sibling sister and brothersApril 10 was Siblings Day, a time devoted to growing stronger bonds between siblings. Brothers and sisters celebrated with parties and picnics and rememberances of the good and bad times.  Parenting siblings, especially when there is strong sibling rivalry is challenging to say the least.  Here are some parenting experts with advice about how to help your siblings get past the rivalry and on to better relationships. – 

America’s Nanny: If there are siblings, there is sibling rivalry. It’s a family fact of life. Throw twins or triplets into the mix the intensity significantly increases. Simply stated, sibling rivalry is the competition between siblings to be the favorite child. It’s a battle for the love, attention and affection of one or both parents. It’s a competition to be the chosen child – the one who is loved most by the ones who they want to share least.  Read more  Sibling Rivalry: When Your Kids Don’t Get Along.

Siblings Squabbles: Siblings fight. They argue, they antagonize and in some homes, they even engage in their own creative forms of torture, or so it seems to an outsider looking in. You see, every parent, whether it’s spoken or not, has a threshold where roughhousing, wrestling or messing around becomes more than displays of innocent affection. But in families where multiple siblings exist, the line that differentiates genuine expressions of brotherly or sisterly love from violence can be quite subjective and often inconsistent. For this reason, it can be hard for parents to nip sibling squabbling in the bud.

Let’s face it. At times, boys will wrestle, push and engage in otherwise aggressive behavior. They’re hardwired to do so. And girls will pull hair and argue. It’s in their nature. But the secret to balancing out allowing kids to be kids and keeping everyone safe and free from bullying is found in creating clear boundaries for what is and what is not acceptable in your 

home. If you’re dealing with constant sibling squabbling, put these tips to the test. Read More  Sibling Squabbles.

 Jody Johnston Pawel, Family Therapist: Solving Sibling Strife.  Some parents will dive into the action and solve problems for their children. While this may bring peace and order quickly, it robs children of an opportunity to learn and practice resolving conflicts.

The healthiest approach is to teach children how to work out conflicts with each other, then allow them time to use the skills. If they don’t, then you intervene in a way that helps them solve the problem themselves, but with your guidance.

Here are some more practical tools to use with siblings: Solving Sibling Strife

Sharon Scott, Family Counselor: Sibling Peer PressureI often see siblings influence one another in negative ways.Generally the older child influences one younger who wants to be admired by or fit in with an older kid.  Sometimes it’s even blackmail,”If you tell our parents, you’re in big trouble.”

This is one of the reasons that when your children do something wrong together, talk to them separately.  Allowing each child this privacy will help you to better judge what’s really going on.  The children should both be held accountable and have a consequence for their misbehavior.  Read More Siblings Peer Pressure

Melissa Ingold, Parent to Parent: Preventing Sibling Rivalry starts even before the baby is born. As expecting parents of another baby, you will no longer be able to give the first child your undivided attention as he/she has come to expect. The best time to let your child in on this new arrival is right away. This will give you much more time to prepare your toddler for a sibling. It will baffle them at first, because mommy’s tummy looks the same as it always did. But as the baby inside grows, so will your toddlers understanding. It is important to involve your toddler in every aspect of this new baby. Here are some ways you can do that. Read more Preventing Sibling Rivalry

 

Geraldine Jensen

Publisher and Editor of Families Online Magazine. Our experts provide warm, loving, and generous advice for you, your family and children, no matter their age -- infants, school age, 'tweens, and teenagers. Features include:Parenting, Ages and Stages of Child Development, Child Support, Cooking, Health, Children's Books, Nutrition, Christian Parenting, Relationships, Green-living, Education and School

Ms. Jensen is a leading advocate for families and children and was the founder and president of ACES, The Association for Children for Enforcement of Support.
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