How To Deal With Sibling Rivalry

How To Deal With Sibling Rivalry?

How To Deal With Sibling Rivalry?

Sibling rivalry is normal but it can be extremely stressful; you might worry that your children will grow to resent each other or that they’ll hurt one another. This blog will help you to deal with sibling rivalry and to understand why your children fight and how to cope with it.

How Does Sibling Rivalry Look Like?

Sibling rivalry can take on many forms. Your children might argue frequently, respond to each other with sarcasm, call each other names and put the blame on one another. Younger children are also likely to get physical; for example, they might hit each other or destroy each other’s things out of spite.

What Causes Sibling Rivalry?

If your child is hostile towards their siblings, you might be asking yourself, is there something wrong with them? Luckily, difficult behaviour doesn’t mean your child is bad or will grow up to be bad. Sibling rivalry commonly happens if there’s an age difference because the older child might feel threatened by the arrival of a new family member. They used to get all the attention and now they’ll have to share it with their sibling; this might make them feel like they have to compete for their parent’s love. If the attention children receive is unequal, the older child might feel even more threatened. In some cases, children might pick up fights because they’re mirroring their parents’ behaviour. If you and your partner fight a lot, your child might think it’s a reasonable way to initiate playing with their sibling and resolve conflict.

How To Deal With Sibling Rivalry?

If it’s just one of the children that picks fights, make sure you don’t compare them in any way. Don’t draw comparisons between how they look, their skills and behaviours – this will only cause more rivalry and might result in long-term problems such as low self-esteem. Treat your children fairly but take their age into consideration. Older children will most likely have more responsibilities but also more privileges such as going to bed later – make sure the younger child understands this. You can also encourage them to join in on fun activities together but avoid forcing them to spend all their time with each other. Lastly, make sure you express genuine interest in your children’s feelings. Ask them why they’re upset and encourage them to talk about their emotions. Being listened to might show them that you care and make reduce their need for attention. If the rivalry happens between older children and things are getting out of control, it might be time for a family meeting. Once everyone gathers together, give every child a chance to speak and come up with solutions.

Dealing with your children’s difficult behaviour can be mentally exhausting. Contact My Family Psychologist for support

If you are feeling pressured or need someone to speak to, contact My Family Psychologist for a confidential chat about how we may be able to help.

You can contact the My Family Psychologist Offices between 8 am and 8 pm to book an appointment.

Get in touch to see how we can help.

Scroll to Top