Parental Laryngitis

370 days without yelling!  Republished since I literally, can not speak. At least I know it isn’t from yelling! (First Published November 13, 2012 when I had gone 280 days without yelling and had 85 days of loving more to go!)

Dear Doctor,

Help! My throat really hurts. It’s been throbbing for about three years actually and some days I can’t even speak. I wake up fine but then within ten minutes of the kids waking up and arguing with me about their clothes for the day, it flares right up. It settles down when they are watching their morning T.V. show but then oddly enough it starts scratching and pulsing at breakfast time, normally right around the time someone throws his food or complains that he didn’t like what I served. It’s the oddest illness I’ve ever had. It comes and goes all day and on the worst of days is accompanied by a throbbing head ache and a massively aching heart and tears. Lots of them. Taking deep breaths and telling myself it will go away isn’t helping. I’m at a loss. Please help me. I haven’t reached out to you before because some days, the really good days, I have no symptoms at all, and others well other days I don’t think the pain stops from the minute I open my eyes in the morning. Well and to be honest, I am kind of embarrassed about my problem. None of my friends seem to suffer from it, or at least they don’t say that they do. Please don’t judge me. Just help me!

A frustrated parent


Dear frustrated parent,

Based on what you’ve described it sounds like you have Parental Laryngitis, more commonly known as “Yelling at your kids too much.” The defining symptoms are: that it goes away when kids are sleeping or at school then comes on quickly, sometimes with a warning and sometimes not, and immense guilt. The good news is that you are not alone – at least 80% of parents suffer from this. Personal, marital, family, and social stress set up any parent to feel crappy and tired, two known causes of this condition. Children also experience extreme exhaustion and crappy moods further on setting the symptoms.  Take two of these Orange Rhino “pills” that I created as an alternative to yelling and read about The Orange Rhino Challenge, a community to support people like you, and then call me in the morning.

Dr. Orange Rhino


Dear Dr. Orange Rhino,

I looked up Orange Rhino pills online for the first time ever. I like to understand the medicines I am prescribed. I found “as of 2009, orange rhino are ecstasy pills.” Um, hello? Doctor? Are you an idiot? Did you mean to prescribe me that? Don’t you do your research?????

A frustrated, and now questioning, parent


Dear a frustrated, and now questioning, parent,

Well, well, well. What a funny Freudian slip, eh? And a wee bit embarrassing  Yes, I did mean to write The Orange Rhino. I specifically chose the name because Rhinos are calm animals except when provoked which I think is how most parents truly are. We are calm beings but when triggered by our children’s actions, or in-actions  we charge or scream. And I intentionally chose orange to inspire the sense of warmth we as parents want and to give us energy and strength to not yell.

I actually think it is kind of funny that I missed this tidbit of information when I did my research naming the prescription. Oops. But the thing is, in a way, MY Orange Rhino prescription is like an ecstasy pill (I’m guessing here, not based on my personal research!) MY Orange Rhino prescription is also about feeling happier, lighter, freer, more confident, more loving. Not yelling will induce these feelings. So while my name was indeed a slip, I am okay with that.

Again, take two of these and call me in the morning.

Tonight I moved these to my kitchen cabinet where snacks and cereal are, in other words, where I get frustrated with my boy’s indecision. A LOT. And to be clear, these are ORANGE M&M’s not pills! Other popular storage places: purse, diaper bag, bedside table…

Directions: When cranky and feeling your throat start to twitch, your hands start to sweat, and your eyes start to pop out of your head, take two “pills” and remember what The Orange Rhino stands for: a promise to your kids to be more warm and loving.

Then logon to the and yell there via typing. You do not have to store in a cool place. Simply store in a place where you are most apt to yell. Additionally, for more alternatives to help reduce your parental laryngitis, read this document: 100 Alternatives to yelling at your kids. WARNING: You may look like a fool trying some of them.

SECOND WARNING: It can take more than 10 days for the laryngitis to lessen. Please keep trying all alternatives until you are at a place where you feel better. Don’t give up.

Best of luck,
Dr. Orange Rhino


Dear Dr. Orange Rhino,

You were right. My throat isn’t scratching as much. I feel happier. I feel better. It did take a while but that’s okay. Well worth it.

An ecstatic parent

Note: This post is intended to be sarcastic and fun. I am not way endorsing illegal drug use. It is also not intended to make fun of anyone who does suffer from real, chronic laryngitis. 


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8 thoughts on “Parental Laryngitis

  1. I think I will use orange Tic-Tacs instead… my favorite! Wonder if they come sugar free- or a similar candy with a natural sweetener like stevia or xylitol? Hmm…time to investigate! 🙂

    • I’m on day 2 of no yelling. I’m a homeschool mom, and yes I yell. I’m off buy ORANGE tic-tacs and ORANGE paraphernalia!

  2. Well, I didn’t get signed in on time for the 30 day challenge.. But I am here regardless!!! Guess what! I found a very cool way to remind myself .. prepare myself .. while I was driving to get my son at school. The road is lined with double orange lines!! Don’t cross over those lines!!!! So.. it was a reminder .. which translated into a prep talk to myself .. preparing .. and even a little excited about this new adventure!!!

  3. I love the explanation of why you picked the Orange Rhino. I was wondering! I had no idea it was another name for ecstacy but I do like the double entendre. Working hard to be a more ecstatic mom. I may even make a bottle of orange M&Ms as a reminder.

  4. Here is an interesting tidbit, it has been less than 7 months since you wrote that Blog post and the first thing that pops up on Google when you type in Orange Rhino now is YOU:) Actually the first NINE things! Thanks for sharing your experience and helping so many parents out. I am on day 1 of the 30 day challenge of yelling less at my 5 kiddos. I did well today and feel lighter already:)

    • LOL. I know right?! I must have been asleep when I googled “The Orange Rhino” months ago. So funny though! thanks for reading

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