Conflict can be difficult to deal with – especially when you are in conflict with your parents. The emotional elements and the unequal balance of power can make arguing with your parents particularly frustrating. If you're not careful, you can end up yelling at your parents. This is counterproductive in just about all conflictual situations that involve your parents. Yelling will only make the situation worse, perhaps causing them to hold fast to their position or to take actions that they wouldn't have taken if the anger level hadn't been heightened by your yelling.
Yelling Turns Up the Volume
There's nothing inherently wrong with conflict. It is a natural part of life and an initiator of change -- both positive and negative. That is what makes how you handle conflict so important, especially with long-term relationships, such as those in your family. When there is conflict between you and people that you are close to, like your family or best friend, there is often an emotional element too. With conflict in which the power – who decides or has the final say – is unequal, such as with parents, teachers or an employer, there can be frustration, even fear. Giving in to emotions or frustration, and yelling can increase the intensity of conflict and that is counterproductive. If you feel your control slipping, don't turn up the volume. Stop and wait until you've calmed down to continue.
It's Too Loud to Listen
The louder the volume, the more yelling there is, the less people listen to the actual content of what is being said. Look at the pattern of a conflict that has escalated from speaking to yelling. There's interrupting and shouting over each other, with neither party actually hearing or even trying to listen to what the other has to say. Both sides are engaged in reacting, and do not consider what is said and making a thoughtful response to those words. If you want your parents to listen to what you are saying and think about your point of view, do not yell.
You Lose Sight of Your Goal
When trying to resolve a conflict, you have to keep your goal and the best way to get to it in mind. If you give into emotions, like anger, or let frustration overwhelm you and start yelling, you've lost focus. Instead of discussing and negotiating the issue that is important to you, your parents are likely to shift the discussion to your yelling. If your parents said no to something you wanted because they weren't sure you were mature enough or that they could trust your judgment enough, you losing your temper and yelling pretty much proves their point. You're better off staying calm and trying to negotiate, accepting no for now if it has to be, but asking what the requirements are to earn a yes. Compromise and acceptance, with respectful communication, will keep you on the path toward your goal.
It May Cost More Than It's Worth
Every once in a while, you may be able to wear your parents down with yelling and get what you want. However, it is not a win without cost. It may even be what is referred to as a Pyrrhic victory, a win that you give up or lose so much in attaining it that it isn't really worth having. When conflict gets out of control to the point of yelling, hurtful and cruel things can be said. Long-term relationships, like those you have with your parents and siblings today and perhaps may have later on with a spouse and your own children, can be seriously damaged by words said in anger. It takes maturity to realize that sometimes winning the fight isn't worth the damage you do to the relationship in the process.
- Buccina Studios/Photodisc/Getty Images