An interesting observation: despite my failings, I do yell less. My children, however, now yell more.
I was told before starting this experiment that my children might become more sensitive. It was explained to me that if I gave them room to be themselves, free from the fear of being yelled at, they would go through a phase where they would be more dramatic, have more meltdowns and throw more tantrums.
I am now confirming this.
I asked a friend why this was and she said it was simply them exploring boundaries. She said changes in relationships often result in a pendulum effect: with roles being reversed back and forth, swinging from one extreme to the other, with the pendulum eventually coming to a peaceful rest in the middle.
Oddly, my children throwing tantrums does not push any of my buttons. I'm ok with dramatics, meltdowns and tantrums. I can handle those. It's constant and unrelenting whining or crying that really bothers me.
Today was a good day. I'm really tired and I think I'm getting sick, but today I stayed cheerful and calm.