Yelling worse than smacking!

Wall Street Journal 29 Jan 2014
Nearly every parent loses control and screams at the children now and then. But what if you do it repeatedly? Researchers suspect parents are yelling more. Parents have been conditioned to avoid spanking, so they vent their anger and frustration by shouting instead.

… Teens whose parents use “harsh verbal discipline” such as shouting or insults are more likely to have behavior problems and depression symptoms, says a recent study of 976 middle-class adolescents and their parents, published online last September and led by Ming-Te Wang, an assistant professor of psychology and education at the University of Pittsburgh.

Another study suggests yelling at children may have consequences that go beyond those of spanking. Eight-year-olds whose parents disciplined them by yelling have less satisfying relationships with romantic partners and spouses at age 23, according to a 15-year study led by Stephanie Parade, an assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior at Brown University. “Parents who yell may miss out on a chance to teach children to regulate their emotions,” she says.

Spanking also predicted less satisfying adult relationships, but the negative effects were offset when parents praised their children at other times. The negative effects of yelling weren’t erased by parental warmth, however. The negative problem-solving tactics that children learn when their parents yell may stick with them as adults, says the study, published in 2012 in Marriage & Family Review. Children also may expect others to treat them in a negative way, and unconsciously pick partners who fulfill that expectation.

“Yelling is where 90% of us do the most damage,” says Julie Ann Barnhill, a speaker and author of “She’s Gonna Blow,” a book on parental anger that has sold 135,000 copies. http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304691904579348773978001590