Sibling rivalry is a problem in many families with more than one child. What is the cause of this? Unfortunately, through the centuries, our society has been encouraging the rivalry between those who are older and younger, as well as brothers and sisters. Sibling rivalry occurs through the prism of the attitudes of the parent toward them. The scientists child psychologists, agree on the idea that the causes of this children’s rivalry aren’t just the child’s survival instinct in the society. Most often, the culprit of such behavior is the parents’ attitude towards their children. It’s exactly the parents’ behavior that pushes the children towards sibling rivalry. Furthermore, we are going to shed light on the mistakes parents make in their children’s upbringing. These mistakes can cause children to feel like failures and promote sibling rivalry.
Don’t single out your Favorites
To pick out a favorite is mistake number one. Every child is individual, and their personality develops with age. Some children are more successful in some things than others. Some children are more talented in a certain activity than others. However, while watching them in their behavior or their judgments, you are looking for something that is more similar to you. You begin to give one child more preference. No matter how often you say that you love all your children, you put one of them in first place. Children are very sensitive in perceiving their parents’ attitude towards them. Thoughts like these and their corresponding behaviors must be immediately eradicated.
If you want peace between your children, love them and show your endless love to every one of them. If a child feels that he or she is important to you, their self esteem is higher and they treat their siblings as equals. It’s natural that it’s impossible to avoid minor quarrels whatsoever, and even some resentment. But in whole, a child will feel confident in his or her family. Often tell your child how much you love them. Spend time with every child equally. Following these recommendations, sibling rivalry will be limited to minor quarrels, which will not develop into deep resentment.
Don’t compare and don’t set one child as an example for the other
Mistake number two that parents make so often is comparing children. “Your brother has already finished eating, and you”, “Your sister behaves so well and why can’t you do the same?”, “All your brothers and sisters were so good at school and you are a poor student! What a shame!” etc. There are plenty of examples of phrases like these. Let’s look into what they may mean to your child. Any comparison between a child and their sibling pushes him or her towards the conclusion that he or she is bad and doesn’t deserve the love of the parents. Their belief in their abilities lowers, and anger towards the, the child of comparison begins to reveal itself subconsciously in the child. This is a wonderful ground for rivalry. “I will prove that I’m better than my sister/brother. My parents will understand that they are mistaken about him or /her” In other words, the child doesn’t concentrate on fixing the concrete problem: to eat well, behave well, or study better. He or she directs all their energy to prove that their brother or sister also lacks in a certain field. Frequent quarrels and the desire to tattletale on the other siblingresultsfrom this.
If you consider comparison a good method of upbringing, try to compare the child’s behavior now to that of before, i.e. “You always eat so well but today you don’t eat much at all. Are you not feeling well?...” or “You always behave so well but today you made your mother/father upset with your behavior. What’s the reason?...”
Encourage every child’s individuality
You have noticed how different your children are. What one child likes to do may not be to the other child’s liking at all. These conflicts in interest indicate the individuality of every child in your family. Every child is a personality with certain views on life, Regardless of the fact that children have the same parents, and their DNA cells are similar, they are absolutely different. However, some parents, in their desire to make all children equal, may simply ignore the individual features of the character and psychology of every child.
Encourage every child’s individuality. Let your children be fond of what they like, dress in a different way, and have their individual personal space. The older they become, the more they will differ from one another. Apply different methods of bringing up children. The measures you have taken in bringing up the older children will probably not produce a positive result on the younger ones.
Now you know the mistakes parents often make while bringing up more than one child in a family. We hope that our recommendations will help you reduce sibling rivalry and help you raise siblings, which are loving and confident in themselves.
Good parenting .