Six smart sibling strategies

Jul 30, 2013

When you have more than one child, you are constantly, as a parent, drawn into their battles. You will see your preschool child telling you tales about his older sister, and these tales are not always complimentary. As soon as you hear this tale, you will come in to solve the problem. This is something that you should not be doing, though. It is good to hear them out and acknowledge their feelings, but getting more involved than that is not a good idea.

A big family strategy is to place the onus back on kids to resolve their own disputes. Here are some ways to respond when your child comes to you with a tale about what his sibling did or said to him:

* Invite them to solve the issue themselves. Ask them if it is something they can deal with and handle well? It’s not that parents don’t want to help kids resolve issues, it’s just that some things really don’t need your help and if you let your children practice resolving themselves at an early age, you will notice that they will end up fighting less and interacting more.

* Put them together in the same boat. Tell them that you will only listen to them when they both tell you the same story. This is the most effective way to resolve a dispute amongst preschool aged children. If they are able to tell you the same story, then they are both telling the truth and the situation is resolved.

* Ask your child to write down what happened. As they write down exactly what happened, they are clearing their minds at the same time. At the end when they hand the paper to you, tell them you will respond too. Most of the time, they would have solved the problem mid-way through writing.

Happy Parenting!