Speaking quietly to people who are supposed to be taking direction from you in some fashion is just plain stupid. The obvious people, of course, are your children. I am Italian and my kids are half such, so yelling should not be so foreign to them. It’s in the DNA and New York and Italian just doubles that helix. I don’t just trot it out for sport because it is so much fun to pop a forehead vein every now and then or twist my vocal chords into spaghetti.
Why the heck then is it always MY fault when I yell and why are the offspring-me included back in the day- so horrified when it happens. As if they had absolutely no part in the eruption whatsoever. My two will act like someone who pulls the pin on a grenade and then looks on in astonishment and wonder as things go boom around them.
I don’t start out yelling any request. Not a one. The decibel level increases in direct proportion to the decibel decrease in their ears. When they turn stone deaf to a request to do something after being asked 32 times in a normal voice well then I resort to busting through with every vocal chord I got. It’s not pretty. I know that. But can one really see no cause and effect to my screaming? Just effect? Please pick up your clothes. Please don’t leave 95 dishes on the counter filled with food every night so that the ant farm we now own thrives. Please stop having 42 kids sleep over for days with no parent, food or monetary contribution in sight. Please stop mouthing off to me. Please find a wife and get married and move out. Please get a driver’s license. You are 18 already after all. Please stop driving without a license. You are 15 after all. It never seems to end. Not one, not one task is ever done on my timeline with them. Not a one. If the house was burning and I asked them to call 911- wait that could never happen, they do not know how to speak in the device called a phone- they would text FIRE to 911. At that rate 911 could be the number for voting for contestant number 9 on American Idol and I am reasonably sure they wouldn’t stop singing to put out this fire. No, it would be whenever they so please, just one more video game, or text or Snappy Chatting. But actually get up and say ‘sure Mom’ no problem? Never have those words escaped their lips.
So I yell. That’s right. Ignore me long enough and I just get louder and louder and louder just like this big inflatable noise balloon. You want peace and quiet? Do as I ask once in a while. Do it when I need it done. Do it well. Leaving half the garbage in the house on garbage night is not quite a job well done. Mowing the lawn when it begins to look like a Field of Nightmares is not a job done timely. Leaving your clean clothes out so long on your dresser or chair that they take on the appearance of worn clothing is just not efficient use of my detergent. You want serenity? Then change the things you can, like my yelling, by doing as I ask once in a while.
Now let’s examine the psychology of it all, shall we? Stop calling me bipolar. It is getting you nowhere. Just because I don’t spend all my life using a June Cleaver voice with you and have to switch to a screaming Mimi once in awhile does not make me bipolar. Want to know why? Because YOU caused the change, not me. Yes, you, with your sassy mouth and tuned out ears to anything I ask. So in effect, if you think I am bipolar because I am neither nice to you all the time nor screaming my head off all the time, so be it. You are a carrier. You want more evenness and more of that polite Canadian demeanor? No, that’s not right. Not possible for me ever. But you get the picture. So don’t you dare manipulate me by saying I am bipolar because I start out nicely asking you to do something or behave a certain way or prevent you from doing something you shouldn’t and then turn into the bride of Frankenstein when you ignore, refuse or disobey. Sorry, my kiddies, that one is on you. You control the Mom mouth more than you know. So start using your powers for good and not evil and peace will reign once more. I love you two and you know that. I hope my pen is mightier than your swords and that you get the message here that I can’t convey there.