Daddy's Short Fuse is Damaging the Kids
December 11, 2012
Daddy's Short Fuse is Damaging the Kids

Hi, I'm Dr. Laura Schlessinger and welcome to our YouTube channel.  These are two of my five kids and only one has two legs [Laughs] and these are the others.  This is Butch [points to dog with blue collar] and that's Babe [points to dog with red collar].  And this is from Amy:

"My husband is a loving spouse, and an attentive, loving father. He has severe ADHD, but won't take any meds because of what he's read about long term effects of the drugs. He gets easily over-stimulated in our home due to our five kids, ages 3 to 9, and the chaos and clutter they produce no matter how I try to keep a clean home and teach the kids to clean up after themselves.

He frequently snaps at the kids, and yells at them when they break rules or frustrate him. I've repeatedly asked him not to yell, but he feels they won't remember the house rules unless he puts a punctuation mark on the telling of them. I feel so badly for the kids, that I am losing respect for my husband.

I see the kids yelling out of frustration, and don't want them to think daddy's yelling is an acceptable response to frustration. How do I honor my husband, and teach the kids to respect him while he is so impatient? And how do I convince my husband of the damage he is causing with his short fuse?"

Ok, it's your moral obligation as mom to make sure your children aren't hurt by anybody...ANYBODY, regardless of their job description, which in this case is "dad."  Dad is out of control.  Dad does not appreciate he's out of control.  Dad thinks what dad is doing, thinking, saying, feeling is normal - it isn't.  There are a couple of things that are useful in a situation like this and one is working with a therapist who is going to teach him how to regain some control.

For example, I would start out by having one of those (what do they call them?) "nanny cams" and film him misbehaving with the children.  Let him see and feel what it looks like to have him being out of control over a simple thing out of place or the kids being, I don't know, noisy like kids are.  That often brings to that person the realization that, "Oh, I'm out of control."  Because in their own minds, it's normal.  Somehow seeing it visually in front of them makes a difference.  That's part one.  Hopefully that will motivate him. 

Part two is...the minute he feels like yelling (because he has that rationale that "they will not listen, they will not hear me if I do not yell")...  The minute he catches himself yelling, there ought to be some like  post-hypnotic suggestion done by a really good hypnotherapist (this is something I would do regularly when I was in private practice), that the minute he would feel that feeling of frustration and wanting to control the situation, there'd be something (whatever) that he could do.

To get one woman to fly on an airplane, every time she got anxious I had her do this [holds one finger in the air].  And so I sat behind her on the plane, watching this [holding one finger up] happen a lot of times for the first hour and then rarely, because a person gains a sense of relaxation when they realize they can control it.  So those are the steps you take. 

Now, an admonition...and this is coming from Mother Laura and you better listen real hard because I don't want to be yelling and I don't have ADHD, ok?  Here it is: you must protect your children.  This yelling and screaming, and coming down hard on every little issue is child abuse; psychological child abuse.  He is either to work on getting this together with these steps that I've suggested, or tell him to go move in with his mother until he does something about his behavior.

I'm Dr. Laura Schlessinger and that's Babe [dog comes up the stairs].  And we'll see you next time on the Dr. Laura YouTube channel. 

[Pets Babe and asks, "What are you looking for?"]  She likes to eat plants.



Posted by Staff at 2:37 PM