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Ways to Prevent and Solutions for Sibling Rivalry
Kids, especially younger ones, fight against everything and anything. As parents, sometimes it’s almost impossible to keep the peace in the house. As a mother, I have learned several ways to avoid sibling rivalry in my children along the way. Although you can prevent sibling rivalry, there will come a time that your children will end up fighting; that is why I also included some solutions for sibling rivalry when your children end up fighting more than usual.
Ways to Prevent Sibling Rivalry:
Children fight; that is always a given, but several ways prevent that from happening too often. From years of experience being a parent and learning from friends and family along the way, I have listed some ways to prevent sibling rivalry, which will hopefully help you.
Never compare your children, especially in front of each other
Nobody likes to get compared to another. Especially if you mention flaws, it is essential to avoid pointing out the differences between your children, especially in front of them.
Comparing your children to each other might become a significant problem in the future since some children might view the comparison between them and their siblings as you thinking that they are not good enough or that their sibling is better than them.
Never discipline your child in front of each other
One other way to prevent sibling rivalry is to avoid disciplining your child before their brother or sister. Disciplining your child in front of each other might give them an impression that it is okay for them to reprimand their sibling. Especially in the case where you are reprimanding your younger child in front of his elder sibling.
Become Better Role Models
As the saying goes, kids are the reflection of their parents. It is crucial to avoid shouting or behavior that your children might view as okay behavior whenever you have a problem with your spouse. Reinforce to your children the importance of peaceful discussion and ensure that they understand.
Solutions for Sibling Rivalry:
As much as we want our children never to fight, that is something we can never really avoid. That is why it is essential to know the solutions for sibling rivalry that you can use whenever the need arises.
Avoid getting involved when your children are fighting
I know it is hard to avoid meddling in your children’s fights, but that is vital if you want to help prevent sibling rivalry. Whenever one of your children goes to you and tells you about how their sibling is being mean or asking you to tell your other child to stop doing something, avoid interfering. The best way to handle this is to ask your children to discuss their problems with you listening. Avoid phrasing your statements in the declarative. Instead, try inquisitively posing your comments.
By letting them fix their problem independently with your guidance, they will not end up having to rat on each other.
However, if the fights are getting more brutal, stepping in is a must. Always keep in mind, though, that you should only guide your children and not direct their actions.
Pinpoint the cause of the Fight
Whenever your children end up fighting, it is essential to learn the reason for the commotion. Ask them how the fighting arose while remaining impartial. Remember to ask them to speak calmly and let them each have time to talk freely.
If one of your children speaks over their sibling, ask them to let their sibling finish talking first kindly. By doing this, you can know each of their sides better.
Guide your children to identify the problem on their own
Now that you know the main cause of their fight, you can ask them questions that will help them solve the main reason for their fighting.
For example, ask each of your children their opinion on how the fight started. Remember to reinforce that talking over their sibling is not allowed and that everyone should talk calmly.
Ask your children to provide solutions of their own
After identifying the leading cause of their fight, you can now ask your children to offer their solution to their problem. Asking them to provide solutions of their own will help them learn to solve problems without your help, and the solution they would offer would become better for them since they were the ones who provided it on their own.
Suggest Solutions to your Children to solve the problem
If your children ask you to help them solve their problems, offer solutions to them. However, always remind them that your suggestions are just that – suggestions. The ones who would truly come up with the solution would be them.
Give your children attention
Sometimes, children end up fighting because they think that their sibling gets more attention from their parents. To prevent that, ensure that you equally give attention to your children. Equality does not necessarily mean you should dedicate a fixed amount each time. By listening to your children, and knowing their passions, and supporting them is enough.
Try to get Professional Help
When your children have been fighting for more times than you can count, and it is starting to become a major family problem, seeking professional help might be the best solution for you.
Signs to know that you Need to Seek Professional Help:
- When it is damaging to the well-being of any of your children
- When the fighting might be a result of other concerns, such as those related to mental health problems
- When it becomes a family problem and not only that of your children
I hope you have gained some new information on how to handle your children fighting each other. Do keep in mind that the ways to prevent sibling rivalry and solutions for sibling rivalry mentioned above should serve merely as a guide to help you handle your childrens’ fighting.
Always remember that you know your children best. There might be hundreds of guides out there to help you prevent your children from fighting, but they lack the personal knowledge you have regarding your children. Take every piece of advice with a grain of salt, and always remember to cherish every moment you have with your family.