Using Sibling Rivalry as a Training Tool
It is so easy to get irritated and frustrated when our children don’t get along. Constant fighting between siblings can be exhausting for parents. However, sibling rivalry is a great teaching tool for our children to learn many life lessons. One lesson is how to handle it appropriately when someone irritates you. Another lesson is conflict management. The lesson that life is not always fair can also be taught through siblings. Keep focused on the importance of these lessons and come up with a plan for utilizing sibling rivalry for training. This will help give purpose for dealing with these issues and help us as parents to not feel so frustrated.
Take time to set up parameters on where the line of inappropriate behaviors is. Then have a family meeting to discuss this line, the consequences for stepping over the line and options for appropriately dealing with the conflict. Giving your children options on how to appropriately deal with it when their sibling irritates them is part of the training. They can talk to their sibling, remove themselves from the situation or refocus on something else. Another key to training is not only handing out consequences for inappropriate behavior but also rewarding the positive. If our children make the right choice and avoid the fighting we need to make sure we are going crazy with praise.
Listen to today’s podcast for more insight on sibling rivalry.