I had a horrible experience on Sunday morning when I went for a walk. It was sunny, cool and breezy and I knew it would be good for body and soul. As I approached a house coming up on my right, I could hear a father yelling at his child/children. He was loud, he was swearing, his tone was nasty and his words were terrible. I could hear his kid whimpering and crying. I stopped dead in my tracks.

My heart started racing and my hands were shaking and I couldn’t catch my breath. He kept yelling, yelling and yelling – the kids kept crying. Part of me wanted to go up to the door, knock and say, ‘Dude, I’ve been there. What can I do to help.’ I did not think that would go well at all. I could not help but wonder what someone has heard through an open window at our house.

So, I stood there. And worried. And got more and more upset. Then I ran into a friend and she stood with me and listened to this man yell at his kids. We deemed that it was ‘regular’ yelling – the ‘pissed-off-lost-your-head-totally-had-it kind of yelling’ – not a ‘call DYFS’ kind of situation. Still sad. It got quiet and we moved on.

Well, sort of. I have not really ‘moved on’.

I can’t stop thinking about it. I’ve yelled. I’ve lost my mind and my temper. I hate it when it happens, I make appropriate apologies, debrief things with the kids. But it’s not enough. I know that apologizing doesn’t make it ‘ok’. I really want to do more than say ‘sorry’ and try harder.

So I am taking The Challenge from The Orange Rhino. I’ll start with 30 days. It’s a manageable goal. I don’t know if I’ve gone 30 days without yelling – I don’t think so šŸ™

I am so glad there is a mom who has chosen to be this open and honest about yelling – the causes, the damage, the aftermath and the solutions. She has come up with lots ideas and strategies to help.

I don’t think it is as ‘easy’ as that. I have issues and triggers and know that there are things that send me straight through the roof. I think this challenge will make me more conscious of how I handle the next giant surge of anger and frustration. If I can manage it for 30 days, what would make me think I can’t catch up to The Orange Rhino – she’s at 521 days šŸ™‚

I am intent on getting that guy’s yelling voice out of my head – but most of all my own yelling voice out of my kids’ heads.

Please tell me you think it’s possibly to quit yelling? How about joining me?

(I’ve set the days on the right to ‘0’ because it’s only fair to start there)

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