My Child Only Listens When I Yell(+3 Reasons)

This article will explain the reasons behind why a child may listen only when his parents yell at him. Also the article will help parents or caretakers understand how they can improve this situation so that they do not have to yell to get their child’s attention.

My Child Only Listens When I Yell – Why?

Here are reasons why your child listens to you only when you yell:

  • They Have Been Trained That Way
  • Don’t Want To Listen To You
  • Ineffective Parenting
  • Other Problems

Let us take a look at these reasons in more depth!

They Have Been Trained That Way

Yes it is likely your fault that your child does not listen to you unless you scream at the top of your lungs. Parenting is very important and one of the mistakes we make is to do it wrong – making mistakes in this field comes at a heavy and long term cost. 

Sometimes we show our kids that we actually expect them to respond when we scream. We may do it when we do not want to spend too much time getting our child’s attention or convincing them that this is the right way. So we scream or yell at them to get immediate results. This results in a number of bad things at once. Firstly, your child deems it acceptable to shout. Secondly, your child knows it is okay to ignore you when you ask them nicely because you will shout when it is really ‘needed. Lastly, your child will only listen to you if they want when you ask nicely, hence shouting will only work in situations where it is necessary.

In such a case, it is actually the fault of the parents because they have shown the child that they can scream when they need to get something done urgently. Once the child realizes that parents have another tool, they disregard other tools such as ones where parents ask the child calmly to do something. So, one of the reasons why your child listens to you only when you scream is ‘you’!

Don’t Want To Listen To You

It is possible your child simply does not want to listen to you because of some other issue bothering them that is relevant to you or your spouse. This is their way of protesting in an acceptable manner and they will try their best to maintain it unless they feel threatened; this threat could be felt when you shout or scream at them and that is when they realize they temporarily need to stop their protesting in case they don’t want to face any consequences.

As soon as they feel ‘safe’ they will begin their silent protest and avoid listening to you. What they are doing is actually calling out for your attention and that is what you need to give them! They could be upset over a number of matters such as not getting their needs fulfilled by you or upset about a prior issue they faced with you. Whatever the problem is, you need to sit down and try to get them to talk about it when they feel comfortable. Remember, patience is the key and it may take them sometime to open up.

Ineffective Parenting

You have not really put in an effort to be a good parent and this may be the reason why your child only listens to you when you scream at the top of your lungs! Training your child in the correct manner takes a lot of time and patience as well as explaining! They are indeed smart beings who need to understand what they do and why. Hence, when you ask your child to do something, it is always better to explain why. Furthermore, you need to come up with new ways of encouraging them to follow your footsteps. This is a long and patience requiring process where they need to see you as someone who does what they themself preach! They need to know they can trust you and count on you for telling them the right things.

However, kids who see the discrepancy between what their parents say and do will find it hard to follow them. They will not trust their parents’ judgement or the advice they give them because their parents do not do what they say. Hence, it is important that you as a parent be aware of how and what you teach your child because they scrutinize your every step and behaviour! Everyone knows children are honest and that is what they expect from you. If you are not what they expect or hope for you to be then they will stop listening to you!

Other Problems

Your child may be going through a number of problems you are not aware of and one of the effects of going through these problems is that they are not listening to you when they usually do. Maybe they are a victim of stress, anxiety, troubled thoughts or even depression. Why is your child disturbed? 

There could be many reasons such as bullying at school, not able to cope with school work, problems with friends or he could be suffering from a mental disorder. Whatever the reason is, he is feeling troubled or anxious or depressed and this could be one of the reasons why he is no longer able to listen to you. He may zone out and not even hear you talking to him or simply feel too upset or depressed to respond back. These are serious concerns that should be addressed immediately for the wellbeing and safety of your child.

In extreme cases, your child may be undergoing abuse at the hands of a ‘groomer’ or predator! If this is the case, and your child seems to be acting in very unusual ways, you need to talk to your child. However, before that, you must ensure your child feels safe otherwise they will not open up to you.

How To Get Your Child To Listen To You!

Getting your child to start listening again to you in the normal way is not going to be an easy task! This will require a lot of time and some clever tactics and not to mention a lot of patience.

The first thing you need to stop doing is screaming or shouting in the house at anyone. Your child needs to notice the change in you to bring some change in their own self! Secondly, you need to start asking your child to do things in a calm and requesting manner. They need to know that you really want them to do something which is why you are taking out time to ask and wait for them to do it. This won’t be easy and you may have to lecture them about how you feel and why it upsets you when they do not listen. You will also have to set an example by listening to your child when they ask you for something in a good manner – even if you don’t want to but these things call for sacrifice!

Nonetheless, it is important that you make your child realize you are putting in an effort. This is going to be an interesting exchange where you cannot lose your patience but it will be a life transforming experience where you will hopefully create the relationship with your child you always wanted to have.

It is important to realize that you may want to talk to a specialist in matters like these so that you are sure of the new plan you are about to adopt to help improve your child’s behaviour. There could be multiple reasons why your child does not listen so easily and getting to the root cause of things will definitely affect the plan you take up!

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.


This article looked at reasons why your child may listen to you only when you shout and included reasons like ineffective parenting techniques, other problems and the child simply not willing to listen to you. Furthermore, the article commented on when parents need to be concerned if the child tends to ignore them. The article also provided some brief advice to parents on how they can better train their children after they have stopped listening to them. It pointed out that clever but effective tactics would need to be used to make the child realize the importance of listening to a normal request that is not being shouted at them.

If you’ve enjoyed the ”My Child Only Listens When I Yell” mentioned above, I would recommend you to take a look at ”I Swore At My Child” too.


Was this post helpful?

[Sassy_Social_Share type="standard"]