When it comes to sibling rivalry do you find yourself pulling out your hair? Parents can help deal with sibling rivalry with these simple steps. Check them out here!
How Parents Can Help Deal with sibling rivalry
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Sometimes I wonder if my kids literally hate each other. (I know they don’t but still.) There are times where every day we are constantly bombarded with comments like, “you’re dumb.” “you are so slow.” “you can’t hit the ball.” “I can’t believe you died on Forte Night. I am so much better than you.” The sibling rivalry is pretty intense at times. As a mom, I have tried different strategies to fight it. I have tried the over-involved side, the yelling at them side, and even the getting along shirt. I would have to say that none of these methods proved to be successful.
But over the years of dealing with sibling rivalries, I have learned some tips that have helped our family deal with sibling rivalry.
So, How Can Parents Help Deal With Sibling Rivalry? Here are some tips to help!
The first thing we need to do as parents is stop comparing our kids. Each child is unique and different. They each have different strengths as well as weaknesses. When we as parents say innocent things like Colby read when he was 4, but Chase didn’t until he was 6. This is a true statement, but what it does is it sparks competition between them. Also, it might make one child not feel as good or as smart as the other. So it would do us good to stop the comparison in front of our kids.
Spend Time One on One Time With the Kids
As a mom we are busy! It is difficult to spend time with each child individually, but your kids need you to! Did you know that most sibling rivalries occur because of the attention they receive from mom or dad? You don’t have to spend equal time with each child, but you need to spend time with them. This allows each child to know that they are important! If you are short on time check out these ideas to spend time with your kids here!
Don’t Get Involved
Every time I involve myself in a sibling rivalry it just gets worse. Why is that? Well, they begin to escalate the sibling rivalry to get each other in trouble. So therefore as moms, we need to avoid their scuffles at all costs. Let them attempt to work it out on their own.
Sure there might be times that require you to step in, but for the most part, they can solve the problem on their own. By allowing them to work out their sibling rivalry on their own they are learning problem-solving skills. But, with that being said there are times that you need to step in. If there is a safety concern step in immediately, but try not to take sides. This will escalate the sibling rivalry even more.
Punishment and Consequences
It is so easy in the heat of the moment to discipline your kids in front of other family members. In my mind, I sometimes think, “well if everyone sees the consequence then certainly no one else will do it.” While this is a good thought, it is not quite accurate.
One of the ways to stop sibling rivalries is to keep all punishments in private. No one needs to see it. This just leads to teasing and picking on and more sibling rivalries.
When kids get in trouble you need to issue the same consequence. You can’t say, “okay you guys aren’t getting along so Sally go find something to do while Johnny keeps playing.” You are on the verge of a huge sibling rivalry at this point because obviously, you love Johnny more than Sally. When consequences are needed the same punishment needs to be given to everyone involved.
Choose Your Battles
Let’s face it… Kids are not always going to get along. Your kids will want to always drag you into the middle and make you pick a side. Don’t let them. Choose your battles wisely. If someone is going to get hurt then, of course, stop them, but let them figure it out. Let the small things go.
So often as parents we hear the first scream and are running in there to see what is happening. Well, we have just taught our kids that with every scream we will come and solve their problem. Kids need to stand on their own two feet. As they do this and as you stay out of all the battles it will help sibling rivalries decrease.
How to deal with sibling rivalry as parents is hard! So often I wonder why kids fight and compare each other to one another, but it is part of who they are. The more we involve ourselves the more we will see competition. As we remove ourselves from the sibling rivalry we will start to see a decrease in arguing because our kids aren’t getting the attention they want from it.
What do you do to deal with Sibling Rivalry Share with us in the comments!
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Michele is a Family Life Educator with her degree in marriage and family studies. She is a mom to 5 kids and loves helping others strengthen their families! When she is not blogging she is spending time with her family and running around drinking Diet Coke trying to get everything done!