Having kids comes with its own share of joys and sorrows. There might be several joyous moments for you as a parent, like the birth of your child, her first word or first day at school. But one of the most unsettling issues that you can face as a parent is when your kids don’t get along.
Sibling rivalry might lead to several issues between your children and sometimes, between you and your partner as well. The good news is – your kids learn to manage their feelings and get along. The bad news is that they never reconcile and end up scarring their relationship for life.
What Is Sibling Rivalry?
Sibling rivalry is something which may start as a curiosity amidst siblings and can end as jealousy, irritation or anger.
Causes Of Sibling Rivalry:
The most predominant reasons for the birth of siblings rivalry are:
1. Excess attention given to one child, causing abandonment issues in the other.
2. Comparison between the siblings by parents or peers.
3. Child may feel relations
This often raises concern among parents and other members of the families. There is nothing to be worried about, as you just need to manage their feelings and work along with it. With some work, rivalry among siblings can be treated as a minuscule problem and dealt with easily.
[ Read: Jealousy In Kids ]
5 Effective Ways On How To Deal With Sibling Rivalry:
Listed below are a few of the most effective ways for handling sibling rivalry:
1. Make The Older Sibling Feel Important:
When friends or relatives visit to meet your newborn child, make sure the older one is also being given enough attention.
- If it is your younger child’s birthday, have presents for your older child too.
- If that is not your idea of handling the situation, then keep aside a few of your younger one’s presents for your older one to open. This way, you can make him or her feel more important.
2. Give The Older Sibling Authority:
Hire her as an assistant to help out with your younger one.
- Make her feel authoritative. This way, your older one also gets comfortable around your younger one and starts feeling more attached.
- Ask her to take care of her brother or sister for at least a few minutes every day.
- Make your child feel like a responsible sibling right from day one. But, ensure all this happens under your authoritative watch, as you do not want to leave them alone for too long.
[ Read: Moral Development In Children ]
3. Dispense Enough Time:
Just 10 minutes alone time with each of them every day does miracles to your children’s confidence and mood.
- This is to make sure they do not feel abandoned.
- Ensure they spend quality time together too. This way they get familiar with each other and fit right into the comfort zone of having each other around.
[ Read: Good Habits For Kids ]
4. Give Importance To Group Activities:
Enroll them in activities like dance, swimming, tennis, etc.
- Being at a whole new place makes them tend to stick to a more familiar person, i.e. each other.
- Even after getting back home it acts as a conversation starter, keeping them engaged.
- Group activities are not just for the kids, but the parents too. At least once a week sit together as a family and watch a movie, play games like monopoly, chess etc.
- Make them play as a team so that you as parents don’t have to take sides.
[ Read: Life Skills For Children ]
5. Kill The Comparison:
Ensure never to compare them with each other.
- If one of them is good at something and the other is not, quit comparing and understand not everyone is good at everything.
- Give them a chance to prove at another art. Help them try their hand at different activities till you find the right one.
[ Read: Child Psychology ]
This situation is a very minor problem, if detected at an early stage. But it is not always an innocent affair either. If not handled properly, it might lead to heavy psychological changes among the children involved.
On the other hand, if proper attention is provided with the necessary care, you will have a control over the issue. Precautions are always better than cure, so acting consciously will give you relief from any unstable situation among your children.
Remember, the key is to make both your children feel loved and special.
Do share your tips to handle sibling rivalry in children with other parents in the comment section below.
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