If It Doesn’t Work, Don’t Do It Louder


If It Doesn’t Work, Don’t Do It Louder!

Our 17-year-old adopted son has an almost imperceptible window of tolerance. It is small. Anything and everything seems to push him into anger. We are sick and tired of his angry responses. Give us a break, oh Lawd!

To be honest, son only has 3 difficult times during the day: waking up, going to bed and everything in between. But it is the anger that makes us angry. So I begin to wonder, “Why do we get angry with son when we know he is going to respond with anger, and 9 out of 10 times NOT do what we asked? Is anger the most powerful tool we have in our parenting toolbox? Is it the only tool we have? Is it just the last straw that we run to when all diplomacy fails and we don’t want to start a physical war? What would happen if we did NOT get angry? And why on earth is our anger ok and kid’s not?

It’s not like anger sneaks up on us unannounced. Sure, we all have our moments when some trigger throws us into a raging maniac (well, at least I have) and we stand by speechless wondering where that came from. Most times we see the progression, which starts somewhere in our stomach, with neutral to irritated tonality, volume increases (if it doesn’t work, do it louder), followed by repeated instructions, then onto shame, blame and threats, finally if no action by child, punishment, physical touch, grab, shove or worse.
I have my reasons and excuses about being sick and tired of being sick and tired, and after 13 years you’d think son would finally get that dad loves him, etc. But what is, is. I with my small brain cannot figure out that a storm is coming, so I get angry and voila—the storm comes. Darn that kid, can’t he control his anger any better than that?

So I wonder, why do parents get angry? Why do you yell at your kids even when you know that it doesn’t help or heal. Why? If we adults can’t control ourselves, how can we expect our traumatized kids with faulty wiring to do any better? I have my suspicions, but I’d like to hear from you.

Go to our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/postinstitute) and let us know why do you get angry with your kids?

-by David Durovy

David Durovy is managing editor for the Post Parenting Toolbox Series and other Post publications. He and his wife Susan are also partners in Post Institute. Together Susan and David have parented over 27 therapeutic special needs foster children for over 13 years and adopted four of them (at ages 6, 16, 17 & 21) from the Virginia Foster Care system. They met Bryan Post at one of his Parent Camps in 2004, then took the youngest son to a Post Family Camp a year later. They have been committed to helping desperate foster and adopted children and parents around the world with Bryan’s love-based Family Centered approach to understanding and parenting in a new paradigm that is beyond consequences, reason, logic or control.