Parenting Articles about Sibling Rivalry

You love your children, but they don't always seem to love each other. Are you tired of the constant fighting and arguing that come with sibling rivalry? Empowering Parents tells you how to handle sibling rivalry effectively and restore peace in your home.
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Anger, Rage and Explosive Outbursts: How to Respond to Your Child or Teen's Anger

Anger, Rage and Explosive Outbursts: How to Respond to Your Child or Teen's Anger

Everyone gets mad sometimes, children and adults alike. Anger is an emotion that can range from slightly irritated to moderately angry, all the way to full-blown rage. A child’s anger often makes us feel uncomfortable, so there can be a natural tendency to try and change the situation for your child, so the anger will evaporate.Or on the flip side, it’s easy to fall into the trap of “bringing down the hammer,” to put a stop to the anger through intimidation or punishment. But the fact is, your child will experience situations that may trigger anger throughout life. You can’t stop the triggers, but you can give your child the tools to understand anger and deal with it.

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Sibling Fighting: 5 Ways to Teach Your Kids to Get Along

Sibling Fighting: 5 Ways to Teach Your Kids to Get Along

We’ve all heard the following phrases from our kids: “Stop touching me!” “Give that back!” “Knock it off!” “MOM, he took my stuff!” “DAD, she won’t stay on her side of the car!” Sometimes it’s simply annoying and frustrating, like fingernails on a chalkboard. Other times, arguments cross the line into verbal and physical abuse. If you’re the parent of an oppositional, defiant child, you know that when they butt heads with brothers or sisters, they usually go “all in.” What starts as something minor quickly escalates to full-blown fighting and things can quickly get out of control. Parents often end up in the role of referee, just trying to regain peace in the home.

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Kids Fighting? Read This Before Summer Starts

Kids Fighting? Read This Before Summer Starts

Why are our kids often at each other’s throats in the summer? The biggest cause of fighting during the long summer break is the fact that you’re spending a whole lot of time together. If external stresses increase, so does the tension inside your house. We all start to feel boxed in when this happens, and it’s easy to lose your temper at moments like these. Your kids begin to act out, too—the typical pattern of name–calling, teasing, criticizing and bossing each other around increases until the atmosphere is thick with everyone’s annoyance and bad feelings.

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Siblings at War in Your Home? (Declare a Ceasefire Now!)

Siblings at War in Your Home? (Declare a Ceasefire Now!)

Sibling rivalry is normal in families with more than one child. It becomes a problem when one child bullies or dominates the other. It’s also a more complex issue than it first appears. On the surface, you have two kids who are “at war”—who bicker constantly and don’t get along. There can be many reasons for this, but at the core of this rivalry is a common theme that runs through it all: the sense that one sibling is the victim of the other and somehow “less than.” And that child often believes that he gets less love from his parents than his acting out brother or sister does.

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Sibling Rivalry: Good Kid vs. Bad Kid

Sibling Rivalry:  Good Kid vs. Bad Kid

Are you tired of being the referee for all your kids’ fights? Do they constantly argue, leaving you exhausted and frustrated as a parent, wondering where you went wrong with them? Carole Banks, MSW, LCSW is the manager of the Parental Support Line for the Total Transformation Program, and in this article she gives helpful advice that will empower you to you stop the sibling rivalry show and start enjoying being a parent again. The most important thing to remember: never place your children in the roles of good kid and bad kid.

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The Lost Children: When Behavior Problems Traumatize Siblings

The Lost Children: When Behavior Problems Traumatize Siblings

Children who grow up with a chronically defiant, oppositional sibling grow up in an environment of trauma. According to James Lehman, It’s traumatizing when something hurtful happens to you, and you can’t control it, you can’t stop it, you can’t predict how hurtful it’s going to be, and you can’t predict when or whether it’s going to happen. Here, he discusses how parents can reduce the traumatic effects of hostile behavior on siblings and how to help “the lost child” in the family.

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No More Boys Will Be Boys: Is It Sibling Fighting or Bullying?

Blogger Editor's Note: Today's guest blog post comes from Adrian at Adrian's Crazy Life, where she blogs about parenting, decluttering, finances and is always going 90 miles with her hair on fire, and loving every minute of it. Adrian has three sons, ages 30, 22 and 13. Raising three boys can be exhausting, particularly when your kids are always arguing, fighting, and seem to be intent on just driving each other crazy.  It’s hard on the parents, it’s hard on the furniture, and it’s definitely hard on the kids, too.
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I Didn't Do It! How to Handle Sibling Fights

Blogger When helping to curb siblings from their day-to-day arguments, you may find one or both of them denying what you absolutely know they did. Big brother walks past his little brother, and suddenly there is a downspout of tears from the younger. “I didn’t do anything” is often the lie you receive from the bigger, stronger, (or more vindictive) sibling. Particularly since he is obviously still fuming from perceived injustice from earlier in the day.
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Does One Kid in Your Family Get All the Attention? Don't Let Your Good Child Be Overlooked

Blogger Parents talk a lot about their child who misbehaves, and why shouldn’t they? Have you ever seen a website devoted to getting help with your well-behaved child? Probably not, but I believe it's a subject worth writing about. A well-behaved child is often an overlooked child, particularly if they have siblings who act out and take most of the parents' attention. Here are some things to keep in mind when you have a child who is a proverbial good kid.
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Stepbrother Rivalry: Taking It to Another Level

Blogger My children are six-and-a-half years apart, so I have always considered myself lucky that they never seemed to have sibling rivalry issues. Imagine my surprise when I met my now-husband, and a competition developed between his 2-year-old (at the time) and my then- 5-year-old son! His other son was 6 and we expected the competition to be between the two of them, not the 2 year old! What we saw was that my son and the 6 year old did not have a lot in common as far as playing. They got along well enough, but they did not like the same toys. In fact, the 6 year old was more into reading, hanging with the grown-ups  and computer stuff than playing with action figures, Legoes, cars or Imaginext. BUT the 2 year old was!! He coveted my son's toys. He wanted to play with it all and my son wanted no part of that. And so it began...
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Mutiple-Sibling Rivalry: At Our Home It's Survival of the Fittest!

Parent Blogger Growing up, siblings close in age are usually the best of friends and playmates -- most of the time. Eventually, however, they will revert to primitive instinctual behavior when vying for a coveted toy, favorite television program, snack or their parents' attention. In our home overrun by five kids -- the eldest is 9 and youngest is 2 -- competition is stiff and each child must cultivate and hone a specific talent that draws attention to themselves and away from their siblings. Darwin's renowned Survival of the Fittest theory states that in the natural and oftentimes hostile world, where many predators are competing for a limited supply of prey, only the genes of the strongest and fittest of each species will survive and continue mutating and adapting to its respective environmental conditions.
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Social Studies: What to Do When Your Kids' Social Lives Differ Drastically?

Blogger Do your kids' social lives differ from each other drastically? When my son E was younger, it seemed easy to find play dates for him. I belonged to a play group in my neighborhood and a bunch of my friends had kids around the same age. Even when we moved from the Midwest to the east coast, I was still able to help him find friends (it was easier for him than for myself). Nothing delighted me more than the sound of kids running through the house screaming. It meant that he had friends and was having fun and I excused the loudness.  When we moved to a different state last year (also out east), E once again made friends automatically. He connected with our neighbors’ kids, as well as kids from shul and kids from his school.
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Young Kids and Competition

Blogger Lately, it’s been all about competition in our house. E likes to play board games but he expects to win each time. If he does win, he makes fun of the person who lost. (“Ha ha, I win, you lose!”) If he doesn’t win, he cries about it. I’ve taken it upon myself to teach him about healthy competition and how it doesn’t matter whether you win or lose, as long as you’re nice about it.
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Sibling Rivalry: When Everything is a Contest

Parent Blogger “I win!” my seven year-old son shouted triumphantly as he shoved past his ten year-old brother and raced inside the door. “No, you didn’t,” the elder retorted smugly. “I won. I had my hand on the door first.” My younger son immediately howled, burst into tears, and then promptly delivered a smart thump on the back of his older brother.
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