Raising a child is no easy task. Not to mention doing it when there are siblings involved. Raising several kids at home usually makes the work a bit tougher. As a parent, you’re often walking on thin ice, trying to make sure you’re not doing anything that could spark a rivalry between your kids.

You don’t want any bad blood between family members, and most of all, you want to avoid making siblings feel left out. Well, that’s what happened with this family. Parents had a big issue that they don’t know how to solve.

© JollyOldSaintNicki / Reddit

A few suggestions for raising 2 or more happy siblings

© That ’70s Show / Carsey-Werner-Mandabach Productions and co-producers
  • Don’t compare siblings to each other or other children. You may think you are motivating them, but all they’re hearing is that their sibling is better than them and that you don’t love them as much. Set boundaries, but don’t mention other people. Even what you may see as a positive comparison can backfire.
  • Don’t take sides. When you side with one child against the other, even if you are 100% sure they’re right, you’re creating a rivalry. If they can’t articulate the problem correctly, both children will interpret your actions as a symbol of love given to the sibling who “won” the argument.
  • Encourage teamwork. Your children will be siblings for the rest of their lives. They’ll probably spend more time together than with you in the long run.
    That is why it is essential to foster a feeling of belonging. They should work as a team and look out for each other when things get tough. Look for opportunities to reward sibling teamwork at all times.
© Jack and Jill / Columbia Pictures and co-producers
  • Don’t treat siblings as one. Enrolling them in the same activities or groups can be a mistake and even foster competition. Your children are different and unique. That’s a cause for celebration, so it’s better to help them explore their interests and talents. Invest time in discovering how to make them flourish.
  • Make sure they have enough personal space. Siblings share parents, toys, family time, and people’s attention. That’s a lot. Sleeping in the same room may not work for children with very different temperaments.
    It’s easier for them to have a private space, such as a tall closet, to keep special objects away from a younger sibling or separate beds, so they can be alone whenever they want.
  • Don’t jump in to solve issues. It’s normal for parents to want to avoid conflict and make sure children don’t fight. However, in doing so, you’re also depriving your children of chances to learn how to work things out on their own.
    Children must be able to find solutions to their problems too. Think of a traffic light: when children are arguing, just take a breather and listen to them. If the situation becomes tense, guide them, but don’t solve the issue. Only if there’s verbal or physical aggression, you must jump in to break it off.

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