Parent to parent: When does shouting at your children go too far?

Raising your voice has gone up, especially for parents of young children.

A survey suggests 40% of parents say they are yelling or even screaming at their kids during the pandemic. You be the judge of whether it is right or wrong to yell, but many parents are eager to know how to cope with the underlying issue.

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Ashley Black is homeschooling her 8,6 and 4-year-old boys.

"I am noticing with the pandemic and all the stuff that comes with it, that my patience is getting thin and it is becoming increasingly more difficult to just talk to them. I am so worn out," said Black. "I am disappointed in myself that we have gotten to this point but also I have to remind myself that this is hard on all of us."

We spoke with Dr. Andrea Taylor, a psychologist with UT Health.

"As a parent myself I can absolutely understand the stressors that my patients bring to me are a lot of the same ones that I am dealing with myself," said Taylor.

Taylor says her clients have come to her for the same reason: parental yelling. She advises parents to first take a step back and acknowledge that they have added stress, then understand why they are yelling.

"There are plenty of people who are like ‘yes, I got whooped. I got yelled at. It worked for me.’ It’s not that we want everyone to be overly sensitive," Taylor said. "We want them to be able to live in the world but at the same time for most people, when we get yelled at, we shut down and we stop listening."

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Taylor says if you feel like you want to yell. Stop. Give yourself a time out, but not in a bad way.

"One of the main things I think it can look like right now is knowing when to take a parent time out," advises Taylor. "Not taking time out as a punishment but saying I need some time." 

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There are several ways to calm down like deep breathing, dancing, going outside. These calm-down tools can even be taught to your child when in the middle of a meltdown.

"My greatest advice is to give yourself some grace," said Black. "This all so overwhelming also keep in mind that our kids are going through it too."