toddler yelling - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 06-24-2010, 01:23 AM - Thread Starter
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How can I get my 15mo to stop yelling or screeching? She frequently does it when I'm talking to someone, and also at grocery store or restaurant. She was doing it today at a playgroup when she was in my arms and we were leaving and saying bye. Then again today when DH got home (and he said hello to DD, held her, played for a minute), we were talking and she stood right by us and was yelling as loud as she could. We were both saying shhh, no yelling, etc then he finally got frustrated and yelled over her "DD, SHHHHHH!" and she broke down in tears.

What I do is tell her to be quiet or use an indoor voice and that is not working. Otherwise she is the calmest most well behaved toddler around, so this is throwing me off.

mom to DD 3/09
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#2 of 5 Old 06-24-2010, 01:48 AM
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If you find a way, let me know, my 19 month old does the same thing. Today at the grocery store, she was being good, babbling in a normal voice and then someone else's toddler across the store started up and she apparently felt the need to respond in kind. Every time he screeched, she did. They started feeding off each other. And if I told her no, she looked right at me and did it on purpose. Little stinker! I just kept telling her no, there's no reason to holler in the store, quiet voice etc etc.

One thing though that I keep in mind is that my little one is basically non verbal. Her vocabulary includes like 5 words. And even then, I am not sure she actually understands the meaning of 2 of those 5, she just says them in response to a question. So, the screetching is really one of the few ways she can communicate.
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#3 of 5 Old 06-24-2010, 09:34 AM
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Sounds like she's frustrated she doesn't have the attention. Which is annoying, but normal. Give her the words you want her to use to get your attention 'excuse me mommy!'. They obviously may not stick yet at this point. I do a combination of ignoring the behavior now that she's older and will remember to use the social graces we've taught, and responding to her intent by saying 'just a moment dear and i'll be with you'. They don't have much patience for waiting at that age, it will get better. I would not yell back, in fact I'd respond in an extra soft voice to help her calm down

Mama to DD1 4/08fly-by-nursing1.gif and DD2 10/10 bfinfant.gifcd.gifcat.gif
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#4 of 5 Old 06-24-2010, 03:13 PM
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Sometimes I play an "inside/outside voices" game with my two year old. Run outside and scream as loud as you can, then run inside and whisper. If she's ever screaming indoors, I just take her outside and tell her to scream. She gets it out of her system and then gets interested in something else, eventually. Although I'm not sure I'd try it with a toddler that young--might encourage the screaming more!

But really, how do you get her to stop? Wait a few months...or years...

You could also try teaching her a quiet scream. Or animal noises? My DD was really into making animal noises before she started talking (her first "word" was imitating a dog barking!), so I could usually get her to be quieter by asking her what a dog says, what a cat says, what a butterfly says (whisper whisper is the answer to that one!), etc. She knew at least 50 animal sounds by 18 months. I have a great video of her making them, which she still loves to watch...

Mama to DD, my 2/24/08 BIG KID formerly known as sling baby, and DS, my 12/23/11 train-loving, wall-climbing toddler! 
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#5 of 5 Old 06-25-2010, 12:40 AM
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Apart from waiting it out, I gave DS lots of places where he could scream. I let him scream in the grocery store and restaurants (we chose family friendly places)...made for very fast service. I would even bring cups for him to bang about in a restaurant. Made the staff move like lightening. Meals in the table in 15 minutes flat, bill ready to go before your fork could hit the plate. People in grocery store lines would literally push me to the front of the line.

Then he could also scream in the park or at the pool and at play group as loud as he wanted.

The only place he could not/cannot scream was in our home. If he did, I simply put my hands over my ears and said "Benjamin No Shout. No Scream here. Very loud. Hurt mommy's ears. No." If he didn't stop, I would scoop him up and take him to his room and say "Benjamin scream here, okay, mommy go. Mommy no like screaming." In the car, we would simply stop the car, get out, and go to his face and say "NO, NOT safe! No scream in car!" until he got it.

And he did get it evenutally. It took a few months, and maybe he just out grew it, but he knows now if he needs to have a cathartic scream to wait for the park, or a play space, or go to his own room.

Rebekah - mom to Ben 03/05 and Emily 01/10, a peace educator, and a veg*n and wife to Jamie.
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