This is possibly the number one battle around our house – the rule that gets broken the most. With three boys ages 8, 6 and 6, we got a whole lot of yelling going on. Boys yelling in the backyard. Boys yelling in the front. Boys in the back yard yelling to boys in the front. I’m fairly certain our neighbors hate us. As in, telling all their friends “We have the most UNBELIEVABLY LOUD set of kids next door who routinely ruin our evenings and frighten our pets” hatred of us. Perhaps this would not be such a problem if we lived in the country. Perhaps boys on isolated farms are allowed to yell all day, every day. Who knows. But in normal neighborhoods like ours with homes a normal distance apart, boys are probably appreciated about as much as neighbors with hobbies like roosters. Or tinkering with jet engines.
Generally I make several trips to the back door to deliver increasingly threatening mandates like “No. More. Yelling!” and other brilliant fatherly gems like this. Then I send one or more of them to timeout in their room for yelling. After the timeout is completed and the boys return to the back yard to resume all the yelling, I eventually just sit on the couch and yell as loudly as I can, “STOOOOOOOPPP THE YELLLLLLLING!!!!!!!!!!”
Ironically, this seems to work quite well at times.
Unless you have multiple boys, you may not be aware that boys can even shift gears in their yelling, breaking into a sort of “turbo mode” necessary in emergency situations. This happens frequently when both of our twins are yelling at us at the same moment.
Let’s just pause right there so that you may fully appreciate that last statement, and develop appropriate feelings of sympathy, embarrassment, and concern for us. Ok, thank you. Your feelings are duly noted.
Twin brothers attempting to simultaneously communicate with mom or dad typically results in one or both of them engaging “turbo yelling” mode, which is great fun. This phenomenon consists of one boy, concerned that his yelling at mom is not being heeded or noted, proceeds to increase not only VOLUME to a level that exceeds his brother, but also PITCH.
Our Nathan is the master of turbo yelling. He and Nicholas will bust through the door and begin yelling their urgent updates, usually about who threw whose item of school clothing on the roof or who peed on the side of the house. Nathan can begin a sentence at full volume, but once threatened by the volume of his brother, or any other sibling, can raise volume and pitch at will without ever taking a breath. He’s like an approaching fire truck, sirens getting louder by the second, and moving right up the scale like running your hand up a piano keyboard. By the time they’re done, Nathan is purple, your eardrums are shattered, and small birds and wildlife outside our home have perished. But victory has been claimed. Brother defeated.
Do not mess with boys who have mastered turbo yelling.