Top 9 Reasons Why Siblings Don’t Get Along
It’s been awhile since I’ve written a post. Sorry for being missing in action. I was working on some other projects and before I realized it, several weeks had went by!
It’s time to discuss a topic near and dear to my heart. Siblings fighting, bickering, arguing, and then getting mad at you when the guilty party gets in trouble. It is an amazing phenomenon. First they’re crying because they’re hurt or wanting their sibling to get in trouble (i.e., snitching); then, 2 seconds later you’re the bad guy (I guess most of you are women, so “bad girl”) because you corrected the offending party. Actually, there probably wasn’t an innocent party in the mix.
They just can’t make up their mind whether they want to fight or play together. Why can’t they get along and give you 3 minutes of peace?
Top 9 Reasons Why Siblings Don’t Get Along
1. Egocentric – The #1 reason is the inability to consider another person’s concerns. Children are inherently egocentric. It is natural for children to be more obsessed with what they want and to believe anyone else that is trying to take their portion of anything is the enemy.
2. Jealousy – This leads to jealousy. Children tend to feel slighted when another child gets anything whether it is equal or not. Equality does help, but any time that it can’t be equal, the gloves come off.
3. Differences in Age – While many people feel it is best to wait four or five years between children, it might not be the best for the relationship you were hoping your children to have. It will eliminate some fighting as they will have different likes and friends. However, a large age difference can also result in a lack of connection/closeness. Children who don’t have anything in common may dislike each other. In other situations though, the age difference can bring out good qualities in the older child by nurturing those care-giving instincts and a great relationship could develop. Watch out that it doesn’t become enabling!
4. Competition – Children who are into the same activities can become very competitive with each other. If one wins, the other will be devastated that he isn’t as skilled as the older sibling. Comparisons will be made at who can run faster, who can catch a ball or throw a ball better, and on and on!
5. Space – Siblings who live in the same house will fight over shared space. They’ll get on each others nerves. Skin will crawl over what one of them is watching on their tablet. Or how close they’re sitting to each other. “She’s breathing on me.” “He’s looking at me.” “His foot is on my leg.” Put them in the same vehicle together and see what happens.
6. Stuff – They will fight over “stuff”. If one of them has a pair of giant inflatable clown shoes, the rest of them will want it too. It doesn’t matter if the owner of the item hasn’t played with or looked at it in six months; the fight will be on. The “finder’s keeper’s” individual will claim it and the “owner” will chase the other around the house until they’re entwined on the floor in a Figure 4 headlock. Oh, the agony!
7. Unequal Treatment – Children, being the egocentric beasts that they are, will have no concept of why different age ranges will be treated differently by parents. It only means to the oppressed party that you “love” the other more. Yes, you must love the older one more because they get to ride the bus. Or the youngest still gets toys for birthdays when the oldest child doesn’t play with toys any more. It makes no difference that their room is full of toys from when they were that age; you like the younger one better.
8. Praise – You might give equal praise, but it doesn’t matter. You can’t say their names at the exact same time, so it won’t be good enough. You must “love” one of them better again. You know it; you suck!
9. Birth order – It is next to impossible not to treat your children according to birth order. You can’t put your two year old in a booster seat because you have your eight year old in one. It’s against the law. In so many instances, safety is paramount and you will offend the younger child.
Their fighting will drive you bat sh*t crazy. More so than anything else they do. It all gets washed away during those quiet moments when they’re snuggling together or those wild and crazy times when they’re flying down the roller coaster together. All those arguments that you’ve had to referee will be worth it. The warm feeling will spread throughout your body.
Beware. If you let your guard down, the next child will soon be on its way!
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