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When you tied the knot and placed that ring on your partner’s finger, you probably never envisioned that she may one day yell at you non-stop… and in public even. At least, this is what I was thinking when I saw a complete stranger yelling at her husband in public the other day.
Her tirade carried on for some time, and she made such a scene that her husband and child looked like they wished the ground would swallow them (or a mountain fall on them). The man was probably too embarrassed to say, “my wife yells at me.”
Embarrassment, anger, pain, and shame—all these feelings were clearly painted on the faces of the young teenage boy and his very gray-haired father. Did he know his wife was a yeller? I wondered if she had always behaved in this manner or if this was new learned behavior, and just how could her husband get her to stop yelling?
If you or someone you care about is in a marriage where yelling and screaming is par for the course, this article is for you as I explain the steps you can take to make your wife stop screaming at you.
Is Yelling in a Marriage Normal?
We all raise our voices at times. Life happens; you feel frustrated, upset, angry, passionate, and just plain fed up with stuff. As a result, you lose the last restraint and let rip with your tongue like a viper spewing poison.
You yell. You scream, and you become verbally abusive and ugly.
Is this normal? Should people yell and scream at each other? In simple terms: No.
When you yell or scream at someone (or if someone does it to you), you (or they) have lost all respect at that moment. A marriage is supposed to be a safe space where you are supported and respected by your partner. When that partner then yells at you, it breaks down the foundations of your “I do.”
So, while people yell—we are human, after all—it’s not acceptable behavior when it becomes the norm in a marriage or serious relationship.
Why Does My Wife Yell at Me?
In a loving relationship, why would your wife yell at you? Surely, she’s supposed to care enough not to want to hurt your feelings. Is she reciprocating because you are yelling at her? Perhaps you haven’t yelled at all, but she’s screaming like a banshee at any and every little thing.
So, why is she yelling?
Possible reasons for may include:
Of course, there could be legitimate reasons why your wife is yelling at you. And if you are self-aware, you can identify where things have gone wrong and why your partner yells at you:
Negative Effects of Being Yelled at by Someone You Are Married to
Marriage is a shared space where you should be able to let your vulnerable side out. When your partner yells at you, it violates that trust. As a result, you stop trusting others, avoid intimacy and vulnerability with others, and become emotionally closed off.
Yelling is a type of abuse, and unfortunately, abuse is often contagious. Your partner yells at you, which makes you yell at your children, who then begin yelling at their friends or teachers. The vicious cycle continues.
Getting yelled at by your boss is traumatizing enough, but it’s far less devastating than having your wife or partner yell at you. A boss or colleague who yells at you does so in a certain capacity of your life—your work.
Mentally, you understand that your job isn’t all of who you are. You are more than just a worker. The damage is then less severe.
When your wife yells at you, she is yelling at you within your intimate relationship. Your partnership with your wife is a huge aspect of your sense of self.
It’s much harder to keep yourself separated from the disrespect and violence of being yelled at by the person you choose to let into your personal space—your wife.
With strangers or your boss yelling at you, it’s easier to quit your job or walk away than it is to leave a dedicated relationship with your wife over shouting.
Impact of Yelling in Front of an Audience
Yelling rarely happens in private. What about the audience who witnessed the whole incident? While you may want to shout, “Help, my wife yells at me,” your children or family that witness the yelling will also be traumatized and suffer negative consequences.
Having yelling behavior modeled by the person you look up to (your mother or your wife) will lead to severe mental health damage.
Suffering the public humiliation of being yelled at can lead to serious behavioral abnormalities, poor mental development, and other issues such as shyness, lack of confidence, and isolation.
8 Ways to Help Your Wife Stop Yelling at You
Nobody would willingly marry someone who shouts non-stop or at them in public, so why do some men end up with a wife who yells at them? Most often, the wife wasn’t someone who yelled all the time or in public.
Something shifted and a terrible change happened in the marriage that led to the yelling.
Here are a few ways to stop your wife from becoming a yeller and how to help your yelling wife to stop.
Tip 1. Stop the Attention
Yelling is often the result of someone who wants to get attention and be seen. By yelling, a wife uses a negative strategy to get a response. Don’t react or give her a reward for her negative behavior if there’s no reason for it.
When she yells at you, don’t argue or yell back. Instead, keep your cool, remain quiet, and (if there’s no reason to her screaming) carry on as if nothing happened. Once she calms down and stops shouting, you can respond to her and take the necessary action to help her or meet her needs.
Like a puppy that yelps for attention (and then yelps more when it gets the attention), your wife’s yelling may be a subconscious habit that has developed since she gets her way when she shouts. Stop rewarding the shouting or escalating things by yelling back.
Additionally, if your children are present and both their parents are yelling, it will teach them to yell too. Break the cycle.
Tip 2. Listen to Her and Paraphrase
Chances are that your wife is desperate for you to actually hear her (there’s a difference between hearing and listening). So when she starts yelling, take a moment to remove your feelings from the situation, listen, and hear her words. What is she actually saying?
Perhaps she’s so desperate that she yells out of fear or anger. What can you do to comfort her? When you are there for her, she will stop yelling.
Tip 3. Take a Time Out for Your Sake
There’s a saying that when respect is no longer served at the table, you should get up and leave. Taking time out and stepping away from an argument isn’t losing; it’s being responsible and mature enough to not be a part of an argument or leaving to make it clear you won’t be drawn into one.
Use the time away to plan how you will respond instead of reacting to her yelling.
Tip 4. Figure out Why She’s Yelling
To solve a problem, you need to first own it. Acknowledge your wife by asking yourself why she is yelling and then consider what you can do for that specific yelling. No simple solution applies to all causes of yelling—you need to know the why before you can stop the yelling.
When she’s angry with you, talk calmly about what you did or what angered her.
When she yells because she’s afraid, give her reassurance that you are there for her.
If she yells because she’s frustrated, listen quietly to her, repeat what she said to show you understand, and be open to further communication. Don’t try to fix everything for her.
Despite what your instinct tells you, your wife doesn’t need you to be the dashing hero who saves her day. Instead, she wants you to listen, hear her, and simply give her a soft ear to confide in when she’s overwhelmed.
Tip 5. Find Her Triggers and Diffuse Them
Your wife doesn’t just get up in the morning and yell for no reason. Something sets her off. Perhaps it’s the state of the kitchen because you made a midnight snack and didn’t clean after yourself, or maybe she had a nightmare and woke up feeling afraid. Anything can be a trigger.
Start observing when she yells and focus on what happened just before she yelled. This is her trigger. It may help to keep a journal with these triggers written down. Soon, you’ll be able to create a list of triggers and finally find out what lies at the heart of her triggers. This is the fuse, and you can help her diffuse it.
Address the issue that really sets her off. Perhaps the yelling about a dirty kitchen or nightmares is actually about her not feeling appreciated. Show her that you can be counted on and that you see and hear her.
Tip 6. Do Something Special for Her
Don’t wait until she’s had another yelling session for this step, but rather take the initiative and do something special for her to show and assure her that you love her. She knows deep inside that she’s the one in the wrong for yelling, but she also probably feels very unloved and insecure.
Shake that mistaken belief and do something special for her. If you can, do something small every day to show her you love her. Whether you make her a cup of tea before heading to work or you leave a flower on her vehicle’s seat, find something that will make her realize she’s not alone.
Tip 7. Lighten Her Load
When was the last time you did something nice for your wife? Do you simply assume she does her share of things and you do yours? Perhaps she doesn’t feel the division of labor in your relationship is fair and is secretly struggling with her load.
A partnership can’t always be 50/50 all the time. Sometimes you have to carry a little more of the load. Try doing things that she normally does (without waiting for her to ask) to help lighten her load.
Once the stress begins to drop, you may be surprised that she starts yelling less than before.
Tip 8. Consider Counseling
Your wife may be yelling because of deeper issues such as the way she was raised and learned behavior. These are complicated challenges that may require the help of a trained counselor or psychologist to help resolve.
If your wife can learn the skills to address her own inner trauma, she will be more amicable and open to discussions instead of fighting and yelling. Counseling can give your partner the skills and knowledge to overcome the challenges of their past and the trauma they have experienced.
After all, she doesn’t want to bleed on those who didn’t cut her.
Final Thoughts on My Wife Yells at Me
Your wife yelling at you can be an exceptionally traumatizing experience. I’m sure that the man in the vehicle with his shouting wife felt as if his heart was being ripped out.
Perhaps he did do something that upset her, but shouting and being yelled at will only harm their relationship. Sadly, their child may grow up to be a man who shouts at his partner.
The effects of a wife who shouts at her husband or any partner who shouts at their significant other is devastating to all involved. It’s important to treat yelling as a serious matter and take steps to stop this negative and unproductive behavior by acknowledging the underlying cause and fixing the issues that provoke yelling.
Abuse doesn’t discriminate. Learn more about men who shout at their partners in our guide on what to do when your husband yells at you.