20-40-60 Etiquette---How do I deal with sibling rivalry?
YOU ASK! WE ANSWER! YOU DECIDE!
When my boys, aged 13 and 9, get in a fight, I usually try to find out who started and punish that one. Many parents I know would punish both of them… just for fighting.
What is the best way to deal with sibling rivalry at these ages? I also cannot figure out how to get a manners lesson in here about just fighting in general. Do you have an idea?
CALLIE’S ANSWER: Boys fight, end of story, no matter how old they are.
How you parent is unique and only you can decide how you want to raise your children. I’m just the babysitter, not the parent. I usually separate them letting them calm down and get away from each other.
Simply having a conversation about fighting is a good way to get them to understand. Always try to be the role model.
LILLIE-BETH’S ANSWER: I don’t know that there is a blanket answer for all fights, but my goal for my three kids (who are all in elementary school for one more year, when the oldest moves on) is to teach them how to resolve conflict in general, respectfully. What better way than to let them practice on each other? After all, in a family, conflict is guaranteed.
One mom I know punishes both her boys if the fight escalates to the point that she has to get involved, but they know that and do all they can to work things out without bringing their issue to her.
If your boys know that you’re not going to respond, and that if you have to, it won’t turn out well for either of them, they might work things out more quickly. I try to do that at times, and it’s neat to hear my children discussing their disagreements in the other room. I stay out of it as long as I can, but I listen. And there is a point where I can tell that it has escalated and that it’s time to intervene. And usually, at that point, I can tell who is at fault and who should receive the consequences.
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