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Sibling disputes are usually part of everyday life in any family with more than one child. Depending on a variety of factors, children seem to fight at least once a day, if not several times a day. This can push parents to their limits. But why are there sibling fights? What function might these have? And what can parents do?
Why do siblings fight?
Every child is individual and that’s how it is all the siblings have different reasons to fight. Still, there are some things that especially often the cause from sibling disputes. At the top of the list is Desire for attention and closeness of parents. Each sibling wants to get as much attention as possible from their parents, other siblings are competitors. Children fight this competitive situation with arguments, they argue about who gets more attention and who the parents seem to stick to in this situation. Since loud arguments usually attract the attention of parents, they want to mediate and sometimes actually take sides for the child.
These are particularly common competition between children close in age. Here, the rivalry between children is often especially great, because they compare themselves more with the situation of their siblings. If there are unfair preferences, even from their point of view, frequent quarrels are not uncommon. But siblings of the same sex also fight more often and for the same reason. They also compare strongly.
in children up to about 4 years old however, it often really works about the item, which the other sibling currently has, which they themselves would like to have. As they have not yet been able to develop any other strategies, they will seize on this one and try to take it by force if necessary.
It also plays a role birth order children. Each position has its own challenges and characteristics of children. First-borns, for example, have only been babies for a while and know what it’s like to enjoy the undivided attention they no longer receive when their first sibling is born. In addition, however, they also have to “fight” things out with their parents first, such as when certain things are allowed. Subsequent children no longer have to fight these fights, which may be perceived as unfair. This can also lead to sibling quarrels.
In addition, there is many other reasonswhy sibling disputes can arise. They are diverse and individual like every person. The reasons listed here, mainly parental attention or treatment that is perceived as unfair, are often the trigger.
Tips for parents
Now it should be about how parents can respond well to sibling disputes. In general, it should If possible, taking sides or comparing children or formulating expectations should be avoided. Things like “the smarter ones give in” and “act like an adult, you’re older” often have limited effect, as does being next door to a child. In some circumstances, this can fuel the dispute even more, as feelings of unequal treatment and injustice can resurface. In addition, it often happens that one person “can’t” handle the dispute. An argument always involves at least 2 parties.
It’s better, respond individually to conflict situations and children. Parents should ask all parties to the argument what exactly is going on. In order to resolve the dispute constructively, everyone should have their say. It should be clarified what happened and what led to the dispute from the child’s point of view. We should also ask what it has done to the children in each case, i.e. how they feel. Following this, try to find a solution together if possible so that we can continue without arguments. This too can strengthen mutual understanding and thus the relationship between siblings.
Of course, real unequal treatment and preferential treatment can also lead to sibling disputes. Here they are relevant educational methods parents starting point change something.
However, it is it is not always necessary to intervene in sibling disputes. By talking, children also strengthen their own conflict ability. To achieve this, they also have to clean up and solve some gunfights themselves. Therefore, in the event of a dispute, parents should first ask themselves whether intervention seems necessary, or whether the children are already capable of clarifying and resolving the situation themselves. This can be especially the case with older children or teenagers, as they have already acquired many skills that they can use. For smaller children, on the other hand, intervention is usually more appropriate. However, this can in no way be considered a general statement or rule, but always depends on the individual situation. Even older children or young people may lack the necessary experience to solve a dispute independently and as constructively as possible. One individual assessment of parentswho know their children best is therefore always necessary.
In conclusion, we can say that sibling fights are normalalthough they can push parents to their limits. reasons for such disputes exist diverse and individual. Often but it’s about them parental attention or one like Unfair treatment. As with the relevant dispute settled should always be individually judged a depending on the specific situation to be made. If the parents evaluate the situation in such a way that the children cannot solve the dispute on their own, a constructive intervention reasonable. Everyone involved should express their opinion and describe what happened and how they felt or are feeling. Then work together to find a solution and consider how to proceed without a fight. Although sibling fights can be exhausting, they are normal and they usually have a positive effect on children’s ability to resolve conflicts. As a parent, you should give it a try keep calm and not to be pushed into a kind of refereeing position, but to respond individually to all children. Because it always takes more people to argue.
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