KC Parent: 10 Steps to Squash Sibling Rivalry
Instead of losing your cool with your clashing kids, try a few of these tips to enjoy a more harmonious household and teach valuable life skills in the process.
By Christa Melnyk Hines
Whether they arrive in the family biologically or through adoption or remarriage, kids don’t choose their siblings. With diverse personalities collected under one roof, it’s no wonder brothers and sisters have antagonized each other—and aggravated their parents—since time began. Instead of losing your cool with your clashing kids, try a few of these tips to enjoy a more harmonious household and teach valuable life skills in the process.
Foster problem-solving. Ask your kids to consider each other’s feelings and work toward solving their disagreements with empathy-building questions like “How would it make you feel if your brother/sister said that to you?” and solution-seeking queries like “What can you do to help the situation?”
“It’s important for siblings to resolve their issues on their own so they can practice managing challenging interpersonal interactions,” says Dr. Simone Moody, clinical psychologist, Children’s Mercy Kansas City. “As a parent you will not always be there to rescue your children and solve their problems.”
Developing conflict resolution skills will not only help kids better manage a dispute on the playground, but also will serve them well later in life as they navigate confrontations in their personal relationships or with a pesky coworker.
Read the full story and see all of the tips via KC Parent
Learn more about Developmental and Behavioral Health at Children's Mercy