The never-ending screaming toddler.

Desperately trying to find the truth behind the scream.

Let`s paint the picture, hey my boy how was your day. Scream. Do you want something to eat? Scream. Let’s go do something fun. Scream. Thank heavens he is in bed, 2 hours later Scream. The drop of at school, Scream. Wanna stop at the shop?!

Scrreeaaammmiiinnnngggg has become a part of our lives since the birth of my beautiful boy in 2017. I will never forget the sound of the now very familiar piercing scream thinking how on earth does THAT come out of such a small boy.

My husband and I have investigated the articles on google for assistance over the years, and although many and almost all write-ups about this tell us that this is normal. It’s a growth spurt, it’s the terrible two`s it’s the F*@_k you fours, it’s a lack of sleep, wait my best is he needs to be disciplined but I want to tell you about the real truth when your living with a screamer.

Now we all scream:

But it’s not for ice cream. Not that we are a quiet and introverted family from the start but the last four years in our house the one that screams the loudest shall be heard. Screaming has become the way of communication in our family. Everyone screams, and during a screaming episode, the screaming escalates to a dangerous level that includes bashing and throwing things as a means to get attention. We are screaming at each other; we are screaming at ourselves with the mumbling under breaths of how the hell we got here and questioning why we deserve this.

As a journey for self-diagnosis when you frantically googling for answers during the scream not many articles are quite helpful. I find articles come up that is not related to what we are going through at all. When I look at the pictures, I see children with tears pouring down their faces, but what I am dealing with there are no tears, just screams of rage.

Then I start the big question, what is he so angry about?

Look I can share a whole story of our family over the next 200 words, but the short version is that we are a pretty well put together family with no trauma or lingering emotional baggage. Well, that’s what I believe, some days I question it, is it because I didn’t give natural birth? Is it because we don’t follow a meat-free diet, is it because he goes to school and mom must work? Is it a personality or mental disorder? Heavens I can go on and on trying to discover the reason why my kid screams.

He must be disciplined:

Discipline is a crucial part of our home and family, without it we would have our two kids running our lives, however, I must add that discipline for us as parents are very different from perhaps how I was disciplined as a child. I can’t speak for my husband but for me, I simply feel that If I respect and treat my children with respect, they will grow to respect themselves and me. It’s not the easy way out, as I’m pretty sure many will say all that kid needs are good hiding.

The thing is, and who can relate to this; a hiding only escalates the situation into a damaging hurricane of chaos that will take hours to get back under control. Hours and Hours I am not even making this stuff up. Who has hours to listen to a child scream?

I don’t believe I have the discipline thing under control by any means of my images but I do know that I won’t be changing the style to the lash of the belt any time soon.

Sleep deprivation:

As I mentioned earlier, we did do the medical, this is so bad it must be cancer rush off to specialist after specialist and I can add that although it was the worst time figuring this all out, we did manage to find a wonderful pediatrician Dr. T Moodley that managed to one; calm us down and two; really invested in understanding why our boy screams. It turned out to be an iron deficiency and being on a supplement has really made a huge difference as this little guy would take it that one step further and pass out during the scream. Yes, out like a light for a few seconds.

As we have had the iron under control for a few years now, sleep has been on our radar as a possible solution to our quest for answers, but our guy doesn’t sleep either. Now on this topic, there are many useful contents out there, but it just doesn’t relate to what we are going through. Our boy does not want to sleep and will stay up after us most nights of the week. When he does fall asleep, some nights he will scream in his sleep, this they say are night terrors, and let me tell you the terror of a toddler screaming at 3 am uncontrollably in his sleep is not a pretty sight.

I am not convinced that his sleeping pattern is the reason behind the scream, but I am not yet ready to put this possibility to rest.

We buy things to avoid the scream:

Yes, you read that right, we buy him things to avoid the screaming, we bribe our child with toys so that he won’t scream at us. It really sounds bad when put down on paper like this but it’s the brutal honest fact that we have gotten ourselves into.

It’s a tactic that worked for us when our daughter was 4 and we needed to spend time with our screaming newborn, she got bought stuff to go away and play with and it worked like a charm.

Welcome to our life, we buy things for our kids to not have to deal with them. I almost wanted to put a smiley face behind that sentence to make myself feel better with some humor.

They say that we always make the right decisions at the time and although no one might understand now why we got into this habit I’m sure to tell you at the time it really works to move forward from that task for the day.

On top of all this screaming mess is a wonderful, happy, smiling boy with a wicked sense of humor. He fills our lives with way more joy than screams and we have all accepted our little Chucky just the way he is. I am blessed to have a support system in my friends and family who love him very much, some fear him and some just get screamed at.

This article was not a solution but if you have a screamer and have some advice for me on my quest for a solution, I would love to hear from you madelein@thevent.co.za

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