As parents, we want the best for our kids and we encourage them to become the best version of themselves. I’m yet to encounter a parent who did not want their kids to succeed, for whatever reasons. However, we sometimes unconsciously or consciously encourage sibling rivalry through our actions and this is not a good thing. Learn about some of these strategies that cause sibling rivalry and solutions.
1. Comparing your kids
Each kid is unique and they possess different kinds of strengths and weaknesses. It is not fair to compare them. You should treat them differently. If you compare one kid to the other, the one who is underperforming will feel inferior to the other and this will definitely create some form of a rift between them. A sibling rivalry solution is to be aware of the words you use.
2. Letting one know they are more loved than the other
We are supposed to love all our kids unconditionally. We should not pile all the love on one kid and leave the others in the cold. It’s true that some kids really outdo our expectations and we might feel more affection towards them but do not let this shown in front of the others. You will only be creating a breeding ground for hate and rivalry.
3. Giving kids unequal amounts of attention
Always make sure that your kids receive the same amount of attention irrespective of their accomplishments. By giving the kids similar amounts of attention, you are allowing them to explore their uniqueness without competing with each other. In the process, encourage them to help each other out and you will be having one big, happy family. My sibling rivalry solution to this is to do something nice with each of them every so often. One to one time is lovely and my children have alwayss appreciated and enjoyed these special times.
4. Stop labelling your kids sibling rivalry solutions
You have heard this a lot when you visit some families: ‘This is the funny one’, ‘This is the smart one’, and other labels. Well, if there is a smart kid in the house, that means the others are dumb or they do not compare?
Trust me kids notice these things and it starts bothering them at a young age. You might not have ulterior intentions when giving them these labels and it might not even occur to you that harm could result. Better avoid all these and start speaking in terms of teamwork. Let the kids know that they are all unique and you do not favour one over the other.
5. Not offering them equal opportunities in life
This is sad really but some parents offer their children different shots in life. How do you expect them to excel if you are not giving them everything they need to do so? For instance, how do you choose which child to send to the best school? What happens to the others?
No matter what it is (Education, business), every kid deserves to be given a perfect shot to see if they can excel in whatever they seek out to do. By limiting some kids and uplifting others, you will only be creating a gap between them and this is not a good way to bring them up. Sibling rivalry will surely result but it won’t be too late to manage and ease sibling rivalry and solutions.