Have you ever had to deal with sibling’s rivalry? I have had to and believe me it’s not as easy as it sounds. Sibling rivalry is a normal issue in the kids growing up years. I have two kids; the elder one, a girl is about 8.5 years and the younger one, a boy is about 2.5 years. I have not had much of an issue managing it for my kids as I prepared my daughter for days ahead much in advance. Also in their case the age difference makes their relationship more about loving and caring. But, who knows things may change when they grow a little older?!
As parents, it is important that we teach our kids to manage the situation. These issues if not taken seriously can hamper their relationships as grown-ups. A lot of onus lies with the parents to make it workable for the kids.
As parents, your responsibility is to help your kids learn to manage it because. If they don’t, these issues will impact their adult life and will be difficult to resolve. Here are eight ways to ensure you are dealing with sibling rivalry in a right way.
- Friendship is important and will go a long way: Prepare your older child for the younger one’s arrival by acknowledging each other’s existence and importance even before the baby is born. Let them be friends early. Talk about the baby in the womb, how it will change their bonding and how they will have to share their room or stuff. If they become close to each other earlier on it will be easy transition once the new one arrives. For this all the adjustments have to be made by the older one.
- Give priority to the older sibling till they settle down with each other: The new baby is too young to feel bad about anything but the older one can certainly get affected by people’s behavior. Attention is what most kids crave for. Therefore, make sure that the older one gets more attention and care. Most visitors bring gifts for the younger one. Make sure you shower some gifts to the older one. Let him/ her be involved with you in a lot more aspects than earlier so that there is no scope left for feeling left out in the family affairs.
- Make sure both kids get everything equally: Do not facilitate sibling rivalry by clearly giving more attention to the younger one all the time. Try to involve the older one in a lot of activities at home. Take help from other family members. Buy relevant stuff for the older one every time you are on a shopping spree for the younger one.
- Decide the boundaries for your kids: All your kids should know what is alright to do and what is not at all acceptable. Never give priority to one over the other. Hurting them emotionally or physically abusing them in front of each other can do ever lasting damage. Try disciplining them by taking all of them together for a task. Make sure they not only respect others around but also treat each other well in the process.
These are very effective simple ways which if consciously practiced can help in a great way to avoid having any sibling rivalries at home.