimes a good way to get things done. I’m a pretty patient mum, but when I yell, boy, do they pick up the pace!

  29. I just came across your post and blog. Wow, I am so impressed. If I make it one day without yelling I am so happy with myself. And I even tried to give up yelling for lent. You make me want to try giving it up for a year and truly giving it up. Thanks for sharing your journey with this. I cannot wait to read more and get started myself.

  30. This was such a great post, so glad I read it! I am interested in learning more, so I am about to read the other suggested posts, and I really want to challenge myself also! I, too, am guilty of yelling at my 9 year old son way too much, and it causes problems with my husband also, and now my 9 month old daughter is starting to notice so I need to calm it down! A whole year wow! That’s setting your sights high, but Iguess if you’re going to do something, do it big right!? =)

  31. I’m a homeschool grandma of 6. Some days just start with the children yelling at each other and then I yell. I did not yell at my own children as much as I yell at the grandchildren, and my daughter says it’s because I am older and my patience is less. Ha. Not a good reason for yelling. Yes, the stress level can get to me, and the children are closer in age than my own children were, so the noise level is much higher. Your post have given me the courage to try to find alternative ways to let my frustration out without yelling at the children. Thanks.
    http://homeschoolinggrammy.blogspot.com

  32. I happened across your wonderful post from Pinterest just now, and boy was it timely. Yelled my head off just before putting the kids on the bus, and felt horrible. Gut wrenched. I hated when my mom yelled and I hate it even worse that I do it too. I want to print your list and put a copy in every room of my house lol! Thank you so much, I feel like I can make a change, it’s never too late!

  33. Thank you so much for this post! I have 4 boys as well (although one is still a baby, my other 3 are crazy enough to bring out the crazy in me ;) and I have felt that yelling is something that needs to stop. When I first read that you did it for a year (now longer!) I couldn’t believe it. But thank you for showing me it can be done and for sharing the beautiful benefits that come from not yelling. This challenge is something I’m goin to think very seriously about doing!

  34. This makes so much sense. I find that my propensity to yell has far more to do with my own emotional / mental state of fatigue than any actual behaviors of my children. My mom recently said that if she could have gotten away for a break sometimes, she would have yelled less.. I don’t remember her yelling all that often, but I do wish she would have taken more time for herself. My feelings about that help me to take time for myself without the guilt that usually descends whenever I so much as think about taking ME time.

  35. I found this post via Pinterest and right at the perfect time. I, too, am guilty of yelling and going to bed with a heavy heart so its nice to know I’m not the worst mother ever. I will be taking the Orange Rhino Challenge starting now!

  36. I keep trying, but everyone else keeps yelling! Even our 2 son year old YELLS!!! My husband argues (very loudly) with my 2 older boys like he’s a teen too, and my 5 yr old daughter yells to be heard. We’re you the only yeller? I keep saying “We need to all stop” but it never happens. :(

  37. Thank you. You have no idea how much I needed to hear that another mom felt just like me for yelling at their kids. Starting my no yelling challenge today (I bet my neighbors will be just as happy as the kids)!

  38. Wow – this post is an answer to a prayer. I haven’t had the chance to read your blog before, but I WILL be in the future. First stop – “How to Stop Yelling at your Kids”. I SO need that. And it’s really nice to know when your not the only one who struggles with this. I know my kids and myself could use less stress. Orange Rhino time!

  39. I’m now a Grandma 5 times over, and think this is a really good post…It’s positive, supportive, truthful, and very objective. Love it…keep up the good work with advising and tips.

  40. Someone on facebook shared this and I am so glad I found it! I have gotten caught up in yelling at my kids, feeling like that is the only way for them to listen. Being a teacher, I use so much of my patience during the day, I am giving my own children the short end of the stick. This is helping me realize there is no excuse. They are kids and they deserve more from me as their mom and example. I am starting now! :)

  41. Wow!!! What amazing insight – I love it and am TOTALLY going to do this! Thank you for sharing your ideas and thoughts!! Orange napkins to remind you..? LOVE IT!!!

  42. Brilliant challenge…. I have very big problems with my emotions, i am the type of person that can’t be under pressure, i have difficulty managing my anger, always yelling and shouting to my 12 and 8 yo daughters. I always praying before and after bed, please God let me be more patience especially with the children. Thank you for this article, I will do my best not to yell, I want to be happier and make my house in peace.

  43. Was hoping to see a post from a mom with teens. I have 2 boys, 15yrs. and 12yrs., and it has got alot harder not to yell, once they have realized you have no physical control of them anymore. I can’t just take their hand and lead them to bed or to “time out”, and those sweet little “positive” reinforcements are met with eye rolling. I would take a toddler over a teen anyday, the rules change, and my boys are most of the time, “well” behaved. Hoping to see some ideas how to keep my sanity till college.. :)

  44. I just read this as it was put up on her facebook page. I’m a yeller…4 kids ( 3 boys, 1 girl) military wife as my husband is stationed somewhere else for 2yrs and we live in TX. Anyways, I feel like I’m on my own and it’s very hard. I will be trying this because I cry everytime I yell at them. Thank you very much for posting this!

  45. WOW! #6. I’m on board. This will be my new challenge. I’m 7 months prego and not sure if I can do it with two other kids. Patience is on an all time low at the moment, but I’m wasting precious time yelling. Amazing post!

  46. I just happened across this tonight and I’m sure it was a sign from above. I got in bed and got on Pinterest to try and calm myself down from day #3 of yelling & fighting with my kids. I’m so stressed. I’m going to try this. Thank you so much for the post.

  47. WOW! You have opened my eyes so much! I have to admit I am a yeller and I hate that about myself. I am SO doing this, your list is inpirational, number six pretty much made me cry. These are such good ideas, thank you! Feel free to take a look at my blog as well, jessiejoathome.blogspot.com! :) Hopefully soon I can blog about how your challenge has changed my family’s lives as well!

  48. Oh thank you so so much for this. Not only for my kids but for my husband on those days when I feel like we can’t do a single thing right.

  49. Thank you so much for posting this….for sharing this whole blog. This is something that has been on my mind for years now but didn’t think I could control it. Thought it was just my human weakness I’d have to live with. But in this post, specifically, you’ve listed things I’ve already known, just not wanted to admit, that could change. And even more. Thank you for the inspiration. I read this on Friday and started today (Sunday) and so far, after Day 1, good!!! Thank you so much. I hope this is the beginning of many happier days. Also, because I am a christian, just wondering if you used meditation, prayer or any other forms of spiritual nature to help you out too.

      • I don’t know if anyone else has this problem but I have a 5yr old&9months pregnate & I’m actually bipolar,I do take meds for it but sometimes it seems like I just can’t control it even if I tell myself that I have to have more patience that day,I. Hate when I yell @ her then immediatly wants to hug me afterwards I do want to try this before my son comes along because I’m sure my yelling will just increse unfortunatly,I’m going to try an hour @ a time to me thisseems less challeging than a day @ time due to my bipolar,wish me luck

  50. I grew up in a yelling, nagging home. I know my mother loved us–but her own anger was so big it spilled out on us more often than not. I vowed to not repeat the cycle as it was so destructive. It is not easy to stop yelling. My hat is off to you Orange Rhino and all you other mommies. But I know it can be done. It took time and a lot of effort, but I did it. I prayed a lot. Sometimes I had to put myself in time out. Sometimes I would go for a walk (after dad was home so the kids weren’t alone). Sometimes I’d go to my room and cried. I prayed a lot. I worked on my own emotional stuff. I praised my kids. I played with my kids. I prayed a lot. I learned to listen to my kids. I taught them to be responsible for their own actions no matter what another person says or does. I prayed a lot. My children are mostly grown now, raising children of their own. They have seen the effects of a yelling parent on my siblings (lots of problems), and they have all expressed gratitude that we didn’t repeat the cycle in our home. My kids are happy, responsible, and mostly get along well with each other. None of us are perfect–but life is so much better with kindness, patience, and love. The best decision I ever made in raising my kids was to not be a yeller. Best of everything to all you moms.

  51. This was a great article, my only complaint is that your picture of the kids in the fridge is almost 1MB and takes approximately 46 seconds for me to load the page. I would suggest lowering the size of the image since you’re displaying it smaller, but the size is actually very large. This page would be a lot more responsive and I could have not yelled at my computer screen.

  52. First up, great post. And you know you’re a good mom when you realize you’re doing something that needs to change for the improvement of not just your kids but the family as a whole. I’ve read a few parenting blogs that have done the No Yelling Challenge and so I told my husband that for the month of April- we’re giving it a whirl and I’ll blog about it. Because I’m a crazy ass parent so it should be entertaining. :)

  53. i just stumbled on this post today – hello! coincidentally a month ago i decided to institute something similar to this, except between me and my husband. your points/lessons share similarities in the husband/wife relationship and i do recommend not yelling in any household or any kind of relationship. of course, old habits die hard but so far it’s been very productive :) good luck with the no yelling!

  54. This blog was great! All of my friends and coworkers think I am crazy because we do not yell in my household. My son is 3 and we decided befiore he was born that this would be a no yelling house. I mean, who likes to be yelled at? So far, so good!

  55. Thank you for this! I read it thinking, wow, she’s me! She’s totally me! All of it resonated, but especially #2… I have long thought to myself, why is it that I don’t yell or get snippy or frustrated or irritated or angry (as much anyway) when I’m with other adults? Why am I more gracious, more understanding, more KIND when we are out? Why do I speak to my children in ways I would never speak to another adult (at least not in normal day to day scenarios). Why is that? And you are absolutely right, they are THE MOST important audience. Here’s to my own beginning of the Orange Rhino Challenge. (I may post my progress on my blog at http://wheredreamscometoplay.com. And I may share your post if I may. Thanks!)

  56. THANK YOU!!!!!

    I ran across this on Pinterest. I am single and sometimes afraid of having kids because my mom was a yeller and I worry that will be one too. (She doesn’t know, but this is the reason that three adult children [two married] have produced her no grandchildren.) So you could add #11 here: Not yelling makes you more likely to get grandchildren.

    On #2, by the time I was 12 I had realized that my mom had self-control in public, but very little self-control at home. Everyone thought I had the nicest mom ever, when really she had quite the rage problem at home. Clearly she could control herself but chose not to, I thought. I decided she didn’t care about me. I think my sisters decided the same thing. None of us are close to her as adults. Our relationship isn’t terrible, we just don’t open up to her at all.

    • my biggest nightmare is not to be close to my children as they grow older. thnks for sharing your story. My family was also yellers and Im committed to changing.

  57. Thank you for this! I’ve done it and it feels horrible and I immediately cry and apologize it sucks…so thank you for this…also #6 are you serious?? if my little girl ever says that to me I’m gonna lose it =)

  58. This is an awesome post. My son is only 8 months old but sometimes I find myself raising my voice because I’m frustrated that he is screaming and screaming and screaming or I get mad and yell at my fiance because I’m stressed. This would be great to apply to him as well. I definitely need to take care of myself more. I think it would help improve my relationship with my fiance immensely.

  59. I could REALLY Relate to this. Having Four under Five there are days all I feel I do is yell. The playroom was always a source of tension so I boxed up toy sets and put them away. I told them if they wanted to play with them they would have to give something else up. I was also just telling my husband that since we had our first child I have “given up” many thinks that made ME happy and felt like I just don’t take care of myself because all I do is for others. Would like to see how you went about NOT yelling. Thanks for the post!

  60. Thank god….you have opened your heart and shared your empathy with others. I feel like there is hope and a light at the end of the tunnel. I want so much to stop the yelling and today was my first day. It felt good. I caught myself a few times and really tried hard to follow through with my no yelling. Im taking the Rhino Challenge…and Im already thankfull for your support and others. Its reasurring to know that im not the only one who faces this behaviour. Wish me luck!

  61. This is a brilliant post! As a parent of a child with autism I can tell you that yelling does NOT get you anywhere…and your tone of voice is everything.If you want your little angle to grow up to be loving and respectful, teach them how to treat you, and that is how they will treat others.My son is almost 11 and I have to stop adults from talking down to him like he is a 3 yr old,he has a 135 IQ people! Children deserve respect and we are responsible for teaching them how to give it to others.

  62. Hi I found this article through the wonders of Pinterest. You just inherited a new reader! I’m the mommy of three – 6 y.o. boy, 3 y.o. girl, 7 m.o. boy. I’m going to take the Orange Rhino Challenge on Easter. I figure it’s symbolic – He will rise I to a new life and so will we. (Plus I need a few days to get mentally prepared.) I’ll let you know how it goes.

  63. #9 is soooo hard when the kids are really little. But once I got thru that and have started putting me first (yes, I do. And my kids are much happier for it) our entire household is much more relaxed! This was awesome:)

  64. Wow did I ever find this blog at the right time. I am that perfect parent…in others eyes, just not my own children. I even run a daycare and am great at my job, but behind closed doors I yell at my kids. Yesterday morning my daughter wanted to sleep in and I was pissed that she would not get out of bed and instead of walking away or figuring out a way to get her out by being smart. I yelled. I cried in the shower and came out and apologized. :( I felt sick about it all day. And by the grace of god I found your post this morning. I am going to read all of it and start my own journey. I thank you from the bottom of my heart, and so do my kids. <3

  65. I definitely need to do this. I yelled at my girls yesterday, I know it was more because of an over whelming list of to-do’s than them actually misbehaving. My oldest daughter hasn’t said she hates me but she did say I was being mean and yelling at her. I felt awful, I dont want my kids to be afraid of me, I want them to love and trust me. My son is only 5 months old, if I can learn to stop the shouting now, maybe he will never have to hear me like that.

  66. So glad I ran across this! I seem to do nothing but yell at my 3 yr old. He never listens..blah blah blah……regardless I dont need to yell at him! I will start this tomorrow!!!
    And his favorite color is orange! So he won’t mind having some orange reminders around the house!
    Thank you!

  67. Not yelling, or in other words, the No Talking-No Emotion rules have been the heart of the 1-2-3 Magic program for the last 25 years. Too much chatter is neither benign nor neutral. It is positively destructive to both kids’ ability to cooperate as well as to their relationship to their moms and dads. Good idea and good work!

  68. So I had a rough day, in a usual cycle of coming home from work yelling at my kids. I was tired as usual picking up, cooking and doing all that is required of a mom. Then I sat on my couch and looked at my 3 girls and realIze, all they want is my attention and love. As I cried, I actually googled how to stop yelling at my children. This website came up, I believe God is speaking to me through all your posts. I don’t know if I can do this, but I am going to try. My families peace and unity is worth it.

  69. I needed to read this today more than anything, I really try not to yell at my beautiful 3 boys, but some days, oh some days….and it is not them, it is me….thank you, just thank you…..I am sobbing just thinking how much I needed to read this….I am up for the challenge…..I can do this….

  70. For a long time I was a little smug when telling my husband and adopted teenage niece not to yell at me since I didn’t yell at them (my dad yelled and like others on this page I vowed not to)… until one day she told me that I didn’t need to yell because my tone of voice hurt far more. Ouch. So for me this is a challenge to use a voice as sweet as what I want used on me.

  71. I would love to do this. We are a family of yellers. I have 7 kids – 17, 15, 12, 8, 6, 5 and 5. Did you sit them down and tell them what you were doing? My problem is that my younger ones are so conditioned to whine and cry until we yell and then they stop. I know we’ve created these behaviors, but figuring out how to stop them is almost a task I feel is impossible.

    • Hi, look up Nigel Latta – The Politically Incorrect Guide to Parenting. It may help get past the whining issues :)

  72. Wow! Talk about a good timing post! I always swore I would never spank or yell at my child, it would always be time out and nothing more.. Well, obviously that didn’t quite work out or I wouldn’t be sitting here typing this. My little girl is 4 and very VERY smart. I have yelled more and more over the last two years, and I hate it. After we get into a yelling match that ultimately leads to her distraught in her bedroom, I break down and my husband has to step in to calm us both down and reassure me that I’m not a terrible mother. (I know the triggers, but by the time I have realised it’s happening, it’s all going downhill with no sign of stopping).
    The 3 of us were supposed to be taking an over night trip to see my husband’s brother yesterday, but I ended up staying at home with our daughter because for the two days before that, she’d had so many tantrums and I had yelled and she had yelled, that we just couldn’t take her, we were so embarrassed by her behaviour, and our own! — One of my daughter’s triggers is her diet, you can tell a huge difference in her behaviour when she is on her usual healthy diet to when she has been eating too much junk. — I felt horrible, because not only had her punishment been the cancelled trip but I had yelled at her like a monster and she was crying in her room “No one loves me any more”. It absolutely broke my heart!
    I am so glad that one of the pages I like on Facebook shared this tonight. I am definitely going to try my best at not yelling for a whole year, and I think we might use the marble (or something else) jar that someone suggested. My little one thrives on visual reward programs.
    Thank you so much for this post, and this blog.. I am going to bed tonight feeling less like a horrible helpless mother and more like a mum on a mission!

  73. Great ideas! I have a huge problem with yelling at my kids and I feel awful afterwards. It becomes a yelling match at eachother and my little ones try to be even louder than me! Would I actually yell at adults this way? My husband? Absolutely not! Good point and excellent reminder that our kids are people too. The elevation of tension rises when we yell and make matters worse. A calm approach warrants a calm response and I MUST keep trying. A whole year seems forever so I’ll just try to lessen the screams. Thanks for the post.

  74. I read somewhere once to try and always behave like you are one camera. Pretend that there are hidden cameras around your home and people are watching (and judging) what you are doing! This really made me stop and think before screaming at my kids. I am more selective about when I yell at them. Unfortunately, my patience and tolerance seem to snap at certain….umm, times of the month. But not too often!

  75. Wow. Great timing! I have a friend that was constantly screaming at her kids and I vowed to NEVER be like that. It wasn’t until I realized that I only yell at my kids when no one is around that I knew I was worse than she is. I have two 5 year old twins and a 7 year old that are all home-schooled. My worst times of yelling were always during school when my son couldn’t tell me how to spell a 4-letter word that we had been spelling ALL year or when he didn’t know what 4+4 equaled, etc. The whole time I was screaming at him I was thinking in my head that surely it’s not going to make him smarter just because I yelled and I know it will make him hate school. But I couldn’t seem to stop. Of course, it didn’t ever help when the husband would come inside and say something like “I could hear you yelling all the way outside and it is embarrassing me in front of…………..” Since I couldn’t take out my frustration of a non-understanding husband on my husband, it would usually translate into more yelling at the kids. What a vicious cycle. With much prayer, I am going to take the challenge but like some of the other commenters above, I am gonna need lots of visual reminders :) I have also decided to enlist the help of my kids by having them hold me accountable when I start raising my voice. Wish me luck.

  76. Thank you for such a GREAT article. It really had me thinking and crying more then twice! You are so right about the ‘ no yelling ‘. It really is toxic for kids. Me, well I try not to yell, but its easier said then done! I’m gonna try really hard and take the challenge and hope for a happier healthier household.

  77. wow! I so needed this. I just had a screaming fit with my 2boys (ages 5&6) the other day. Our main issues were picking their noses and farting in public. Its so humiliating and embarassing. I normally dont scream too much anyway, but I just really had it and I gave it to them. But i felt sooo crappy for days. Thanks for this post. Its a very good reminder & very helpful tips. My favorite is no.7, but no.8 is very true for me. Thanks again.

  78. Thank you so much for this! My husband and I are trying very hard to make changes in our home and every time I take one step forward, I seem to take two steps back.

    I am thankful you wrote this mostly for two reasons:
    First of all, it is comforting to know I’m not alone in this struggle. I grew up in a home where there was yelling and I hated it and I told myself I would not raise my kids like that, but lo and behold, once they turned toddlers and started talking (and talking back), the yelling began. My two older boys are now 6 and 5 and have lived a majority of their lives bathed in yelling and anger, much to my chagrin. We now have 9 month old added to the mix and we feel like it is God’s way of opening our eyes to the bad choices we made in the past with the older two and give us an opportunity to make changes and make a happier, healthier home for all of us. Making this change has not been easy for myself or my husband because we are so set in our ways. But I know we CAN change!
    Secondly, thank you for this (these) posts for showing us that it CAN work to not yell and giving ideas and support on how to approach it. I will definitely be checking back and keeping in touch. Thanks again!

  79. Thank you for posting this! As a single mom doing it all completely alone with no help whatsoever not even child support. Some days get the better of me and I become what I call “mean mommy” and I feel like a failure. Your post has made me realize that were all human we all make mistakes as parents and it isn’t fair to myself to compare myself to parents that have a mother and father who are active in the child’s life. I have always looked at families with both active parents saw how their lives were and told myself that I have to just be both parents. That’s a nice thought but its impossible, being one parents is hard enough. Starting my Orange Rhino Challenge today and praying for a better tomorrow.

  80. I could not have read this at a better time! I homeschool my 4 children, we’ve recently moved across the country, & my husband is traveling quite a bit… needless to say, I’ve had some “Bad Mommy Moments.” After reading this, I’m getting back in track. It was inspiring, comforting, and it has made me so aware that by taking better care of myself, I’m actually taking better care of my whole family. Thank you from the bottom of my heart- my much lighter, happier heart.

  81. THANK YOU for putting all of this out there! I have just come across your blog about thirty minutes ago. I wish to God I had been told about your experiences this past December when I made my own commitment to stop yelling. I began my challenge on January 1, 2013. I ultimately labeled myself a failure by the end of that month.

    I know I am not a bad mommy, but I do know that I am done feeling guilty after each and every “bad” day attempting to discipline my children. I have a 4 yr old daughter, a 2 yr old son, and an 8 month old baby boy. Needless, to say (though so many people feel the need to do so, hah) “I have my hands full.” To those tactless folks I simply reply with a smile, “Why, thank you. Better full than empty in my opinion.” I love my children beyond the depth of my soul, as I’m sure most mothers do, and I would and will do whatever it takes to improve my relationship with myself, my husband, and them by committing to my own “Orange Rhino” challenge.

    Thank you again for your honesty, your rawness, and your dedication. You will be my “Buddha” throughout this process, I assure you. I hope you don’t mind me possibly flooding some of your blog posts with comments or questions, haha. Game on!!!

  82. Hi, saw this post on facebook and had to comment. I spent the first 5 years of my children’s lives yelling and the occasional spank. One day I spanked my son a little too hard (not a beating or anything) and felt awful, I spent the next 20 minutes in time out for me and cried. I realised then that I was the problem not them. They were not especially bad or trying and looking back I could take them anywhere without issues. My husband and I always used to read to them and ask about their day at bedtime. We now have two amazing (adult – in their 20′s) children who we can have the most amazing conversations with and who come to us when things are good and bad.
    I have also realised that I don’t stress so much about things and feel better as a person. Hang in there and don’t give up it’s worth it in the end.

  83. Thank you for sharing your experience, it’s very helpful! I have yelling issues and I KNOW I don’t want to loose it on my kids. They are so sweet, the sweetest couple of little children in the whole wide world, and every time I loose it I know that I am the problem, not them. I’m working on my short temper and remembering the fact they are my audience and they learn SO WELL.

  84. You’ve just made me a better mother in a few minutes of reading this. THANK YOU. And my children thank you. :) I’m a decent mom, but there are always ways of improving, and your insight and has given me more than one “ah ha” moment tonight. Truly, thank you.

  85. Great post. Enjoyed reading all the comments too. For me it’s not necessarily yelling that gets me down, it’s more about the response I have to certain questions or situations…sometimes I’m just on auto-pilot and most of the time I’m feel too busy doing chores – which are of course, more important than playing with the kids  However, what often helps me (similar to the imaginary hidden camera idea) is to imagine my kids in their 30s watching me interact with their younger selves (time travel if you will), sounds weird, but it keeps me in a better frame of mind 

  86. I read the Orange Rhino last night and decided that I would start the challenge myself. I have two kids soon to be 9 and 3 and there are days I find all I do is yell (mostly at my poor son)….. so last night I decided I wouldn’t yell. Instead of yelling that they were running all over the house playing hide and seek and open and closing doors…. I stopped and thought, it is pretty nice my son is playing with his little sister. I should go help her to play the game properly and then maybe she won’t smash her fingers in the door and it will be more fun for my son. You know, that is exactly what it was! Thanks for the inspiration.

  87. My husband and I have been trying to have a baby for over a year now so this isn’t about our children. However, I am a 5th grade teacher and I started to notice I was yelling at my students because I have been so stressed out. I have started using the Orange Rhino techniques and I am already amazed by the difference in my classroom! Thanks!

  88. I have never ever posted a comment on a blog but i felt compelled to do it now. I have a 14 month old daughter who is the most amazing human being that i have known. I have always come from the school of thought that “i got yelled at and spanked and i turned out good”, but your post made me realize that it wasn’t right. While my parents should write a handbook on parenting cause they were so fantastic, i realized there where times i got yelled at for completely stupid stuff. I got yelled at one time for picking grass and throwing it up in the air like confetti! Who gets yelled at for that! I wasn’t causing any problems i was just playing by myself but i got yelled at and sent inside. I wish i could say that I’ve never yelled at my daughter but i have. I’ve nicknamed myself bitter mom. There are times when yelling is just natural emotion when fear and/or danger is involved. I’m not going to say I’m never going to yell again. When she shimmys her way onto the couch and I’m across the room first instinct is to yell because i see the coffee table she is about to crack her skull on but touching my cds, there is no reason to yell at that. I don’t want to see again her beautiful face so broken hearted because of me yelling at her. Thank you so much for opening my eyes!

  89. So, define yell…did you not raise your voice either? I read this, and just tried for the evening. Didn’t yell, but did hear myself with an agitated, raised voice. I want to start tomorrow. I would love this to work. Every day with my four kids is a…struggle.

  90. Im so glad I found this. I beat myself up all the time for yelling. It mostly comes from being tired and being with my boy by myself most of the time. It is so hard sometimes and anger comes out. I started crying today when my son didn’t yell at his brother for knocking down his tower he just built. He said to him, “Max, that took me a long time to build. Please don’t do that again.” I said, “Jake, that was really nice not to yell and him, but you talked nicely to him instead.” He said, “Yeah, you should do that too, Mommy.” What an eye opener. A wake up call from my 4 year old. I will be starting this challenge tomorrow.

  91. I randomly stumbled across your blog through Pinterest. As a mother of boys and a full time teacher I find that I use all my patience up at work and unleash at home. This challenge is great, thank you for posting. I have set a new goal of not yelling.

  92. OMG You Are my Inspiration!!! The past few months I realize that asking nicely and calmly actually gave me more results rather than yelling at him(it might not be right away, but he usually ended up doing what I said). I have a 2 year old and he is definitely testing me with everything. Its hard when I have a long exhausting day at work and I come home and everything is just off…sometimes I would go to the bathroom for a second and burst into tears and breath and pray then I come out and instantly it feels so much better. I hate yelling at him and sometimes I feel like I am the worst mother =( I yelled at him less now than before only when its already in my last nerve .. I know that I can reach that goal of not yelling at all to my kids. I’ll get there!

  93. I love this! I am too young to be a mom yet, but this is so helpful for any “leadership” environment. Keep up the good work :)

  94. This is a great article. I read it two days ago and started then…I feel so much better. I feel like I’m on my way to becoming a better mommy! I am constantly thinking, “how are you going to feel if your kids treat their kids this way.” I try to see them yelling at their kids and it is pretty effective for me. I grew up in an abusive home..full of domestic violence, cursing, and yelling. My husband and I do NOT argue or yell in front of my kids but I do yell at them. In fact, I have completely lost it a couple of times and yes I have yelled in public too. I justified it by stating that I’d rather yell than spank. It’s just as bad imo. I am determined to undo the damage I have done…

  95. Respect due to you!
    I read this a couple of days ago and although I do try now and again to do a day without yelling, just to “reset” and calm things down, it hadn’t occurred to me to try it permanently! I lasted a day and a half, but in my defence my 3 yo was singing a Taylor Swift song on a 2-line loop at the top of his voice for 10 minutes, and I cracked!
    I will try again tomorrow!

  96. Wow! Awesome post, and you have no idea how badly I needed it TODAY! I yelled alot and feel aweful! I’m going to make myself read this every week! My sweet kids are so important to me and I never want to make them feel bad ! Thanks again:)

  97. Love this post. In reading this, and your point of “don’t yell at my kids in public.” This really helped me realize that, that is so true. I am going to try this. Because as you also mentioned this makes your heart ache, and almost puts guilt to yourself for yelling at your kids.
    Thank you for this post, and pushing me in the right direction. Sometimes the best advice comes from the most unlikely, and random places.

  98. Question… I assume moments of danger (like child about to run into traffic or touch hot stove) would be exempt from the “no yelling” rule? I just have a hard time thinking of a way that would arrest the child’s dangerous behavior as quickly as shouting their name or just “STOP!” Maybe that doesn’t really count as “yelling”? How would you define yelling?

    • I asked this same thing. The Orange Rhino told me that she defines yelling as something like “mean spirited shouting that is intended to hurt feelings or degrade the child” (my words, not hers). You can feel it, when the love is missing, that it’s not the right choice. Otherwise, “protection from danger” yelling is totally okay–on occasion. If you’re doing it all the time, the child will surely go deaf to that, too.

  99. Tears are rolling down my eyes reading this. I have felt so guilty because of the all the yelling that I have been doing with my kids. I don’t think I even starting yelling until my 3rd was born because the chaos really started then. I went into parenting with a vow that I would NEVER yell at my kids like my parents did. I remember being the child that never knew when mom’s attitude would change and how I always felt like a disappointment even at a young age. Recently I took a family trip to the zoo and was sitting on a bench while my youngest slept in her stroller. A grandmother came and sat next to me a stuck up a conversation about parenting. Her granddaughter has special needs and she was telling me how amazing her kids were with her. She turned to me and said that she yelled at her kids all the time when they were young and has now apologized to them in their adult lives. She went on to say it is her biggest regret in life. For me, this was God sitting next to me knowing that I needed to hear this. Then I stumbled upon this challenge. Thank you for the support, your bravery, and honesty. You have helped me, my husband, and my 3 wonderful kiddos.

  100. I’m not a parent (yet!) but I’m worried that I may end up yelling at my kids over little things.

    I’m a schoolteacher, and my voice tends to get gradually louder as I continue to talk. Or I’ll respond to people much more loudly than I intended to. Plus, my father responded to every little thing by yelling. Hurtful things, too–”A B ON YOUR REPORT CARD?! YOU AREN’T EVEN TRYING, ARE YOU?” “I TOLD YOU NOT TO TOUCH THAT! HOW STUPID ARE YOU?” I think I may have inherited his “hair trigger” because when I was living with my parents, I was often taken to task for my unpleasant tone.

    I guess my question is, where is the line between “talking to your kids in a really loud tone of voice” and “yelling at your kids?” Might they confuse an overly-loud voice with me screaming at them? I’ve wanted to have kids for most of my life, and I don’t want to hurt any of the little lives I end up bringing into the world.

  101. I’m not quite sure how I stumbled upon this page, but I’m glad I did. I’ve promised my little boy I would quit yelling if he would listen the first time he was asked to do something. Well that didn’t last long, not even a day later I yelled and he said “u promised u weren’t gonna yell”, “you broke your promise”! I felt horrible. Still do, he says the only memories he has of me is yelling, and he’s 6 years old. I have a 9month old little girl and just seems that I’ve yelled at him more in the last year than ever. He’s about to graduate from kindergarten, and I still can’t shake the fact that I yelled at him and was so mad that he didn’t eat his lunch I made for him on his first day of kindergarten. I was just so excited to make his lunch for his first day of school and he didn’t eat anything but a bite of his sandwich. I made him cry and I cried felt bad that he probably starved. But a lady I work with said he was probably just so excited about eating in a lunchroom for the first time and he was probably just looking at everything. Theres many more times I’ve yelled to many to type about. I’m not really the type to give spankings, just seems like yelling is easier but yet I think it hurts my son a lot more!

  102. This was just what I needed to hear! Thank you so much for writing this article. I have 4 young kids and it seems like the older they get, the louder and more frustrated I get. I am going to do your no yelling challenge in my own life and I hope I can achieve some of the same results. Thanks again for the inspiration to change my life.

  103. Not many posts from stay at home dad’s on here. Just finished yelling at my 2 1/2 yo twins. Boy and girl. They found it fun to number 2 on the floor and start rubbing it all over the walls and windows, and themselves. Haven’t had to deal with this yet, and then BAM! I was yelling.

    I’ve had them at home since they were born. I do pretty well, but I, too, feel terrible after yelling. I pretty much act the same in public as in the house. Yelling may occur, but it’s at a minimum, as I try to be consistent and treat them the same everywhere. I try to imagine an “audience” with me at all times. And I was right! You said our kids are our audiences. Very well stated. I googled “how not to yell at your kids” in hopes of finding a different way to react so they don’t look at me with terror when I do. My dad was a yeller and my sister didn’t take it well growing up. I fared better, but I’m afraid my dad is coming out in me. It’s best for my kids, and everyone around me, if I stop the cycle.

    Can you give me some advice on these “emotional moments” that I can apply, specifically. I believe in discipline of some kind, and I want my kids to know that I mean business. Should I say certain frases? All situations differ, as do kids, but is there a go to technique? I’ve watched Super Nanny, for what it’s worth, and take some of her time out advise and talking to the kids down at their level. (Knelling down.)

    Please help. I don’t just want the “yell” to build up for a month then explode out.

    Thanks.

  104. Thanks for the article. It challenged me to do the same. And it has been more than a week since I stopped yelling. I was able to teach her the inside/outside voice concept and she even calls us out adults when we get too loud in the house. LOL. Thank you for this blog. I made a blog, a shorter version, of my own experience, but I included your blog as a back link to make sure I give you credit! Thanks again!

  105. Number 8 is so true. Often it is not the situation, but our reaction that makes it worse. My daughter used to call me and scream and yell at me (I thought At me) about situations and problems. My reaction was to yell back. then I finally realized that the reason she was yelling was because she was frustrated, and scared, and did not know how to solve her problem or situation. When I change the way I reacted to her, it was much easier to do with her and to help her solve her problem. So in reality it isn’t always the other people but it is our reaction that causes an additional problem.

  106. Wow!! I thought I was the only one like this!!! The last couple months I have been working on my yelling & I have dramatically lowered the amount that I yell, & it does feel great!! I had noticed that my son had become just like me, quick to anger & yell. I would even raise my voice for normal things after having to repeat them a couple times as I was tired of repeating the daily tasks Everyday!! But it wasn’t worth the stress on either of us!! He had even told me a couple times he wished someone else was his mom!! That Killed me!! I had even started to think, maybe I should give him up for adoption so he could be & live a happier better life that I obviously can’t give him. But the unwillingness to give up is so strong in me that I was like NO, he is mine & I love him unconditionally & I WILL make it better!! I knew/know it’s going to take some time & lots of patients (which I had lots of years ago) to change not only myself, but his mentality & ways as well. & I wanted to get started right away, cause it would be easier for him to change while he’s younger rather than when he’s older. Little by little things have been getting better!! Thank You God!! There is still some voice raising here & there but getting better & better as time goes by. & I too realized when I would get pushed beyond yelling, that when I would close my eyes to take deep breathes & would not answer him when he would say ‘Mom’ (no matter if he yelled it or after a few times of trying to talk to me & his tone would get calmer each time he said ‘Mom’) he would start to calm down & would usually start to do what he needed to. & I would tell him we shouldn’t & wouldn’t be yelling if he would just do what he needed to. I also got to realizing a few weeks ago that I would use the word lazy at him a lot!! As well as “you’re wasting time; you’re wasting my time; etc” a lot. & I got to thinking about it, I was probably starting to make him believe he was really lazy, thus the saying, ” when you here something so much you start to believe it”. I also got to thinking about how he might be taking my “waste of time” comments repeatedly everyday. So that next day after we got home I sat down next to him & deeply apologized to him!! & explained to him that HE is NEVER a waste of my time!! he is my time & I choose to make him my time cause I love him soooooo much!! & that he will Never be a waste of my time!! & I gave him an example of the time frames it takes him to do his homework & about how long it would take him or does take him when he just gets it done & the time we would both have in the evening to play, relax & watch tv together, read, or do whatever we want with that extra hour & a half or so each night.

    So as I read your blog above, it was almost like you were describing Me!! & I totally connect, feel & understand where you have been, what you have gone through & where you’re at now. I’m not exactly to the point you are, but I’m not far behind!! & it does feel sooo Good to not be yelling!!

    & for any mothers going through the same thing, I’m sure you’ve already connected with her words above as I did. But I just want to say, it really is worth the extra effort you have to put into it initially. & the quicker you start to change your ways the quicker things will get better!! Not perfect (as we are all humans & there is NO such thing as perfect), but it will get better ten fold!!!

  107. WOW – had no idea you were doing this. I STOPPED yelling about 10 weeks ago (with one slip up). I has been SO HARD and I have been disheartened in that my kids have not even seemed to notice and there has not really been a change in the climate of my house. BUT I will continue and I especially LOVE the TAKING CARE OF ME helps part. That is where I do not do well and why sometimes the “not yelling” is taking a toll on me.

    Thanks for the insight as I now feel a renewed motivation to continue and make it work.

  108. I was that mother that always yelled – I had three sons in 4 years and was always exhausted. Then one day, I not only yelled, but I slapped my 4 year old son in the face. I still have not forgiven myself. I started to change that day (it took time). He is 24 now and claims he does not remember that day. My three sons age 24, 25 and 27 love me and remember many good times together. And I will never forget what I did.

  109. I wonder if you or one of your readers could assist me…I grew up with a yeller and then I married one…not understanding the depth of my own abuse and then marrying one…When I finally figured it out it was too late…my daughter is a yeller…I have tried many times to discourage her yelling at the kids…her anger is visible…yet, she refuses to acknowledge her anger much less come to terms with it. How can I try and get her to understand the damage she is doing to her sons…my precious grandsons?

    • I don’t know how to help, but I am the daughter of a major, major yeller. Be there for your grandkids, if nothing else. Encourage your daughter to seek help and guide her to this blog. I wish someone would have intervened when I was little, really.

  110. Today was not a good day for me and my 5 year old. I guess I should say, it wasn’t a good day for mommy. This brought up so many emotions and I’m still bawling. I go to bed every.single.night feeling like the worse mother ever. This is the best idea yet. Seeing how much it has helped you, tomorrow I am waking up a new person. Thank you. Here’s to NO YELLING.

  111. Thank you so much for this. I saw this on a friend’s facebook page and immediately clicked on it. Last night I yelled at my precious 5 month old baby because he was crying and I couldn’t get him to sleep and he wouldn’t eat. I was exhausted and screamed – “FINE! You don’t want the boob? Then STARVE!!” When I calmed down and just rocked him, he immediately fell asleep. At that moment I realize he didn’t want his mom yelling; he wanted her loving on him. It broke my heart then and now (I am crying typing this). I am a first time mom and I have been surprised at how frustrated I get. I now see why. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I look forward to taking the challenge and being the mom I want to be.

  112. I have a 2 yr old and I teach 2-3 yr olds. I saw this as a link on FB and I was drawn to it because I feel like I yell at my students all day. Today was particularly stressful and I had a headache so when I came home and my daughter kept making loud noises when I asked her to stop I yelled at her and she started crying. So I feel like a bad teacher because the only way my kids listen is if I yell and I’m a bad mom because I yell when my daugter isn’t doing anything wrong but I’m too selfish. I feel stressed all the time and I really think its from yelling all day. I feel like I’ve tried all the creative ways I know fo this age group (I’m used to teaching ele) but I’ve got to do more research or get more creative because this can’t continue. Thank you for showing me that there’s hope

  113. Wow, wow, wow. So glad I read your post. I Really been trying to work on my reactions lately. By lately, I mean a couple of years but really seriously this past month. I have three boys but it feels like six. your post was just what I needed to read. Pinning it and continuing to read your other posts on this subject. Thanks for being honest!

  114. Amen.

    Empower your children to kindly remind you that you don’t want to be a yelling household. We empowered my (at the time) 5 year old to do this and it worked like a charm.

    I blog a lot about mindful parenting ( http://imadealiyah.wordpress.com) , as it’s helped me tremendously over the last decade. I’m still a work-in-progress, and so are my kids, so it also requires I offer myself a lot of compassion when my parenting is less than mindful.

  115. i came upon your blog from Hands Free Mama and I am so glad she recommended it. I needed this. I am excited. Today is day #1.

  116. I feel like this may be written JUST for me, expect for the 140 other comments and the 15 people who have liked the shared link from my FB page in under 10 minutes ;)
    This is totally where I am at, this was just what I needed to hear today and the line… I also quickly realized that acknowledging my personal triggers by saying out loud: “Orange Rhino, you have wicked PMS and need chocolate, you aren’t mad at the kids, don’t yell” works really well to keep yells at bay… made me laugh for at least 4 minutes! I am totally using this!

    Thank you so much for this post and for taking the challenge. My husband and I are starting today. Great work mom and great blog!

  117. just yelled at my daughter…read your article…now crying…thanks for making me want not to yell. More power…Cheers! …to motherhood and to kids and to much love.

  118. wow,reading ur blog i felt like its me.I have 2 kids ,8yrs and 3yrs.Love them a lot but cannot controll my anger and yell at them. I see so many things which i do in ur post.I will start today try being calm.And reallly really felt very emotional.Hope will controll my yelling and be a good mom:).Really want to be one.
    Need ur tips
    Thanks a ton

  119. I too have stopped yelling, and remarkably more things actually get done. I never was a ‘yeller’ until my 2nd one came along. She tests, and pushes the boundaries (e.g throws her shoes out of the car window when we are driving down the highway. sigh) But for the past few days, with my husband away on business trips, and me playing the ‘solo mother’ act (even if it isn’t really a long time doing/juggling life, kids, dog, job alone) I realized, that when I spoke calmly, and breathed, just took a different approach to wanting the kids to get ‘out of the bath on time’, or ‘tidy up their rooms’ and ‘brush their teeth’.. I managed too, to do this sans yelling, or at least saying it with exasperation. And funnily enough, things are running somewhat smoothly in my usually hectic household today. Great post. Thank you for your honesty. And thank you for sharing.

  120. I have ALWAYS tried to follow these guidelines. (Not to say that I don’t believe in discipline, believe me, I BELIEVE IN DISCIPLINE). I try EVERYDAY to think about how my actions/reactions effect not only my children, but my student’s in class. There are days that I pray I am making the right decisions or saying the right things to always have a positive impact. I was moved beyond words when I received a letter from a student I had 4 years ago…he stated how much he loved me and my class. That I was his favorite teacher because I never got mad and I never yelled. I was always there when he needed me to help. Talk about a tear jerker! Thank you, GOD, for giving me patience and guidance!

  121. WooooW!! This really spoke to me as a mom. I am 28 years old and I have a 2 1/2 year old little boy who is full of life and love but at the same time one who has had so many medical challenges in life since birth. See I was brought up in a house with everyone yelling and the only way for me to be heard was to be the loudest person and then they would hear me speak. I didn’t want to be that person and I still don’t but I never realized how much I yelled until I had my son. I find myself spanking, yelling, timeout, saying no but the problem is why cant I get him to understand me and then I saw the problem was me. How can he know what to do if there is so much change going on. My husband and I agree that we were not on the same page and are working on that now but see I am so lucky that my husband is not one to yell at all. (NEVER) So I am having help me to do this challenge.

    I started day one TODAY and let me say my son is testing more then ever but I am praying to the Lord to help me and I know that through him and with my family help I can do this. I am on a mission to better me and my family. I already feel more in control knowing what I am going to do and how I am going to do it and there is no yelling at all today!! Hoping to make it through this FLAW of mine and overcome it. Thanks again for this!!!

  122. I’m so glad to read this post and so glad that I found your site. I am sooooo very much looking forward to your 30 project set to start in the next couple of days. I am also someone that can easily lose it at times and I can’t wait to get support and tools to be the person I want to be and a person I would be glad to have my children’s behavior modeled after. Thank you, thank you!

  123. Really inspiring article! I can relate to so much of it – and other readers comments. I turned into a yeller shortly after my second child was born and every time I do it I feel miserable. My own parents were yellers and hitters and I vowed I would never do the same. I know that distractions, daily pressures and tiredness are triggers. I want to be able to enjoy parenting more and stopping yelling would be a good start. My little girl (4 yr) asked me today if I was happy and I couldn’t really answer. That made me feel worse. Tomorrow I’m going to be a better Mummy and take the no yell challenge! :-)

  124. My husband had a major blowup and he did alot of yelling this past weekend…the kids were gone and I texted my daughter to stay at her friends house overnight…He was leaving the town the next morning and by them staying at her friends’ house, he wouldn’t get to see them before he left… I think that triggered someone in him to control his temper and the yelling…He actually sent me the article and I think it’s going to help us both! Thank you!

  125. I needed to read this TONIGHT. I found it on FB shared by someone else. I had tears. You were writing about ME. The former “yelling you” is me right now. I’m still tearful thinking of past incidents and how my children are also scared of my reaction to their unimportant mishaps. When I wake up tomorrow, it’s done. No more yelling. EVER.
    Thank you for your honesty, candidness and heart. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  126. WOW…….and thank you……so honest and familiar….this really hit home. I could not pick a better day to start….my little one just woke up on the wrong side of the bed! Thanks again!!

  127. I just found your blog from Pinterest~so inspiring!! I have three boys and a girl~and I yell alot :)
    I am too nice and my boys know I am a big pushover~which ends up in them not listening and me yelling like a crazy lunetic~I am going to take the “no yelling challenge” and pray for the best! I want to be a more fun, supportive mom!
    *Thanks for blogging on this topic~Love it!

  128. wow, I feel so guilty right now. and I’m signing up for the challenge. I want my kids to remember me as “mom” and not the yelling monster :(

  129. Thanks for a great insight into why telling can harm and what you learnt. I went searching this evening for ways to stop yelling so much at my three year old. Lately I have been stressed about a lot going on and he wasn’t listening and I got upset and yelling for him to stop what he was doing. He cried and said I don’t like it when you yell at me. I felt so bad and we went and cuddled and talked and we said sorry to one another. I really and going to try harder as I see its upsetting him do much. Thanks again!

  130. Wow……I yelled at my two kids just this evening. I even shush them when they want to get their point out and i felt my throat is in pain, because I am so angry….and now, after reading this, I feel so guilty and, i feel so terrible….I have to learn how to be like you. I really have to. My kids love me so much, I am the only one they have and i know they need me. Because of me always angry, i can see now why they also always angry…because they see me. They watch me…this is very sad. I have to do something. Thank you for your post. I appreciate it.

  131. I came across your post on Pinterest!
    Very inspiring!
    I was never a shouty person before becoming a mum – I was very quiet you’d have been able to count on one hand the number of times I’d raised my voice as an adult. I’m sorry to say I shout at my almost 4 and 2 year old a lot! I’ve always blamed it on tiredness and I always have tried talking, polietly asking and reasoning before I get to shouting. My kids take no notice of me at all when I politely ask them to stop climbing the furniture and explain they will hurt themselves or when they are biting and kicking each other! I think I need to work on having a more authoritive tone before I can stop the shouting! I would very much like to not shout!

  132. Being a school age child care instructor of 30 children, it’s nearly impossible for me to not shout. If I’m not loud enough, even in a quiet(er) room, not everyone will hear me. Due to me having to be loud, I tend to be loud at home with my 2 year old, but I have high expectations for her, and she meets them, shouting isn’t a constant thing, and my daughter is constantly being praised for being so well behaved by anyone and everyone. My point I guess is, I just hope everyone here realizes that even if a parent is shouting, it doesn’t make them a bad parent.

  133. Thank you so much for this post and doing this challenge! I just came across your page on Pinterest…it was exactly what I needed to hear and has given me inspiration. I will be printing this out to read again for that daily reminder! Keep up the good work, mama! :)

  134. OMG! The photo of the kids in the fridge, I love it!!!!! It reminds me of my now 29 year old son. I’m not sure if he still does that or not!

  135. For some reason I always forget how connected we all are with our emotions. I single myself out in my own little cave (my mind) You don’t know how many nights I went to bed and thought to myself, am I doing the right thing? Am I too hard on my peanut? Your article brings me joy and peace by reminding me that I am not alone in acting this way. You article has inspired me to put my foot down and make a chang in my life. I totally agree with you about how deep inside most of the times I yell at my peanut there was something bothering me with nothing to do with her in the first place. And …. it’s not fair. She is just a kid and I should be setting her an example. The way I treat her is how she is going to treat others when she grows up.

  136. I found this post this afternoon and it really hit home. Especially the part about its not them it’s me. It has helped me to realize that all the stress I am feeling and all the unhappiness in my own life is being taken out on my poor children. And nothing is more important than being a safe place for my children. They deserve it and they need it. Thank you for expressing things so honestly.

  137. I’m sure this is addressed somewhere, but what do you do to try to keep your children from harm? I have a two year old that minds well for the most part until it comes to keeping him away from a hot oven or grill, being too close to my parent’s pool, etc. He will totally ignore when I tell him to “watch your step you’re too close..” or whatever. I try to be patient at first but when he places his toes on the edge of the pool or whatever other defiant act he does to test my boundaries I end up yelling at him. I’m sure you know exactly what I mean..I’m rambling over here.. thanks! :)

  138. This reading has been a gift this morning!… I’m single mom of 3 and more often than I would want I yell at them and every single time I feel SO MISERABLE afterwards. I’ve told myself several time no more yelling from now on but I guess not with enought determination to actually do it definetly…Reading this article has reflected so well the situations I face with my kiddos, and how I cant keep yeling at them that I’m happy to announce that from now on I start the stop yelling chanllege!!!…Thanks so much for sharing your experience!…I’ll let you know how the progress go…Love

    Luisa

  139. Hi there… This blog is amazing. I’m the 27 year old daughter of a MAJOR yeller… no shrieker, as I usually put it. The anger that came from my mom towards my younger sister and I our entire childhoods is almost unbelievable. We both escaped it only when leaving for college. Do you have any advice or previous posts about how to deal with that now or how to maintain a relationship with a mother who still does this from time to time (hence my desire to basically never, ever be around her to this day)? This is a wonderful blog, and I will probably be reading it more someday when I have little ones. :) Thanks for your honesty. xo – Emily (freebirdpaperie.com)

  140. It’s a really good article – and being someone who has a freakish amount of patience, people always ask me why I have such awesome, well behaved kids. As a young parent, my husband and I tried lots of things – none of which worked, until we decided that each child is different and required different ways of dealing with their acting out. We have always been a very verbal family – and talk about everything together. As they got older, the conversations would get longer ( sometimes, more lectures than talking ) but the fact is that we talked. Every parent has a melt down every now and then – no one’s perfect, but I honestly can’t remember the last time I raised my voice to any of them. I’ve always been pretty mellow and softer spoken anyhow so it’s not really news to anyone who knows me. I think that, combined with the fact that my husband and I never fight – not to say we don’t have a disagreement every now and then, but we’ve never had a reason to be cross with each other. The children pick up on that, and so combined – I guess I’d have to say our approach paid off and we have a great relationship with our children.

  141. This was amazing to read. My daughter is now 2 and…..well she’s 2. Enough said I feel. And as our first child my husband and I are trying to figure out what style fits us as well as our daughter best when it comes to disipline and teaching right from wrong, sharing ect. I hate yelling and so does she. She is very vocal and has a big vocabulary and anytime she catches me yell its “no no please owie” and that is heart breaking enough to compleatly stop me in my tracks. The helpful hints and reminders you have will be a huge help.

  142. This is a great article! I’m not due for a few months but I grew up with a yeller and I’m hoping it’s not in my genes.

    I also live in a rural area with a lot of Mennonites (like Amish), I have a close relationship with one in particular and I’m amazed that their community NEVER yells at their children. It creates such a respect, it’s amazing to watch. They are so well behaved in public, everyone talks about it. And they are usually young mothers with like, 10 ten kids! But then there’s the lack of over stimulation: no tv, no gadgets, no traveling in cars; lots of outside time, lots of responsibilities … They create distractions when the kids are being crazy but never yell for non essential reasons.

    That brings up another point, you need your kid to listen to you when they are in danger, yelling is appropriate in that situation. If your child equates your urgency yelling “GET OUT OF THE ROAD” in the same way as “STOP TOUCHING YOUR SISTER” you think they’ll pay attention?

  143. Wow
    Thank you. Such real advice. I have just yelled at my oldest son – 8 – because he was stealing my ‘me time’ when, ha ha, he should have been happily off to bed … and yelling is a daily occurence in this house. yes daily. so many of the points you make are very real to me. thank you. I am going to try. no yelling for a year. i dont believe I can do it. i need to read the tips on how to achieve it…. take a deep breath.

  144. it would be nice if they stopped yelling at me. I stopped yelling back a long time ago when they forbade complaints from me.

  145. Tonight I ran away from home and sat in my car at the beach and sobbed. I felt like the worse mum in the world. I wondered if my kids would be better off without me. I was mad at them for being selfish and inconsiderate and I yelled and my 5 year old yelled louder and I was horrified he could yell at his parents like that. But of course he could, I taught him that, oh the guilt. I googles and found your article. Thank you, I think the challenge sou ds very hard but I am off now to read your 12 steps. I hope God can grant me the strength and courage to do this. Thank you again.

  146. Great article, and great advise. I grew up in a LOUD Italian family, and I can tell you from that experience that the only thing yelling serves is to frighten and demean. I vowed to raise my daughter differently, and I’m reaping the benefits.

    Kimberly
    http://www.SpeakerKimberlyCarnevale.com

  147. I do not usually post on blogs but this article pulled at my heart strings. I am a mom of 2 beautiful children and am truly blessed. Son 8, daughter 4, I have realised after reading this article that I am a MONSTER mom, always yelling. Yelling at him picking on his sister. Always yelling because she is squealing like a piggy etc etc. I love my kids but I have realised that I need to stop yelling. My husband has also threatened to leave me with no kids and no husband and I don’t want that to happen. So I justed called the book shop and I am starting the challenge today. I say God bless your honesty really thought I was evil incarnate. Thanks God bless all.

  148. Found this piece on Pinterest and I’m so glad that I did. #8 resonated with me so much. When I yell at my children, it’s usually because I’m frustrated with something else. Those unresolved issues can make for some serious yelling matches with the kiddies. Something to definitely work on. Thanks for the inspiration :)

  149. Ummmm….WOW! This article was written for me! I can’t count how many nights I have gone to bed crying wondering why my children love me because I sure didn’t love myself at the moment. I plan on starting TODAY! It will be a challenge but well worth it! Thanks for sharing so moms like us will know we are not alone! : )

  150. I feel like there’s a difference between yelling at a kid and raising your voice. Do you see a distinction? I am patient, but when I ask them to do something more than three times, I often raise the volume a little on the request.

  151. I love your new favorite words: “At least…” I just discovered over this past year that I often find myself saying this to other people or just aloud to myself.

    I saw a girl post on Instagram today that “Life doesn’t get better by chance. It gets better by change, and you control that.” Everyone should do some self-reflection from time to time, and I know a lot of people that should follow those words of wisdom. It’s incredible what you can do if you set your mind/heart to it.

  152. I flipped out today and screamed when my two year old throw his truck at the ceiling fan and broke a light bulb (I had been patiently telling him for about a week not to throw things at the fan). After feeling so frustrated and guilty all day, this is just what I needed to hear. Great perspective from an ex-yeller. Wish me luck!

  153. I have four boys. Yes…. four. I’m sure you can imagine how my days go. I have been trying to figure out how i messed my kids up so badly. Why do they tell me they don’t love me? Why do they scream back at me? Why do they this and that? About a month ago I figured it was the yelling. Today I found your blog post and you’ve helped me make the final leap to stop yelling. Thank you for helping me become a better momma.

  154. I grew up in a family of yellers & when I left home & got married I had the conversation with my husband about how I did not want to live in a home like that. Now 18 years later and with a 2 year old & another on the way, I appreciate that neither of us are like that. Not to say that I NEVER loose my temper, but this is a good reminder for me. Also, for parents trying to figure out what they can do to discipline without yelling, I think this is an important thing to remember. Be sure to set up boundaries. If you make a threat to take away a toy or a privlage because they are not listening, it is important to act on those threats quickly and consistently every time (so be careful what you threaten- you have to make sure it’s something your actually going to follow through). You don’t even have to yell. They will know you are serious when you start doing everything that you say you are going to do, every time. This also works as they get older and are testing their boundaries even more. Good luck to everyone and thank you so much for writing this article!

  155. I’ve recently made the choice to stop yelling. I’m so tired of being the “Mean Mom”. I’ve had several breakdowns emotionally because of it and I told my husband that I am not the Mom that I ever imagined I’d be. I don’t know who this person is, but she needs to go away!
    Yesterday, my daughter was so so so tired and really pushed me to my limit. I yelled at the top of my lungs inside my Mom’s house. That embarrassed me. That was not the way I should’ve handled things. I cried all the way home. This was my major breakthrough and Aha! moment. I’m committed to making my children’s lives and my life better and with much less stress. Thank you for creating this page and this challenge.

  156. I really don’t want to yell. I was totally out of my mind like I was someone else, of course it was me. That was a few hours ago, my sweetie is now sleeping and having a nightmare of mom yelling. How could someone ever yell at someone she loves so dearly, with all her heart and soul. It was totally outrageous, insane, intolerable, totally indescribable. This is a fragile heart, counting on you, with all the trust and all and here you are behaving like that. It’s not like she has done anything so wrong to deserve that moment. You have no right to be a bully (I mean me as I am writing in response to myself). Yes we can say all that we are only human, but I am her mom. Lord, I pray that You will guide me and help me with this Orange Rhino Challenge. Amen.

  157. To simply state, reading this just made a huge impact on my life. I feel everything you just said but never acknowedge that as the truth. I am accepting this challange to see what wonderful things reacting without yelling will do for my family! Thanks so much!!!!!!

  158. I had no idea how much I needed to hear this myself! I have a 3 year old boy and a 10 month old girl (who gets into everything). I catch myself morphing into a monster mommy sometimes & then think to myself “what’s wrong with me?” Your post was very inspirational & makes me feel so motivated to stop with all the yelling!! I am going to start the “Orange Rhino” method today!!! Thanks for posting!!!!

  159. We just moved into a new house, so this is the PERFECT time to start this. What a challenge, I may have to paint a whole room orange to remember to keep my cool, but I think it would be paint well spent! :) Thanks! V

  160. You guys are so awesome. I promise myself each morn that i wont scream at my one and only son..and to think some of you have 4 children and you are raising them so beautifully all by yourself !! Gosh, i am a bad mom by any standards. Im not being harsh on myself..,its the truth, i know. Im always so wrapped in my sorrows…i fail to see life from my child’s perspectives. I have taken up a similar challenge…and i had almost given up hope on this project…and its like i was destined to read this article today itself. My hope has been renewed. Thank you so much. Everyone.

  161. I really needed to read all this today. Thank you. I am sat here crying feeling like the worst Mum in the world. I am a Yeller and hate it. My son is 4 and I can feel this already making us more distant.

    I love him with all my heart and really want to be a calmer better Mummy and really think this challenge would help.

    It’s good to know you are not on your own but much more important is that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

    He is human like me, he is a child, he is my Child and I love him. He is fast asleep now but I feel I want to tell him Mummy promises not to yell anymore and yeah maybe he will listen.

    Thank you again I really feel there is a light now.

  162. It’s good to know I’m not alone. I’m a yeller too and I hate it. Every day, I feel guilty about it. I yell at my 3 years old daughter who seems to know so well since she’s born how to pull my triggers. At my 1 year old son… not so much. He’s a different kind. Anyway, I’m welling to take the challenge as well and convince it will do us all some good. Thanks about sharing this with us.

  163. Thank you fellow MOM! You brought tears to my eyes and a smile at a the same time. I have felt like such a irrational stressed out mom for a little while and You just gave me HOPE. Thank you so much for helping and sharing this wonderful Rhino experience. Namaste.

  164. I am so fed up with yelling at my kids! I have 4 just like you and well I think God helped me find this blog today!!! Thank you so much! I seriously felt like you were writing about me. I will most definitely be doing the NO YELLING challenge. Thanks again!

  165. After a frustrating weekend, last night I sat down and wrote a letter to my children. I know they cannot read it now, but I can read it to them. I wrote it not just for them, but for me as well. It was a “promise” letter. I don’t remember everything I wrote, but this is what I do remember:
    I promise – that from this day on (August 18, 2013), that I will NOT yell at you. I promise that I will: – Take Mommy time-outs to cool off – Remember that you are small and still growing and that you need nurturing and patience – That I will show you the respect that I am trying to teach you to show others. I do not know when I started yelling, but I know it will stop now. I don’t know why I started yelling, but it doesn’t matter, because it ends today. I dreamed about you, prayed for you, wanted you both so very badly and this is how I treat an answered prayer?! I am not the mother I ever thought I would be, and I am ashamed of the mother I turned out to be. So from this day on, I promise to be the loving, caring, kind, nurturing Mommy my precious children deserve!

    I know my letter was longer than this, but you get the idea. I have made the No Yelling pledge before and failed miserably. But I am committed and will stick to it. I am so tired of being the angry, tired, “mean” Mom. My little girl actually asked me the other day why I was so mean sometimes. It made me think. That should never come out of a child’s mouth, especially mine. I started off the morning on a positive note, not yelling at the kids like I normally would have when trying to get out the door on time. Nor did I yell in the car like I normally would have at the questioning of my 4 1/2 year old on how to make her 3 year old brother to stop singing. So far, it’s been a great day! Maybe writing the letter last night somehow cleansed my soul and allowed me to release some of those pent up feelings. Whatever it was, I feel better and promise I WILL do this.

  166. Parents lose site of the fact that kids are people to and need to be acknowledged with kindness and respect just as much as any adult would be.

  167. I think what you did was great.
    I hope that my mom will realise it too- yelling and ordering around doesn’t help, it only makes a child less open towards their parent.

  168. Thank you very much for your blog. I want you to know that you have helped my family tremendously. I was crying when I first read this because I identified with almost everything you did and at times felt like I didn’t even deserve my beautiful child because I screamed at him so much. You are so right. I have the most important audience in front of me, learning my bad behavior. I hope it is not too late. I don’t want my 2 year old making the same mistake as me, following the bad path of screams and verbal abuse that I had gone through as a child. Please pray for me, I want to be a better mom. Thanks again for your honesty in sharing your story.

  169. Day 6 . This challenge is a gift as my first child has reached 13 and I know communication is very important for teenagers. Ive been wanting sooo much to stop shouting and this is such a wonderful way for me. Its all about dealing with my own triggers. Shouting is not an option any more, its very distructive for me and my family. This biggest challenge for me is learing to react in successful ways that are calm and positive and to even keep my mouth zipped at the very least. Good luck to everyone else …

  170. Thank you so very much for what you have shared and posted. I laughed and cried reading it. You have inspired me to no longer tolerate my shouting, I want a different relationship and example for my children. Thank you again

  171. Orange You Glad?
    I am! I wanted to give you an update on my first 100 days of doing the Orange Rhino Challenge. Every time I see my Orange reminders I say to myself, “Orange you glad you didn’t yell at your kids?” Here are the top 10 reasons why I am so very glad I don’t yell at my kids anymore.
    1. My children fight less. This is weird because I most often yelled at them because they were fighting. Now I wonder if my yelling was at the root of it. In kid logic it makes sense I guess. If you yell at your kid then they in turn yell at their siblings so everyone gets yelled at the same. Fair is fair right?
    2. They obey faster. Another thing that is backwards. I used to yell at them because they didn’t obey. I still have to ask a couple times to get them to do something sometimes, but they jump to it much sooner than before, and they do it happily!!!!!! It’s like magic.
    3. I feel better about myself. This alone would be worth it!!! However it also helps me be a better mom than I was before. Suddenly I am not too worn out to play or tickle or laugh or sing with them. Suddenly it is not as hard to get up in the morning and have enough time to be silly with them before school. Yelling must take up a lot of time and energy. Now I have way more of both. I also sleep better because I don’t cry myself to sleep, feeling like a rotten mother. Priceless.
    4. Situations get dealt with before they get out of hand. I need to do this so the problem can be resolved before I want to yell. It is far easier to deal with something before all heck breaks loose. My children are also slower to explode. They like to be heard and validated. This leads to more teaching moments. Teaching moments are the sweet rewards of parenting. Yelling destroys these moments.
    5. You know that face your kids make when you yell at them. The one where their eyes are all big and sad or angry looking and they look resentful and crushed all at the same time, and you can see their self-esteem shrinking down to nothing. Yeah I haven’t seen that face in so long I can barely remember it. Or at least it doesn’t haunt me anymore.
    6. We laugh more, everyone is happier, me especially. I have more joy in motherhood. An overall sense of peace and light has permeated our home. I can understand for the first time how our home can be like heaven on earth. There’s no yelling in heaven.
    7. You know the mom you have always wanted to be. The one in the pictures with smiling children and happy families doing fun stuff together. Well, not yelling has gotten me much closer to that ideal than anything else I have tried to do. The super clean, perfectly decorated house and matching clothes and perfectly groomed children part of those pictures is not really possible for me. It is the love and joy part that I want. Now we have had more of those moments than ever before.
    8. I heard a speech once about looking for drops of awesome. How we need to focus on the drops of awesome in our lives. Well if you stop yelling at your kids, than you might need to get a bigger bucket to hold all the awesome :0)
    9. Kids repeat what they hear. Many times before I would hear my sweet child say something I have said in the same tone I must have said it and the result is horrifying. Well that doesn’t happen anymore either. Now I hear things like “I love you mom you are the Best Mom Ever!!!” Last week Wes said to me “Hey mom, forget about all those things I said about you before, you are the greatest mom in the whole earth!!!!!”
    10. I am no longer afraid. I’m not afraid I’m ruining my kids. I’m not afraid they are not going to turn out right. I’m not afraid that I am going to wake up one day and realize that I missed my chance. I am not afraid that I am a total failure. Instead I am filled with hope. Our future looks bright and I know that it will all work out right. Love conquers all and all that. It is all rainbows and unicorns from here on out folks. Real.

    Risa

  172. Thank you so much for posting your story and tips. There’s been so many nights that i have cried myself to sleep thinking and feeling like the worst mother ever. I too have prayed for patience, and i feel like it hasn’t worked. I know its not always them, sometimes its me, and that’s when i feel even more horrible. But just knowing i’m not the only mom who feels like this i feel a little more “normal”. I want to be the bestest mommy ever too and now thanks to your tips i.can try

  173. I think these are very universal lessons. There could be any number of blogs with similar titles. “Things I learn by not yelling at my co-workers” “Things I learn by not yelling at other people in the cafe” “Things I learn by not yelling at my partner” “Things I learn by not yelling at folks on the sidewalk”

  174. I’d like to simply say Thank You, thank you for sharing your story. Today I feel is my worst day so far. Long story short hubby works in the next town since Dec 2012, an hour away and doesn’t come home during the week, unless there’s work on the weekend. So I feel like a single parent to DD’s 7 and 5 and DS 14months. This afternoon was my moment where I thought what am I doing, what is wrong with me??????? I came onto the internet looking for help and came across your post, you have inspired me to try to be a better mum. Not setting a date, but simply take it one day at a time. Have already had a few incidents this afternoon where I didn’t yell :-) Thank you.

  175. Wow. Am I glad I read this. I’m the worst at yelling and you describe me here as well (how you used to be). Thank you for sharing. This gives me a great idea for the next year +. :)

  176. I had my own epiphany years ago. I was struggling as a single mom of four, and thought yelling was the only way they heard me. One night, I heard me. It was a crushing moment. “I would not scream like this at my worst enemy!” So I said, in my heart, “I do not yell at my kids any more.” I had the same changes you did. Young mothers, whether single or married, will find hope in this post. It can be done. It is SO worth it. Thank you.

  177. From the point you stopped yelling, to the point they started listening, was how long? I have tried… seriously tried. I don’t even have to yell to be told I hate you. I take privileges away, send to time out, all without yelling and I am hammered with negative commentary. At any rate, I keep reminding myself that every child is different, and that includes with discipline.

  178. Wow, Great list! My husband and I are both yellers, him more than me. He thinks if he is loud they will hear and/or listen to him( they don’t). I on the other hand yell when stressed or tired and the boys are not listening. I actually discuss yelling and the effects of it with him often, because it doesn’t work. Love the list, he willl be reading it later when he gets home. I believe this will help us, thanks again.

  179. i’m doing it! you have inspired me. i feel so bad at night. because i yell. because I want the best for my kids, and here i am giving them the worst!

    thanks!
    i’m totally doing it.

  180. Great blog! I usually don’t have the patience to read an entire blog, but this one was well worth the read. I watch my 12 month old son during the day while my wife works and sometimes I struggle to keep calm with him. But I definitely have noticed that when I get upset, it only makes things worse and when I remain calm, the difficult times pass more quickly and easily and with fewer or no tears.

  181. Thank you so much for sharing. I am a stay home mom to an 18 month old. I struggle daily with not yelling at my baby. He doesnt really talk yet so he express what he wants or whats wrong, so the constant whining and fit pitching can be very stressful. Im going to.try my hardest to apply this in my life. Thanks for the inspiration.

  182. Thank you for sharing this. I have a problem with Yelling.. and I don’t like it.. What are something besides taking care of yourself, walking away 1st and then returning, – have you done to control your anger? Blessings.. Judith

  183. I wish I had read this blogg 12 1/2yrs ago when I first started to yell. I have 3 children 8 12 & 15 & they all shout as well I can be quite aggressive with their tone which I guess they have learnt from me. My eldest lacks confidence around children her own age & I so mean with her words to her 8yr old sister. I feel this is all my doing I work nights & am often tired which is an obvious trigger. I am much better than I used to be but I do still have regular outbursts. I am going to follow this & set my self a target of 1 week to start with to prove I can do it then I will hopefully be able to continue for years to come. Is it too late for my daughter have I ruined her life for ever, she never cuddles or even has any physical contact with me, the last time was when she was about 9. If I tell her I love her at the end of a text or put a kiss she just says she doesn’t love me. My other 2 children are much more loving. This is not the way I wanted mother hood to be, my children are my world. I have a husband so it’s not like I have to deal with things on my own although he is a bit useless. I’m at work now so shall spend the night reading all the stories ready for my big day tomorrow.

  184. Thank you – today was the day that I realised that yelling is NOT working for our family either. The guilt and regret after yelling is just awful and as you say, doesn’t actually achieve anything. Tonight I decided to see what advice was out there to avoid the yelling spiral of doom, and I found you – just perfect, thank you. I take on your challenge with a full and happy heart…bring it on! x

  185. Really great article… I’m inspired. Definitely keeping this in my back pocket for when I have kids. But I will say I did a LOT of babysitting in my time… and I don’t like to yell either. I hated being yelled at as a kid… and I hate doing it. So I always explain things to them, and think of things from their point of view…. instead of my own. They really do hear you when you say things nicely…

  186. As a high school teacher, I have a policy of never yelling, never telling the entire class to shut up, etc. I try to model polite ADULT behavior. I have been doing this for 22 of my 23 years teaching. My own children, 17 & 14 years old, realize I do this at home. They are comfortable telling me things, and just this week my daughter asked me if I would be okay if she lived at home and went to college. I told her absolutely. Then asked her why was she happy with her parents but so many of her friends weren’t her reply was they don’t listen. I attribute this to not yelling. We have 3 rules….1) respect everyone, 2) never lie—-this includes lies by omitting things, and 3) any safety issue I have the right to get upset. My kids ALSO know if it is something important they can ask me to think before I react. This way I get a little notice there is an issue about to be shared, but I also get to see the courage it takes for my kids to display the adult brhavior of coming clean.

    This may not work for all but it is great for my home.

  187. My wife and I are expecting our first very soon. Very excited!

    We often share blogs and articles that we find interesting. She sent this one to me recently and it was a great read. I think everything you wrote is applicable to moms and dads. Most importantly, if both parents are on the same page, I think you’re much more likely to be successful. It’s watching your wife (or husband) and supporting them by being consistent. Understanding when they’re struggling and picking up the slack when needed. Personally, my wife knows my cues – if I’m upset, annoyed, tired, etc. and she’s really good at giving me a chance to take a moment to gather myself. I think being on the same page and having the same goals gives each partner a chance to regroup, take a deep breath and come back to the situation with a positive attitude – knowing the other person is doing their best to offer that opportunity.

    Easier said then done from a guy that doesn’t have a baby yet, right? I’m sure both my wife and I will have our struggles and not every day will be easy – but I like going into a situation with a sense of our ideals so should we make mistakes, we’re able to admit them and look back and understand why and where we went wrong.

  188. I wanted to THANK YOU for this great post. It is just what I needed to relate to, inorder to nudge me…. I’ll be the first to say it. I am quick to yell, sort of a hot mess at times (too often). I envy my friends that I know well enough to know they are not “yellers.” Maybe its less envy and more amazement!! Are they perfect parents…No, never thought that, none of us are. But they have this strength that I greatly desire. And I truly believe there is a way to Love greatly and Discipline greatly (run a tight ship, as I call it) without constant yelling. I see so much difference between my older boys (now 8and9) at age 3 and 4 AND and our youngest boy that is currently 3. (there has been a shift in my behavior now that I have 2 older kids and 2 younger kids). When the first two were young my life at the time had much less going on. I see lately a direct correlation between my yelling and my 3 year olds behavior.

    So hears to toning it down and letting my Love shine…((totally a God moment, thankful for His random but oh so perfect timing!!))

  189. My sons a year old today and so far I have not yelled at him once. I would like to challenge myself to never start. Thank-you so much for this article. It must have been difficult to admit fault, but without admitting and sharing you wouldn’t have helped so many on this parenting journey. Thanks!

  190. I stopped yelling at my kids a year ago….and I’ve learned all these wonderful things that you posted, but I never put it into words. It feels SO good to be trusted by my kids…even if they’re not behaving the greatest, it feels good because I KNOW they’re not scared, I KNOW they know they’re safe. But it has made them a bit more sensitive to when I sound like I’m snapping at them, whether because I’m in a hurry or I need them to hurry or whatever. I never mean it the way they take it, but it’s heartbreaking that they think I could yell or be angry with them. I wish I’d never been a yeller…but I’m so glad I have learned what I’ve learned.

    Thank you for posting this. It’s a very important lesson for all parents to learn, moms, dads, grandparents…ALL.

  191. this is so inspiring and u gave some good tips on how to handle your situations! i was just in tears for yelling at my three toddlers 1,3,4 and was searching for ways to keep my self together For them and myself! im going to be using this as my guide to staying calm and use the no yelling technique! thanks sooo much for sharing your story

  192. My mom yelled a lot! I told myself to not be like that but I notice that I yell just like she did to me. I know yelling does not work and when I yell it doesnt even phase my son (we are going through the terrible twos) I really hate yelling. He pays attention when you talk quitely to him and I know that I am number 8. I feel gulity for having a me moment! But when I take the time for me I am a much better mom. This just makes me realize I need to change. Thank you for posting this

  193. Oh my gosh I cried when I read this. So many truths, facts about myself and why I am yelling at my almost 3 yr old grandson that I have custody of because his Mommy is an addict. I cry so often, wondering what I did wrong, and when I see him sleeping, I know he is really an angel. But boy does that devil come out daily, he yells back at me, “I’m going to get chips”. I tell him “No you’re not” and he says, “Oh yes I mam”. yes I mam. And he will yell at the top of his lungs. I am at wits end and I don’t have it in me to hurt anyone but I also feel like a complete failure. I am happy to know there are others who feel the same and that there are other kids doing this too, not just my sunshine. I really thought I ‘d spoiled him too much.

  194. Thank you so much for this, I look into my kids faces everytime I yell and know that I’m doing wrong and that they deserve so much better than what I am offering them. These tips are extremely helpful I am at my wits end and I want my kids to remember a nice mommy and not a mean frustrated mommy. So thank you.

  195. What a great read. Having one of those days where I felt I just yelled all day at my 3 yr old, and am currently having the gut wrenching, heart breaking, tear jerking moment where I want to wake him up and cuddle him and say sorry. I think I will be taking all of your advice. Thankyou! :-D and I love the “at least…” It’s so true!

  196. You’ve inspired me. I am a “yeller” – everyday. Not even out of anger usually – but it seems to make me feel that a sense of urgency about things is being relayed in a way that wouldn’t be if delivered in my normal voice. It’s almost (or is) an involuntary action anymore. I know this because this morning is day 1 for me. I have been up with my amazing 4 yr old daughter for about 1 hour and have been overly aware of every single word and tone that has come out of my mouth. I know that at least 10 times I would have in some way raised my voice if I had not been paying attention.
    Good news- this has been one of the most pleasant hours in our mornings for a long time. One hour down – a lifetime to go.

    • I also am so much more aware of everytime I would’ve raised my voice! I haven’t stopped completely but am so much calmer and spend more time communicating! Even my husband says how much nicer the house is without this foghorn around lol.

  197. What a beautiful article and so very true. Growing up my parents yelled at me almost daily. I find it that I implement the same practices with my own children and I HATE it. When I yell at them I feel guilt every time. My husband hates it and says that yelling doesn’t help the situation and I know he is right. I am just having a hard time undoing what my parents planted in me.

  198. I have been through a recent seperation from my psycho abusive husband and my mean inlaws. I had to leave my house and everything in it and fly back to my home country with my two year old, and now I have to start from zero.
    I noticed my child is being extra naughty especially when he sees me upset, he starts getting more upset and fussy, then we start a whole day of fights and screaming.
    I love him so much and he is everything I have in this world. I want to be the best mommy for my child. I wanna be more calm and patient, though things are still difficult and we are still not well setteled.
    You made me cry when I read your article, especially n.o 6 it really touched me. This is the exact mommy type I wanna be. I promised my self not to ever scream at him. Hopefully things will ease off and life becomes easier..

    I’de rather take an experienced mommy’s advice than a child expert, to me they seem more real as they are coming from first hand moms, who have been though the whole motherhood with its ups and downs. They know better than any expert.

    Thanks a lot for your lovely post, this is exactly what I was looking for….

  199. Hi, I’m the editor of an Indian web portal on parenting called http://www.yowoto.com. I loved your post and would like to share it on our site. We’re a free content space that creates as well as curates good content on parenting from across the world. Please do consider allowing us to share your post on the website. Regards, Sonali

  200. Reading this gives me motivation to be a better mom. Your absolutley right about going to bed regreting angry words you screamed at one of your kids. Its an awful feeling. You never know how if one day they don’t wake up and you are left with an ugly memory or likewise. Your post goes towards any possible loved one in our life. I will deffinetly try this challenge! Thank you for writing this!

  201. I have read and reread this post a few times now and find it so inspirational. It’s nice to know the frustration we feel as parents is ordinary, but how we handle it definitely needs to be extraordinary. I appreciate your honest insight and it has encouraged me to have more patience with my little ones and learn other ways to express my needs as a parent.

    Thanks!

    Catherine
    http://capturinginspirations.com

  202. I loved this post! My husband and I both need to try the Orange Rhino Challenge. I feel so overwhelmed sometimes with working, driving the kids places, getting dinner on time, playing with my kids, exercising…….you get the idea. The stress gets unloaded onto my four kids. I’m hoping this challenge will help us change our ways! Keeping fingers crossed. XX

  203. Wow! I just want to say thank you for this! I have had the worst day today. My babies are 2 years old and 6 months old. My 2 year old acts completely different around me than she does around her Dad, which means that he doesn’t understand. He has actually said to me “

  204. I love your idea! This is great. I am the author of a book coming out in about a week and a half about toddlers and ADHD. Many toddlers with ADHD are yelled at constantly because of their difficulty with regulating their behavior, which then only gives rise to a secondary disorder of oppositional defiant disorder (which is partially genetic but mostly environment, unlike ADHD which is just genetic, but of course exacerbated by certain environmental situations). I have not raised my voice at my kids in at least 6 months now. I am really impressed with you. You are an inspiration to many!! Keep writing -Donna Mac-

  205. I just wanted to say thank you for the helpful tips. I am a yeller. I think it is probably a learned behavior from my mother mixed with angry emotions about my mother. I feel like a horrible mom when I put my kids to bed. particularly tonight! I feel so distance from my children and just want to love and cuddle them all over again and get back to the way it use to be. I have a 3.5 year old and a 19 month old. I am going to start tomorrow the challenge and break the cycle of yelling! Thank you for the inspiration to change!

  206. Yesterday I shouted at my 9 year old for being disrespectful to a teacher and his reaction and fear of me telling him off (or yelling!) have traumatised me. He was so afraid of my reaction that when I found out and confronted him regarding his actions he just broke down in what I can only describe as a panic attack. If I had witnessed this scenario by someone else I would assume that the child was being harmed at home and this is certainly not the case in our home, we don’t even smack the boys but I can imagine myself to be fierce when I shout. This has made me reflect on my methods of disciplining my children and breaking the cycle of my upbringing. I feel like the worst mother in the world and am so embarrassed by my sons reaction. My main role in life is to love, nurture and cherish my children and to see him shrink away from me in fear has cut me like a knife. Reading this article has made me feel human again – from now on this is my bible. Thank you for being so honest and sharing your experience with us.

    • Thankyou…..Knowing that Im not the only one that has these experiences is wonderful as it stops me from hating myself and helps me to focus more on what I need to do to not repeat this again. Right now as im typing this Im getting stressed as im ignoring something else I need to be doing right now. So Ill follow my instinct and Ill sign off now …..Thankyou for the honesty…..

  207. Thank you!! This is so inspiring! I am sure we all feel guilty when going to bed if we had yelled at someone that day….. and I did felt I am the worst mum in the world for yelling my 18 months old. Thanks again for sharing your wisdom

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