Things got a little heated in the Mommyish offices today. While discussing an upcoming interview about helping parents learn to control their anger, Lindsay Cross and Eve Vawter found themselves debating whether there’s any excuse, or any cure, for a parent who lets stress and frustration lead to “blowing your stack” with your kids.
Lindsay argues that losing your temper is a natural occurrence that sometimes results from serious issues, and that we should help parents struggling through these tough times. Eve believes that there’s just no excuse for taking out your stress on your kids. Not to mention, a lot of this “stress” is man-made. She makes the point that we shouldn’t encourage parents to indulge in it.
Lindsay: Oh hey, I have a psychiatrist who wants to do an interview about what parents should do to deal with their anger so that they don’t blow up at their kids. Anyone have questions or anything?
Eve: Yeah, what parents blow up at their kids? What sort of assholes are these? I have never blown up at my kids, ever. Mayhaps my kids are boring though
Koa: I’d be curious to know how many parents snap at their kids who technically “know better”? Who have the education and what not but are just overwhelmed?
Lindsay: I mean, I’ve lost my temper before…
Eve: Overwhelmed is so stupid. People freak out over stupid stuff, who cares? Your kid throws food? Well, they shouldn’t, but then you just take the food away. Your kid hits someone at the playground? Take them home, explain we don’t hit. I have alllll the answers.
Lindsay: I think that’s a little unfair. It’s easy to be so calm about it when you’re just speaking about it or writing about it. It’s harder in real life when you’re stressed or tired or have a million things going on.
Eve: Kids are easy, Teenagers are hard.
Lindsay: Realistically, life can be overwhelming. And some people do lose their tempers and yell at their kids and then regret it later.
Eve: But why be stressed? See, that’s the absurdity of it. People have these dumb expectations. You are a lady lawyer who has a giant meeting and your 3-year-old wants to wear a princess dress and you are running late! Who cares? Let her wear the dress! Almost any situation is not that big of a deal.
Lindsay: But seriously? You’re saying that everyone should just stop being stressed… like that’s the easiest thing on the planet. That’s just not realistic at all.
Eve: IT IS!
Lindsay: It’s not. And pretending like it should be makes it harder for people to actually get help if they have a hard time managing their stress because you just brush off their concerns and belittle their feelings