Feel so guilty for constant shouting at my son as I am exhausted, emotionally/ph

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  • #8137 Report



    I am a single mum to a 5 year old boy, whose father is barely in his life (he does not live in the UK.) I have a very small family, for various reasons I do not have any support from them with caring for my child.

    I am just feeling so guilty for my constant shouting at my son 🙁 🙁 and just wanted to hear other people’s similar experiences, and constructive support.

    I, like many of you too, feel so disconnected because of a severe lack of social life and lack of energy to invest so much in my friendships. Moved to a new area, nr Glastonbury which I love, but no local network yet.

    Today was horrible as my son was bitten ( minorly) by a dog but he didn’t tell me because he thought I would shout at him, or the dog..(  I thought the dog had only nicked the cloth of his trouser leg). I feel dreadful, and ashamed and need to find a way to help us.

    There are wonderful times too but feel like I am in a cycle of negative behaviour with my overreacting and want to stop it before it gets worse.

    #8141 Report


    Hi Mellymel. What you say resonates with me. I am a father of two: 10 year old girl and nearly 7 year old boy.

    I have quite a stressful job, long hours, and (importantly) a lazy soon to be ex-wife who has much lower standards of behaviour than me.

    I occasionally shout at our youngest. He is less well behaved, and tries it on regulaly.  I have learned to show balance between berating him, and pleasing him. Praise encourages good behaviour. 5-6 year olds know how to press all on your buttons and wind you up.  Don’t get wound up all the time is my advice: and hopefully he’ll learn to behave better, and thrive on getting on well with you.

    Have you tried consequences, rather than shouting, and giving him the consequence in a calm firm way?

    There are also one or two good books on how to communicate effectively with your child.

    Bit of a brainstorm. Hope helpful. Stay positive!


    #8152 Report

    Hey Melly

    Firstly you recognise that your behaviour is not okay which is a really great first step.

    Nastbury’s spot on that they do know how to press our buttons!  Do you think it might be a good idea to get your son on board and have a chat with him – something like you’re sorry that you shout and you’re going to try really hard not to shout.  In return he needs to try to not XXX – maybe ignore your instructions or not annoy the dog or something that he does that winds you up.

    You could both have star charts – start with 5 stars each and lose one each time you shout, that way you’re showing that you want to work WITH him, not against him?

    Just  throwing ideas out there.  Kids do wind us up, it’s nothing personal 😉

    #8155 Report


    Hi there,

    Thank you both for your responses. It does feel reassuring to be reminded that I, we, aren’t alone. To have helpful voices.

    Yes, Nastbury, I think it probably is the age for testing us and our reactions! I am giving us more time to do things..( it’s the painfully slow putting pyjamas on that seems to do it to me!! End of day issues) and just attempting to be more present in the moment when the anger might normally bypass my brain and go straight to my mouth..!! kind of worked tonight, was better today.

    And again, the boundaries.. I do do time out, when I remember, and get myself out of the spiral. I guess it’s also about managing my expectations of him too. He’s 5 and does just need reminding about a lot of things!!! Lol.

    Khaleesi, good points. I do yell him I am sorry, that it’s about mummy being tired and it’s not about him ( but I know as children we do take this stuff personally).

    I have said I would put myself on the time out seat for my shouting..but I seem to always forget..?!  lol. How old is/are yours?

    Need to get back to reading Steve Bidolph..

    It’s just also about needing to remember my own needs -social, emotional, etc!- and find little ways to look after body, mind, spirit.

    Hope you’ve had good days and are now somewhere warm whilst this ccccooooldness does it’s thing, crikey!!

    Mellymel xx



    #8157 Report


    I have just left my husband and going through separation process. Have two boys a 4 year old and a 6 month old. I moved back to my hometown but don’t have many friends, which worries me a bit as feel like am starting all over again. But even though we are mum’s we still need to sometimes do things for ourselves too. I am recovering from liver failure and find a great mummy treat for me is alcohol free kopperberg and chocolate and I look forward to adding it into the shopping when I go. so even small treats can make a difference to lifting negative emotions, no matter what that treat might be. It doesn’t have to cost a lot either.

    #8209 Report

    I watched a really good programme on TV the other night – Violent Child, Desperate Parents (Channel 5).  Now I’m not suggesting for one moment that you guys are on a par with this (they’re pretty extreme!!!) but it gives us insight into how our behaviour impacts on our childrens’ behaviour.  How managing ours can help change theirs.

    I think I’ve read some Steve Biddulph some while ago and I think I liked it…. should I pick it back up?

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