The funny side of anger

With today’s post, I’m officially halfway through the 31 day series on anger.  We’ve earned a break.  So today I’m sharing the funny side of anger.

My personal journey to stop yelling and be less angry hasn’t happened in a vacuum.  That would have been so much less humiliating.  Instead, I’ve struggled with this in full view of my kids.

Remember my yelling journal?

At first, I didn’t tell my kids.  But it’s hard to keep it a secret when I whip the thing out and write in front of them.

It’s harder to keep it a secret when I yell

Yes, I’m going to have to write this down and I’m angry about it!

(By the time I got downstairs, my husband had wiped the bemused grin off his face, but he confessed later that my statement made him laugh. You can read the whole ugly story if you want to.)

the funny side of anger

At this point, my kids both know what’s up.  Each of them has their own approach to the whole thing.

A (not so) cute approach:

My younger son is a black and white rule following kind of guy.  He’s only in second grade, so I figure he still has time to develop a healthy rebellious streak.  There is nothing sneaky about this kid.  If he decides to disobey, he’ll tell you so to your face.

It’s like hitting a brick wall.

Yelling at him doesn’t work, but it happens anyway.  In part, because I get so frustrated with him that I just don’t know what else to do.

Me: YOU NEED TO DO THIS RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Him:  (smiling sweetly AND using the sing-song voice)  Mommyyyy….. you need to write this down…… remember????

Yes. I stopped yelling at him.  The silence was instant.

It was broken about three seconds later with the sounds of my husband trying to stifle a laugh.  The man actually snorted.  He had the nerve to SNORT.  In. My. Kitchen.

The world held its breath.  At least… my family did.  I wanted to yell even louder.  Instead, I chase my son around the kitchen and gave him a hug. The family exhaled and my husband silently gave me a high five.

a person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs

An obtuse approach:

(Every math geek and pun loving reader should give an appreciative sigh right about now.  Acute and Obtuse. See what I did there?)

My older son is a bit more free thinking.  He’s also oblivious to a LOT of what goes on around him.  He’s in 4th grade, I figure I have a good ten years more of this before he starts to pay attention to life.  He’s just that kid.

No matter how many times I’ve told them not to, Watty still likes to read over my shoulder when I’m on my phone.  It drives me nuts.  It’s bad manners.  It invades my privacy.  To be perfectly frank, nothing ruins a good Candy Crush buzz like a small voice telling you you’ve done it wrong.

Watty crushed my buzz.  On top of that, he startled the snot out of me when he did so.  (What is it about that child? He’s always startling me?)  So I yelled at him.  I reminded him NOT to read over my shoulder.

Then I pulled out my yelling journal and started to write.  I realized my son was STILL reading over my shoulder.

Me: Do you remember what this is?

Him: (looking over my shoulder and reading) I yelled today because…. mommy, your handwriting is HORRIBLE.

(I journal in my very worst handwriting on purpose.  It makes it much less likely anyone else will read it.)

I closed the book.

Me: Think.

He continued to look over my shoulder and was trying to read the brand name of the notebook.

a well developed sense of humor is the pole that adds balance to your steps

Younger son has his hands over his ears at this point.

I didn’t yell.  I didn’t have to.  My husband grabbed the poor boy and drug him out of the room.  It happened so fast I think they blurred.  They had a brief discussion about how important it is NOT to poke mommy with a stick.

(Can I just say how much I love that man. My husband rocks.)

I took a few minutes to flip through three weeks worth of yelling journal entries.  I realized maybe my oldest son isn’t quite as obtuse as I thought.  He is a MASTER at poking me with a stick.  He can get me off track of any list of chores and into full yelling mode faster than any other family member.

(I recall my older brother had a similar talent with my mom. hmm…)


Anger has a funny side.

It’s all in how you look at it.

You just have to be willing to look.

Willingness to laugh at yourself is a big help.

a sense of humor is needed armor

I have a challenge for you.

(are you ready?)

Find the funny side of anger.

Go grab your yelling journal.  Flip through the pages.  I’ll bet there’s at least ONE thing in there that is funny now that you’ve gained a little perspective.  While you’re at it, celebrate your small victories.

Share one in the comments (keep it clean please).

Here’s a few gems from my journal to get things started:


I can’t stand one more round of Scooby Doo Sing A Long… particularly in the dog voice.

This has NOTHING in common with my prayer life.  How dare I think so….. …. nevermind.

Tonight, I actually yelled “bubble bubble bubble bubble” to my kids and then broke out laughing.

Yes.  I use the phrase “hot snot”  out loud as an actual cuss.  I have no idea why.  I blogged the whole sad story.

My kids sing to TV theme songs in the car.  They’re watching a DVD with headphone on.  I’m listening to the world worst karaoke.  I think they do it on purpose.

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Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

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  1. There have been plenty of times that I had to laugh at some of the things that happens in the midst of me being angry. My oldest son has a strong tendency to look for any loop hole in which he can make an angry situation funny. He’s learned that if he can someone laughing then the tension is gone for all of us instantly.
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