Will My Kids Remember My Yelling?

Will My Kids Remember My Yelling?

Today was a day that I definitely want to forget. One of those days where the kids ignored everything I said, popsicles were dripped all over the house, tantrums were thrown, and I absolutely lost it. I yelled (and I mean I yelled) at my kids.

I am usually a pretty easy-going mama, and I try my best to let things slide off and use a kind voice with my littles, but I'd be lying if I said that occasionally I let my frustrations get the better of me and I yell.

Whether it's because I've asked my son to put on his shoes about a million times, or I have to keep reminding my daughter to stop throwing pillows at her brother, or that we're not going to the park after dinner... sometimes it's like they ONLY hear my yelling, and nothing else.

So the question I've been asking myself is this: Will my kids remember my yelling?


There is a bunch of research that is done on the effects of parenting and disciplining on kids of every age, but let me just save you the trouble, and let you know that NO. You are most likely not scarring your child for life when you yell at them or lose your cool every once in a while.

Even though you may not be affecting their long term development with the occasional yelling or shouting while discipling, when it comes to toddlers (which is the case in my house), your littles' brains are in a stage of development that will cause them to react negatively to the yelling, as opposed to changing/correcting their behavior into the outcome you're looking for.

This has been described as the fight, flight, or freeze: when a parent yells, your child might react by yelling back, crying, or hitting, or freeze and pout, which can drive you even MORE crazy.

Child playing

There's another school of thought that says for every negative interaction in a balanced, healthy relationship, there need to be five positive interactions. This really helps parents in regard to disciplining their kids.

This 5:1 can give you a rough guideline for your own parenting. Are the interactions you have with your babes more often positive than they are negative? And remember that positive interactions don't need to be big expressions of love and affection. They can be as simple as smiling at or engaging with your child, a hug and a kiss after an argument, or sitting down and playing trains after you've had a rough couple of minutes together.


Unfortunately, there's no rule book for the best way to parent your kids. I know. If only it was that easy. Since we don't have a list of do's and don'ts, we need to rely on the experiences we have with our kids and rely on our own emotional responses to given situations to help keep our cool when things get a little overwhelming.

Here's an example of something I deal with when it comes to my littles that might give you a good idea of what I'm talking about:

There is not a single grocery shopping trip that I have experienced in the last 6 months with my kids that I enjoyed, or that I didn't lose my cool at least once with my littles. My kids are prone to wandering. I have a 2-year-old who loves to touch and grab and handle just about everything in every aisle, and a 4-year-old who thinks that every open space on a shelf is there for his Olympic gymnastics training. Needless to say, I have a hard time NOT getting frustrated with my kids when I'm in the grocery store.

Since I know from experience that none of us are going to be happy during or after a grocery trip, I know to avoid it like the plague, and only do grocery pick up or delivery during the day. Otherwise, I make sure Daddy is with us, or I am able to go by myself.

Moving Forward

I think the thing I needed the most when looking up the details on yelling at kids, was to help relieve some of the guilt that I feel whenever I really yell or get upset at my kids. I don't think by any means that I am an extremely angry parent, or that I am a mean parent, but it never feels good to be mad at my kids. I think that what doing this research has taught me, and I hope it will help you, is to know that parents who yell are parents who try.

Child laughing

I'm a parent who is trying my best to help my kids learn and grow and develop, and because of the amount of time we spend together and the expectations I have set for my littles, yes, I sometimes get frustrated and lose my cool. But because I feel that sting of yelling, because I try to be better, I feel a little better knowing that a good parent is a parent who tries.

I know that I'm not going to be perfect all the time as a parent, and I am for sure okay with that, but I do want to make sure that I'm setting myself up in a situation that won't inevitably lead to a shouting match. Learning, growing, and moving on without the overwhelming guilt is something I think every mama and daddy can do!

I know that I'm not alone, and that every parent gets frustrated with their littles and we all lose our cool. At the end of the day, it's all about trying to be better than the day before, giving yourself a break when you've had a hard time, and remembering that you love your kids and YOUR KIDS LOVE YOU.

Back to blog


I am commenting because I somehow found this and the comments made me feel alot better. So hoping, the next mom or dad that comes across this will feel better too. I have a 3.5 year old son who has a speech delay up until this past September he’s made tons of progress. He still is not completely potty trained – i have tried since he’s 2.5. I also have a 2 year old daughter who throws incessant tantrums that always result in her banging her head on something which infuriates and upsets me. But I am a busy tired momma and run a business and always feel stressed and irritated. I was talking to my mother in law about my sons speech teacher and how there is lack of communication with the school, and we got to talking about his potty training to which I explained I lose my patience sometimes when he has accidents. And she told me he had an accident the other day and started to cry pointing at the floor saying “oh no, I sorry’ while crying. I felt like someone punched me in my stomach. Because I know that I have lost it during the potty training (it has been tiring) and I know it has affected him where now he is afraid to tell me if he has had an accident. I started to cry when he got home from school and he was napping and I just laid there holding him. I love my kids so much. Parenting is hard.


I needed to stumble on this as well. I feel so terrible, I just had a perfect day with my two kids at an amusement part. It was July 4th celebration so I decided to stay until the fireworks then a long drive home figuring they would sleep in the car. My 8 year old said he had to go to the bathroom and then we passed a gas station, and I said let’s go to that one but then he said he didn’t have to go anymore. I wasn’t thinking straight , I just wanted to get home and I was exhausted, so I said ok. I am also early menopause (hysterectomy at 30) but I have a hormone patch that helps me be completely in control. The patch fell off in the water park and I didn’t bring another one. So when he said he had to go and I couldn’t find an open gas station anywhere around, I completely flipped out and put it on him , he should have gone before. But it was obviously my fault I am the adult. In a panic I had pulled off into a city where it’s really sketchy, and I told him I didn’t want to stop there because it was a “bad area “. He asked what that meant and I said there’s crime in the area. He got so scared and by the time we found a place to stop way higher up the highway away from there , he was crying saying he was scared. I had been yelling at him the whole time, and even when he said he just wanted to get home I snapped ME TOO. After that I silently cried in the dark the entire way home while he may or may not have been sleeping. I can’t even explain to him why I was suddenly a raging monster, and it’s not even an excuse. I apologized to him after three times and asked for his forgiveness and explained I didn’t mean to make him feel afraid. I am going to take his as a huge learning experience and try to move on , but I feel like the worst mom in the world. Seeing all this made me feel less alone, we are all human and imperfect, as long as we are trying to be better and reflecting on these moments that is what is important.


I don’t believe this is quite true. I myself am pretty hurt when my parents yell at me, and I do remember a lot of times they have yelled at me. Don’t get me wrong, I still love them a bunch, but words do hurt. Parents yelling at their kids could actually have a pretty negative impact on them, see, some kids are more sensitive than others and then there are kids who might not care if they get yelled at. But most kids, they will be hurt by parents words, so you really have to watch out with what tone of voice you use or what you’re saying to them. Because, children will remember, and one day that could cause some serious issues between uou two and some scarring memories. Don’t take advantage of your children’s love, they’ll love you, but you have to play your part and treat them kindly.


I have 1 child a daughter who is 10 years old. I am constantly yelling at her when things are not going right. She does not take in the things I am trying to teach her and she doesn’t change her behavior. Lately, I was called by the school because during math she started screaming and filled in all wrong answers and started complaining there is a noise in her ears and she cannot concentrate. That sent an alarm through me and realized my screaming is starting to have an effect on my child I do not want to damage her at all. I am working on myself to better this situation for her and myself both. I grew up in a shouting family and maybe because it was four kids in the household it didn’t affected me or ny sinlings. She is such a loving child and I love her dearly and I want to bring her up the right way. Thanks for the info, I will always remember this on work on the changes that need to be done.


I yelled at my little boy more than I wanted to since he was few months old, I regret it every single time after the incidents, I try to learn control my temper, and I am getting much better at it, even though I still lost it sometimes, e.g. last week… but the yelling is a lot less not 5 years later. My boy loves me, I know it because he tells me every single day! I realise parenting is not just the adults teaching the kids, it’s a both way street, they teaches us to become a better version of ourselves too! I once was frustrated and spoken strictly to my son (without yelling), even though I ended up making him cry uneccesarily, moments later, I was helping him in the toilet, he out of the blue said to me “happy new year dad, i want to make you a present.” even though I just been so mean at him and said things I should not say… I totally lost it in the toilet and started crying, and ask myself how can I be so impatient with him and push him to learn things in an instant? I must give him time, for everything, growing is a slow process, and he is just a very very young kid, I vow to give all my love and patience to my son, for he is the angel who came to help me to be a better person!


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