thread for people who *used* to yell and/or spank their kids - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 14 Old 08-09-2012, 12:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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maybe one already exists?  this is for people who are done being angry with their families and are letting go of *all* of it!  i am coming clean in saying that i am *done* yelling, which means i have to 'fess up to all my friends about how anger ruled my relationship with my family.  but sometimes it's an odd thing to talk about because people don't talk about it.  they, like i used to, pretend like it doesn't happen.  or when they *do* lose it, they feel as if they've "fallen off the wagon".

i'm here to say that there is no use for anger in my family!  but in order for that to work i am *demanding* that my husband, and my dad, STOP being angry with their family---that's the three little humans and dog that they have taken a part in making and are CHOOSING to live with.  THAT's the part that was missing for so long for me.  i never felt like i had the "right" to tell anyone "how to live".  then i realized that i was telling my kids how to live, but from a CRACKED POV!  Now i am telling my HUSBAND and DAD how to live (share, don't yell, always help) and letting my kids BE KIDS and learn how to live the way kids know best, by watching, listening, and re-enacting.

are my kids still yelling?  you bet!  but i AM STRONG ENOUGH to handle noise and i AM STRONG ENOUGH to be hit/bit/*anything* by them.  why was i ever afraid of a baby's slap or bite?  the way i used to spank my oldest (now 7) would TERRIFY me if my kid acted that way to me!  or if anyone acted that way to me!  but now i am strong enough---it will never hurt as bad as the guilt of hitting your own child.

i am *done* with anger in my family, and i will not tolerate it from any adult living in this house.  if an adult says, "just let me be mad!" of course i will let them.  anyone is free to do whatever they want---but i will not stop believing that children learn by example, and we, adults, are the ones who have the self-discipline to model right living.

this post feels a bit rambly and incohesive, but i hope my message gets across---anger is a choice not a way of life!

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#2 of 14 Old 08-09-2012, 02:13 PM
 
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I think you're on the right path: anger is a natural, normal emotion, but it is one that we can learn to manage and deal with in a mature manner.

Personally, I think we still don't have th "right" to tell others how to live; but we *can* set guidelines about what is ok and what is not ok in our house.

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#3 of 14 Old 08-10-2012, 01:42 PM
 
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I'll join! I'm still working on "used to" but the yelling is definitely LESS already.

 

And yes, everyone is allowed to feel what they feel, but their actions are a different story and need to stay within the realm of acceptable for your family/household. However, it really helps to not be angry to begin with! I have a weird instinct to "NO!" everything. Like today, the boys were chattering happily in the back of the car and it turned into singing LOUDLY and general silliness. It was irritating to me on some level, but instead of telling them to pipe down, like I normally would, I chose to "let them be them" and enjoy them enjoying themselves. I'm embarrassed that that kind of thing is actually WORK for me. I don't know why it is, but it is. (Okay, it's because I'm a grump, but I don't know why that is. I actually love my life, except for the part where I'm a grump...)

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#4 of 14 Old 08-10-2012, 05:38 PM
 
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I can certainly appreciate the value of not yelling and giving kids a good example.  A good general life rule: You can do what you like as long as it doesn't create a problem/heartache for someone else.  Kinda broad, but easy yard stick.  So to me, a kid smacking their parent is a problem because it hurts, so it shouldn't be allowed.  Besides, when the child gets the message that hitting isn't a problem, then they will continue to do it.  Yeah, not telling others how to live is great!  But then again, how is how you are living affecting others? 

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#5 of 14 Old 08-11-2012, 10:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i am changing my perception of pain---there is a continuum---when my oldest was a baby i was offended at almost any "aggressive" act on his part---esp once he reached about 18 months---that's when the spanking really got going

it will never hurt me when my baby or small kids hit me because i am STRONG!  i think people forgot how strong they really are.  when my baby bites me i tickle her because she is asking in the only way she knows for my COMPLETE EMOTIONAL AND PHYSICAL attention.  that's what hitting for a kid achieves---they are saying YOU DON"T UNDERSTAND HOW IMPORTANT THIS IS TO ME---I NEEED YOU!

now, when they are about to do something "naughty"---and kids will often "threaten" to do stuff for a good amount of time before they actually do it (they *do* want you to step in and stop them, but not with anger!)---now when they wind up the fist high over their head i say, "i'm going to tickle you so hard!"  --tickling replaces spanking and singing replaces yelling

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

i wonder if anyone who *used* to yell/spank is noticing how hard it is when *you* stop yelling but your kids are still yelling and/or hitting each other?  now how do you stop them?  my oldest (7) is so attached to "his stuff" that he sometimes *explodes* when the 4yo "touches his stuff".  Now I just physically prevent the 7yo from hitting/kicking the 4yo and maybe tickling him to disable him.  it's a delicate delicate process!  i know it's working because *I* can see his aggression slowly diminishing, in the same way that *I* can see his reading slowly improving despite the fact that he's not "on target" with the charts---same thing why i stopped going to pediatricians because he didn't fit the charts (but he *did* match descriptions of how my husband developed as an infant--long and skinny---also DH was slow to read)

my point is that if you give up anger with your family---ppl will say that your kids need it for boundaries---but whatever way *you* are able to let go---if *you* see small measured changes in their behavior or in your own level of anxiety, then *you* will know it is working despite others' good intentions to advise you.

what kinds of non-violent techniques do you use with your children fighting?

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#6 of 14 Old 08-11-2012, 01:06 PM
 
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I spanked a few times with both kids, but I couldn't stand watching what it did to our relationship it honestly broke my heart, so I just stopped. I am a recovering yeller, although I really have to watch myself during pms because I get seriously moody and cranky. Yes, my kiddo's still yell at me.... I tell them it's ok to feel whatever they're feeling, but just try to tone it down because the yelling makes mama's head hurt. We really try to model and teach being respectful and considerate of others feelings/needs here, that has helped everyone a lot.

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#7 of 14 Old 08-12-2012, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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realizing that i am strong and capable enough to make myself present *every* time my 7yo strikes his brother or the 4yo is screaming because he wants to take something.  i show up.  i am strong enough to physically be with them and wrestle/snuggle--carry them around like apes---sing...

realizing that people find it offensive if you *don't* yell at your kids!  

people=my husband when he gets angry about "he-can't-talk-to-me-that-way!"

realizing that the ramifications of choosing non-anger actually *makes* people angry!

i *am* proud to give up anger!  I *do* feel enlightened.  I feel very very sad about things said or done in anger, from me or anyone.

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#8 of 14 Old 08-12-2012, 07:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OliveJewel View Post

...
i wonder if anyone who *used* to yell/spank is noticing how hard it is when *you* stop yelling but your kids are still yelling and/or hitting each other? ...

 

Ummmm.... I stopped yelling one week and the kids starting hitting/wrestling the next. They will hit each other harder and harder til the little one cries. But no matter what I tell him (come to me if you need help, don't play with someone who hits) he doesn't listen. He chooses to stay and be bullied by the older one. So after the heat of the moment is over, I talk to him about his choices/options but he never wants to play separately from the older one.

 

I just keep using the word "respectful" and hope it will sink in eventually.... As long as no one's bleeding, I'm letting it go for now. There has to be an adjustment period. (And b/c if I try to STOP ALL the hitting cold turkey when it's just started, I will completely lose it.)

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#9 of 14 Old 08-13-2012, 07:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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my kids hit and yell too, and i don't think it will let up for a while... my husband still yells and gets offended by the kids (even though he feels bad afterward and is trying to stop)---i am holding on strong to the idea that anger toward the family is not useful!!!

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#10 of 14 Old 08-13-2012, 04:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by OliveJewel View Post

realizing that people find it offensive if you *don't* yell at your kids!   ...

realizing that the ramifications of choosing non-anger actually *makes* people angry!

 

 

I don't know if this applies to what you are observing, but I have two thoughts.  1, this might be regional.  I've learned here at MDC that, for example, in the southern US spanking and a top-down parenting philosophy is expected. If you don't spank or threaten you're not a responsible parent. This isn't true in all parts of the US.   2, from my own experience, when someone else's child is misbehaving in public a prompt response from the parent goes a long way towards helping me be much more tolerant and patient with the whole thing.  Not an out-of-control response, not spanking.  Just prompt and firm. Even if it doesn't work and the kid continues misbehaving, I really appreciate seeing that the parent is at least doing something about it. Heaven knows my kids misbehave plenty just like all kids. But when parents do not step in and at least try to correct their child's misbehavior, yes, that makes me angry. 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by OliveJewel View Post

i wonder if anyone who *used* to yell/spank is noticing how hard it is when *you* stop yelling but your kids are still yelling and/or hitting each other?

 

Yes, but I don't think it's entirely the parent's 'fault' either, I think it's also inherent personality. Some people are yellers and hitters, so it's no surprise when their kids are yellers and hitters, too. It doesn't erase their personal responsibility, it just means both parent and child need to work harder behaving.

 

And that's my experience.  My anger fuse is about an inch long, I tend to yell and regret it later.  I hate how the anger takes over.  I spanked my kids when they were little, got very, VERY angry and would yell a lot.  It always felt horrible, and it was just getting worse and the spanking more frequent.   So I got help, got medication and got on top of my anger. Well, the very worst of it anyway.  My youngest is 13 y.o., so I guess that means I've been medicating to control the anger for 11 years.  I do what I gotta do. 

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#11 of 14 Old 08-13-2012, 05:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think if you really give up anger people will try to convince you that you are crazy and you might try to convince *yourself* that you are crazy---but how can it be wrong?  just one emotional option of many!  i choose to react with singing and tickling and quiet and shhhh and hands resting gently on the loved one in anger---i am not *choosing* their anger!  ---   they are choosing their own anger!  how painful!

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#12 of 14 Old 08-13-2012, 06:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by OliveJewel View Post

I think if you really give up anger people will try to convince you that you are crazy and you might try to convince *yourself* that you are crazy---but how can it be wrong?  just one emotional option of many!  i choose to react with singing and tickling and quiet and shhhh and hands resting gently on the loved one in anger---i am not *choosing* their anger!  ---   they are choosing their own anger!  how painful!


you are a bigger person than i am. there is no way i can do away with anger. yes i try. yes i make sure i take care of myself too. yes i have claimed my inch of space from my child too - she knows sometimes to leave me alone, but the anger is not gone.

 

yes what has gotten rare, very rare is me lashing out at dd to show my frustration...

 

... but dd has watched my process and seen me struggle and fail...

 

and seen how things affect one another. we both seek out alone time. but we have both slipped and failed.

 

lesson learnt. we have to take care of our own selves. there is a lot of stress all around us. we have learnt to understand and forgive. 

 

this has been a process since dd was 6. she is the one who has helped me deal with my anger. and i mean normal reaction. nothing requiring anger management classes. but dd is the one person who has helped me see the good side of anger - as an action emotion and helped me not to react.

 

but the more i took care of my own needs i found i could parent from a place of compassion. it was easier doing that than trying to control my anger.


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#13 of 14 Old 08-14-2012, 09:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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yesterday there was a pile-up---baby, M (4), puppy dog, cat, and me---all of us just sitting calmly, smiling inside---and M broke the silence with, "I really feel that you love me, Mom."  As my heart poured forth with love I realized that I have never had that experience with N (7).
 
I have had the opposite---N has been telling me "i-hate-you" and every combination of swear word since a long long time.  when i was first pg with A and so so so sick i was talking on the phone to a long lost friend who was clearing out her life and unraveling old emotional baggage to let go---N needed me off the phone---i had *nothing* in me, energetically---he screamed IHATEYOU---and me, still hanging on to my personal offences at the time, snapped back, "Well, ihateyoutoo so now where does that leave us?"---   .   .   .   ---*audible gasp from my childless friend on the phone*---me: "yeah, well that's just where i'm at right now."
 
!!!
 
so now that i am letting go of anger i am just so sad-for-N/sad-for-me
 
but i feel like we are healing---but how painful that all this feels directly related to anger---but how NORMAL that is, in the world---to be ANGRYALLTHETIME with your family, with your life---my point is that N is his own person and i will love him stronger than anyone, for at least the next ten years of his life, but if he never chooses peace?!  the thought is heart-breaking!  and meaningless at the same time!   because we all, each individual, find our own way, regardless of our parents!  how painful a discovery!
 
i *do* see N choosing peace, and those are the foundations of our relationship and our trust, even if some of the steps feel huge and far between, i am strong enough!
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#14 of 14 Old 08-14-2012, 06:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by journeymom View Post My youngest is 13 y.o., so I guess that means I've been medicating to control the anger for 11 years.  I do what I gotta do. 

 

I've been medicating for three years to control the anger. thumb.gif


My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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