15 Easy Tips For How To Stop Yelling in a Relationship

How To Be A Good Listener in a Relationship

How To Stop Yelling in a Relationship & Start Listening Instead


First, Here is How To Stop Yelling in a Relationship


Be Quiet

This seems easy, but proves to be one of the hardest skills.

Have open ears, your duty is to be present in this moment, being a good listener; not reacting.

This can be really hard because sometimes we take things personal (it’s easy to do). 

Or, maybe what’s happening is bringing up past memories that are clouding the present situation.

Here are some words to inspire you to hold your tongue.

“Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.”
Benjamin Franklin


“Nowadays silence is looked on as odd and most of my race has forgotten the beauty of meaning much by saying little. Now tongues work all day by themselves with no help from the mind.”
Toni Morrison


“Silence is only frightening to people who are compulsively verbalizing.”
William S. Burroughs


“The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.”
Mark Twain


However, you need to frame it to make it happen, the first step is to just listen.



Deep Breaths

If you’re getting heated take a break. Try to step away before you start saying (or doing) things you’ll regret.

If you feel your shoulders tensing up or your eyebrows raising, this is a tip that you’re getting irritated. 

Try to practice healthy ways to deal with negative emotions; even if your wife yells or your husband yells…



Professional Help

Try anger management, couples therapy or another form of professional help.

Your emotional reactions could be related to post-traumatic stress disorder, low self-esteem or other underlying issues.

Getting to the root cause of perpetual anger will help your relationships and many other aspects of your life.



Consider if You’re In an Abusive Relationship

Emotional abuse and verbal abuse usually eventually progress into more aggressive behavior like physical abuse that might even turn into other family members experiencing physical violence.

All relationships have good times and difficult times but escalating aggressive tendencies are a huge red flag that will likely lead to increasingly dangerous situations.

Sometimes two people have the tendency to rub each other the wrong way. 

Whether you tend to be more aggressive, or you’re the one enduring the aggression; consider whether the relationship is worth the potential consequences. 

Couple fights do sometimes have an occasional screaming match. For some, it may not even have a negative impact on the relationship. 

For some couples yelling episodes and shouting matches are part of a healthy relationship.

There is no such thing as the “best way” to handle high stress levels.

All human beings are different but one of the most important things in a relationship is emotional safety. 

Personally, the psychological effects of being around a person yelling on a regular basis is not worth it to me. 

Call me sensitive, but I need a person who is capable of active listening and using a calm voice, even when they have some negative feelings. 

Consider if you can put up with another person’s habits or your reactions to their habits, long term.

Pay attention to warning signs, especially at the start of a relationship. 



When You’re At A Stalemate

Sometimes you can end a conversation with an agree to disagree.

Other times we need to come up with something that we agree on, but neither wants to “give in”. 

Parenting for example, should be pretty consistent; especially if you have a behavioral child. 

This forces us to come to an agreement.

But, how we parent varies DRAMATICALLY. 

This gets even more tense when we start combining families; step siblings, living with grandparents, co-parenting after divorce, etc. 

When you’re in scenarios like this, try not to blame a problem on the other person. 

Let go of having the right answer, the upper hand or taking things personal when you feel like you don’t.

When we start connecting “problems” to another person’s character (whether our own or someone else’s), someone is going to feel personally attacked & it will turn people against each other. 

Instead, envision that the problem isn’t attached to anyone.

Even if what step-dad was implementing was doing more harm than good. 

Even if you told him that’s what would happen.

It’s a problem that we’re working on & everyone’s attempts at solving it are worthy of gratitude & questioning- without it questioning anyone’s character. 

Be open to trying someone else’s solution; without them receiving backlash if it doesn’t work.


How To Stop Yelling in a Relationship


Body Language

A good listener should feel neutral.

Pay attention to your face, shoulders, your posture.

If you feel tense others will feel it too.

If you look like you’re about to interject or walk away at any moment you’re not giving off a listening vibe. 

Even if you’re not shouting; you can still come off as aggressive.

You’re also more likely to start yelling if you’re tense, so put your body and mind in a calmer place. 

Relax your shoulders, let go of the pursed lips, take a breath.


Here are some more useful tips for when you’re simply listening…




This is a very unnatural one for most people.

Reflecting what you heard them say can be short and sweet or lengthy.

The tricky part is, you should not be asking or yelling, but stating.

You don’t need to be repeating exactly what they said, but it could be what you felt they were trying to say.

Even if you have a different opinion, you can still convey that you’re listening. 

Here is an example: 

“I never get to hang out with anyone anymore. I’m always stuck at home”

Here are a couple examples of how you could reflect back

“It seems like you miss your friends”

“It sounds like you feel trapped”

This can feel a bit corny, but if done right it comes across as understanding, not condescending.



Avoid Distractions

When you have to hold back from reacting you might find yourself disengaging altogether.

You’re trying to refrain from overacting but you should still be present. 

Keep actively listening.

Avoid looking at your phone, watch, clock, other people, etc.

Don’t be staring off into space during the entire interaction.

These little things are a big deal. 

Your primary focus should be on whoever you’re listening to.



Forget About You

This is personally the hardest one for me.

I find myself always wanting to mention something about ME that relates to whatever they’ve said.

Most people do this with good intention; we’re simply trying to let the other person know that we can relate.

But it quickly shifts the focus from one person to the other, which can seem insensitive and selfish.

If your goal is to convey that you’re being a supportive person, mentioning yourself is not necessary.

I also find myself looking for a way that their actions may negatively impact me (selfish right?).

When you’re in a relationship with someone, of course their life is going to impact yours.

The adjustments in relationships aren’t always mutually beneficial so try not to have a knee jerk reaction when you realize you just got the short end of the stick.

Most of these scenarios are just temporary or can be RE-adjusted; so try to relax.

Also, you usually don’t need to have an answer IMMEDIATELY, so take the time to process things.

Don’t feel too pressured because you can come back to a conversation.

You can say something like “I’ll think about that, can we talk about it more in a couple days?”

Another thing that a lot of us do; we listen for something that might conflict with our views/beliefs. 

Most of the time, our personal beliefs/views are irrelevant to a conversation. 

Not ALWAYS… Sometimes beliefs are the problem we are trying to discuss.

More often though, we’re just listening to a partner vent about their coworkers, their best friend, or their siblings, etc. 

and then you snap back;


“I would just block him.”

“When will you just learn to stop being a pushover!”

If you are there to listen and support, you shouldn’t be requesting that they listen to you.

And the direct undermining is definitely not a good look (I’m guilty of it too).

Humans solve problems, so we just instinctually start giving out solutions that will end the problem.

(Sometimes we’re more brash than others).

You might even feel obligated or pressured to make this “issue” go away for them which gets us all worked up.

But, unless they specifically asked you for advice try to let go of that urge to give it. 


Authentic listening generates respect and trust between talker and listener



Your Opinion Doesn’t Matter

A good listener doesn’t have an opinion.

If you do have an opinion, whoever you’re listening to shouldn’t be picking up on it; especially if they’re vulnerable.

This comes back to body language too.

Many people will be turned off and avoid genuine expression if they sense they are at risk of rejection. 

A sensitive person will pick up on this before even having a conversation with you.

Revealing how opinionated you are will push others away and even inadvertently damage relationships.

For example;

You’re in the break room and can overhear people.

A coworker is casually talking about a bad experience their daughter had at a church group.

Jill, another coworker chimes in with something like “That place is basically a half way house. Plus, I heard the minister steals money from the church.” 

Jill has no idea that the church actually played a huge role in your sobriety. Jill has never been there.

He was a great minister from all of your experiences, which have been many. In fact, he’s even your cousin’s husband.

Jill has no idea & probably thinks little about what she said.

She wasn’t even talking to you, but she inadvertently revealed judgmental & snarky character.

*Note to self – Jill is not safe.

You know what’s even worse? When you’re the Jill to one of your loved ones and they now see you as an unsafe person.

Don’t assume that it’s acceptable to be an asshole just because you know their story; Not your brother’s, not your child’s, and certainly not your partner’s. 

Not every person can endure the same words as you. This doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with them.


 “High sensitivity is not a disease or a disorder. It’s not something that needs to be overcome or fixed.”

Jenn Granneman


Remember, Neither you (or your church.. JILL) hold the gold standard of anything. 


“If you aren’t humble, whatever empathy you claim is false and probably results from some arrogance or the desire to control.

But true empathy is rooted in humility and the understanding that there are many people with as much to contribute in life as you.”

Anand Mahindra



Limit Verbal AND Non-Verbals

This includes nodding, and the words like yes, yup, amen, & exactly.

Most of the time when these are used it’s because we want to show that we are listening. But, you can convey this with body language and silence.

Nodding & saying “mhm” to everything is first of all distracting.

And second, it implies that you have an opinion and a good listener doesn’t need one.



Ask For Clarity But Limit Questions

A question here and there is okay but listening isn’t an interrogation.

You shouldn’t be controlling the dialogue with questions.

There are times when as a listener, we simply don’t get it.

A question every now and then for clarity shows that you are genuinely interested, but keep them minimal.



Avoid Unsolicited Advice

Just don’t do it.

If they have specifically asked you for advice; that’s another story.

But if you really want to learn how to be a good listener in a relationship, avoid giving advice they didn’t ask for.

You may think you know the BEST answer, and maybe you do.

But listening should provide someone with the safety and freedom to process their own thoughts and feelings, not yours.

If you’re not sure what the point of them telling you is, just ask. 

“Do you want advice or just need to vent?”



Mirror Them

How To Stop Yelling in a Relationship

Sometimes this comes naturally.  

You ever have a friend approach you ecstatic about something and you immediately are too, without even knowing the reason why?

You can mirror someone’s body language, emotions, and even the amount of eye contact they’re giving.

By being attuned to their behaviors & mirroring them, you can make them feel as if you are empathetic.   

Psychology of Mirroring


Try Not to Disagree

Or dismiss, minimize, contradict, make fun, tease, etc.  

A good listener doesn’t make someone feel defensive or inferior.

If you’re struggling with how to respond you can simply thank them for sharing with you.




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