My sister once mailed me the following comic strip...
I was greatly amused until I read the handwritten post-it note that was attached. "This made me think of ya'll. Ha Ha." Did you read the part where I said she mailed it to me? She felt so strongly that it resembled us that she paid 42 cents to show me. Sigh.... It's true, though.
Too often the yelling does come from frustration and anger. The following is a common exchange in our home:
Me: "Boys, it's time to get upstairs and clean your room.
(A minute later...)
I SAID GET UP THERE AND CLEAN IT NOW!"
Ian: "I'M GOING. I'M GOING."
(A few minutes later from upstairs....)
Ian: "WESLEY, YOU HAVE TO HELP ME CLEAN UP."
Wesley: "NO, I TOO TIRED!"
I: "I'M GONNA TELL MOM!"
W: "I NOT YOU FRIEND!"
I: "YES, YOU ARE!"
W: "NO, I IS NOT!"
I: "MOM! WESLEY SAID HE'S NOT MY FRIEND."
Me: "WESLEY, YOU ARE HIS FRIEND SO GET USED TO IT AND START CLEANING! AND STOP ALL THIS YELLING IT'S DRIVING ME CRAZY!"
At this point they are standing at the top of the stairs looking at me like I'm crazy. Because I am. Because they've driven me there!
Wesley is more of a yeller than Ian is. In general he is just more of a presence than his brother, but I think some of the yelling also stems from the slight language barrier we have between his three year old jabber and my understanding of what the English language should sound like. Often when I can't understand what he's trying to tell me, he just starts yelling at me. Because obviously screaming it at the top of your lungs makes it so much more understandable than speaking it in a normal voice.
W: "Mom, wadoo why-ins bite whena tuts dem?"
W: "I SEH! WADOO WHY-INS BITE WHENA TUTS DEM?"
Me: "Wesley, I still can't understand you babe. What are you saying?"
W: "WADOOWHYINSBITEWHENATUTUSDEM, MOM!"
Me: "WESLEY, STOP YELLING, YOU'RE MAKING IT WORSE!"
Ian: "He wants to know why lions bite when you touch them, Mom."
W: "YES! WHY WHENA TUTS DEM? I JUS WANNA TUTS DEM BUT DEY BITE!"
Me: "Oh. Uh.... Cause they don't like to be touched."
W: "Oh. Uh-tay. I hungwee."
Not all of the yelling is negative. I can't count the number of times Wesley has yelled "I WUBOO, MOM!" as he runs by me in his underwear and a batman cape or some other fantastic superhero costume concoction. Every night bedtime ends with a series of "I LOVE YOU" and "I LOVE YOU, TOO" being yelled back and forth from Brian and I and the boys as we leave their room. But I'd be lying if I said it didn't end almost every night yelling, "I KNOW, WESLEY! NOW STOP YELLING! IT'S TIME TO GO TO BED!" We apparently can't help ourselves.
I have at times attempted to consciously stop the yelling. Usually these attempts are made after I watch a "19 Kids and Counting" episode. I watch Michelle Duggar, in the midst of the chaos and pandemonium that is her home, whispering, "Alright now we need to settle down. Let's use our inside voices. Please don't do that. That's not very nice. Let's try to calm down." Her children seem to listen and respond so well. When I've tried to do the same, my children act as though I'm not in the room. I can say, "Stop fighting guys. Someone is going to get hurt." And I get no response whatsoever. I can yell, "STOP FIGHTING GUYS. SOMEONE IS GOING TO GET HURT." And amazingly they stop. I've had their hearing tested. Both tested normal. They just don't listen. Maybe it's a boy thing? Seriously. I have a couple of extra boys at my home right now and they too are yelling every other sentence that comes out of their mouth. Maybe we are not alone, but rather I'm the only one willing to openly admit that we yell all the time. Or maybe they are just yelling because our home has a "Yell All You Want" vibe in it. Feel free to weigh in on the matter....
So in closing I would just like to say,
WE ARE A FAMILY OF YELLERS AND PROUD OF IT!
Okay maybe not proud, but I don't see it changing anytime soon, so we might as well embrace it.
THANKS FOR READING!