Lost your cool with your kid? Here are three steps to recovering and reconnecting.
1. Always start with a sorry
Try, ‘I am sorry I shouted at you. It wasn’t your fault. I am tired so I got angry.’
Putting difficult emotions into clear language equips your child with a skill that many adults struggle with.
Oh, and make sure you avoid the word ‘but’, e.g. ‘I’m sorry, but you just weren’t listening to Mummy.’ The aim is to show that you’re accountable for your actions, not to blame your child because they were just so darn irritating (don’t worry, we’re sure they were) 😅.
2. Explain that while emotions are okay, shouting is not
Try, ‘everyone feels angry sometimes. But it’s not okay to shout, and I’m working on not shouting at you.’
It’s important that your child understands that feeling big emotions is just part of being a human. So be clear that all feelings (happiness, sadness, anger) are acceptable, but all behaviour (shouting, hitting, biting) is not.
3. Open up the conversation
Try, ‘How did my shouting make you feel?’
This is such an important step. While shouting reminds them that you are more powerful than they are, discussing your feelings together gives your child back their voice and shows them that their emotions are just as important as yours.
The thing is: we all shout at our children sometimes. The best thing we can do is to turn losing it into a learning experience for you and your little one.