How do I settle sibling rivalry?

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  1. retellect profile image74
    retellectposted 7 years ago

    How do I settle sibling rivalry?

  2. ~Christina profile image61
    ~Christinaposted 7 years ago

    Interesting - I just read an article on this topic in Thriving Family magazine.  ( … along.aspx ) ... the two key points I walked away with were:

    1.  Consider your example.  As in, what example are your kids seeing in your relationship with your spouse?  Are you respectful of one another?  Do you fight fair?  Do you praise your spouse's strengths and celebrate your differences?

    2.  Focus on Strengths.  Point out the positives in your kids, especially in front of the other(s).  Also, and this hit home for me, make sure to take the time to tell your kids the positive and great attributes you see in them.  Unfortunately, I think all too often we get into a cycle of nagging our kids and pointing out what they are doing wrong, and we forget to seek opportunities to point out what they are doing right.  When we do this, we help them to see the positives in each other - which will lead to better sibling relationships.

  3. Jennifer Mullett profile image59
    Jennifer Mullettposted 7 years ago

    Hi, I just finished reading this awesome book on the subject, its called Siblings Without Rivalry by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish. It had lots of good tips!

  4. kaurina profile image60
    kaurinaposted 7 years ago

    I'd have to agree with the other two comments. Good info.
    Sibling rivalry can send parents bonkers.
    Another point I'd like to add, is that you can't really "settle" the rivalry. As in, if you find yourself being in the judge role or the mediator role, its probably not going to end well no matter what you say or do.

    If your kids and you have developed a habit of dragging you into the fight, then it's a good idea to have a discussion at a calm time when they're not at it and lay down some new guidelines.

    Before you do that, you need to take a new perspective. Take a step back, and acknowledge that generally speaking, sibling rivalry to a certain extent has benefits. Kids learn negotiation skills. They also learn that people can hurl insults at them and they don't need to take it personally. It toughens them up.

    But you want to have some rules so that you can have some peace. Decide what it is you want and don't want, and let them argue it out according to those guidelines. For example, some parents say you can argue as long as there is no name calling, foul language, or physical violence. Also, they might have to go to another room away from where you are so it doesn't bother you.

    Also, while you're having your calm discussion about guidelines, you can mention that you trust that your kids are smart and creative and are able to come up with solutions to problems so that all the parties can be happy. Role play a couple of common scenarios to brainstorm possible solutions while they're not in the heat of the moment.  Trust that they can figure it out themselves.

    So that when they do have an argument, you can excuse yourself from being the mediator by reminding them that you know they are smart enough to come up with a happy solution.

    Sometimes, they may be more motivated to come up with a happy solution if there is something to be lost or gained. For example, kids are arguing about who chooses the TV show. "You chose the last show." "You always get to choose." Yadda yadda yadda.
    "Ok, kids. I know you can come up with a happy solution for everybody. The TV is going off until you can all resolve this."

    Immediately the solutions are forthcoming.

    Hope that helps :>


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