How to Deal with Fighting Siblings? (Proven Ways)
I have seen many parents asking about why do brothers and sisters fight so much with each other!! There are other couples complaining that my 2 and 4 year old fight all the time!!! These are just few examples. If you are facing the same situation and do not understand how to deal with fighting siblings, then continue reading below for our tried and tested solutions.
A healthy relationship between the parents and children stands on two grounds. One is that the parents give unconditional love to their children. Second the children clearly see that parents are the sole authority figures in the household. These two actions also form the base of how to deal with fighting siblings in a positive manner. Usually parents focus on the relationship between the siblings to resolve sibling rivalry. However, the relation that they they have with their kids is important in such cases. In our previous article, we discussed why sibling rivalry occurs.
Here we are presenting you with some strategies and techniques to handle the situations of sibling rivalry among your kids.
1. Do Not Play Favorites
It has been seen that sometimes parents compare their kids and this is a very unhealthy approach. This makes some kids feel inferior and insecure. As a result, they start picking on their siblings every now and then. Stop saying statements such as “Why can you never work hard like your brother?”, “Why can you be not quite and calm like your sister?”, etc.
2. Identify Each Child Individually
It is important that parents identify and accept that each of their child is different and unique from his/her siblings. Parents should identify the unique personality and talents of every child. They should encourage every child to act and behave as himself/herself only. They should be encouraged to compete with the situation, not with them. For example, if you want your kids to drink their milk you should ask them to race with the clock. They should not be asked to compete with each other. If practiced on regular basis, we can assure you that you will find a good way of how to deal with fighting siblings.
3. Kids learn from Parents
Kids see and learn what their parents do. Therefore, it is important that parents present good examples for their kids. In case of sibling rivalry, parents need to work on their own issues in a positive manner in front of kids. In this way, kids can learn to work out their issues in a non-violent way too. Parents should also generally talk with kids about healthy ways to solve conflicts every now and then. This lets the kids to apply their latent learning in actual scenarios.
4. Not Letting the Child in Control
It was discussed in the basics of sibling rivalry that kids fight to gain the attention of their parents. This can prove to be a very unhealthy practice. Therefore, parents should never allow the child to be the controlling agent ever!! Always ask the kids to go somewhere else to continue their fight. Tell them that you do not want your eyes to see or your ears to hear their unnecessary drama. This is a proven technique when it comes to answer how to deal with fighting siblings.
5. “Being Fair” Versus “Being Equal”
Older siblings fighting is also a very common happening in different families. There is a technique you can use for your older kids especially. You have to clarify them that due to age differences some privileges can be given to the little ones. Once you become successful in making your older child understand this, you can see clear differences. Your kids need your reassurance that everyone is being treated fairly, if not equally. This is among one of the main teenage sibling fighting solutions as well.
6. Individual Alone-Time for Each Kid
It is very important that parents give every child his or her own alone-time. During a child’s alone-time, parents get to spend their time with that specific child only. This makes every child feel special. Also, it is a good therapeutic intervention time for that specific kid. Parents can talk with the kid about his or her siblings in a positive manner. This one-on-one time does not need to be very lengthy. Even a mere 10 minutes once or twice a week can work wonders for the parents and the kids. This is a tried way of how to deal with fighting siblings.
7. Family Fun Time
It is also imperative that parents plan and carry out family fun activities from time to time. Such activities lead to the development to positive and good memories among kids. When conflicts arise in future, such good memories help in overcoming the anger quite effectively. Also, parents can make the kids recall the good time to overlook the small fights between siblings. This way of handling sibling rivalry actually works for the longer run.
8. Regular Family Meetings
If you witness older siblings fighting frequently, then regular family meetings can help you a lot. Older kids have an innate desire to be given responsibilities. They want to prove themselves in the eyes of their parents, peers and relatives. Parents should develop some basic rules for meetings and have the kids follow them during the meetings. Everyone should be given a chance to participate in such meetings. Also, every child should be given some responsibility/responsibilities that must be reported in the next meeting. This creates a sense of positive encouragement and initiative-taking impulses within the older children.
9. “Listen!” Not Just Listen
Last but not the least, parents should always “listen” – actually listen to what their kids have to talk. Kids need the assurance that their parents care for them and their thoughts. Once they are sure about this, they become peaceful at heart. Resultantly, they seldom indulge in fights with their siblings and other kids too. This is also an effective technique on how to deal with fighting siblings.
All in all, sibling rivalry is a broad area that includes different approaches and techniques. However, the most critical role is played by parents and the importance that they give to each child individually. Kids can sense how they are treated. So, make sure that your kids feel warm and belonged to you. This is the basic answer to the question of how to deal with fighting siblings.
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