I hear you! In fact I can hear you all the way up here in the north when you “yell” at your young teen in Manti. OK, I get it. He’s 13 and he’s annoying at times. He stays up late scanning the internet, leaves his room in a mess, misses the bus, talks back, sluffs his chores, and on and on. Anyone who has reared a teen, or who has been a teen, and that would include all of us, understands your level of frustration. So, I’m going to make my answer short and sweet.
Why, you ask?
1. You are the adult in this duo. One of you has to be the adult and it better be you.
2. You could be endangering your own health by engaging in stressful yelling.
3. Your son will remember everything you’ve said, whether you have meant it or not. Do you really want him remembering the words you have uttered when you are angry? Keep in mind that you will have a life-long relationship with your son. Build that relationship into a strong, positive one.
What could you do instead of yelling?
1. Write a contract with your son, establishing basic expectations and rewards.
2. As he succeeds, increase his responsibilities and add new rewards.
3. Compliment your son often ... every time he meets the terms of the contract.
4. When he slips up, discuss the problem quietly and have him design a solution.
5. Tell him you love him!
Good luck to you, Manti Mom, and please let me know your progress.
Dr. Joan’s Harmony Key: My voice is an instrument of harmony.