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How to Avoid Sibling Jealousy

How to Avoid Sibling Jealousy

Are your kids constantly fighting, making up, acting stubborn? Follow the advice of our psychologist to build a better relationship between them.

under 8 years

Often seeking the praise and attention of their parents, children compete with each other and subsequently become jealous when their parents pay attention to the other sibling. A jealous child becomes irritated, insecure, and worried. They’re afraid that they are not appreciated or loved. Don’t assume your child is jealous out of spite or hatred towards their sibling. They are experiencing difficult feelings, therefore need your love and attention more than ever.

Most often, jealousy occurs in older children. The firstborn were the only ones for a while and received all the attention. If there are three or more children in a family, the "middle" children may suffer from the fact that with the advent of the younger ones, they are no longer the smallest and not the cutest. Roles change, and not every kid has time to adjust. Therefore, it is so important for parents to work on preparing the older children for the birth of a brother or sister.

Our main advice is not to punish jealousy and do not expect the absence of arguments from your children. Fights between siblings are normal. If the family has rules and structure, a healthy atmosphere, children can always make peace and live peacefully with each other.

What should parents do?

  • Do not take sides in arguments, especially if you didn’t see the conflict. When resolving situations, rely on family rules, and if you don’t have any yet, make them together.
  • Discuss the rules with the children and discuss what can and cannot be done during a conflict. For example, you can express your opinion, but you cannot yell and throw things.
  • Look for a solution to the problem together, encourage children if they try to do it on their own. No need to look for someone to blame, look for a solution.
  • Spend time with each child separately and in private. Each of your children should feel heard and important.
  • It is not necessary for one child to adapt to another, for example, an older one to a younger one. The oldest child remains a child, no matter how much older they are.
  • Remember that all children are different, they have different interests, they are not alike - do not compare them with each other.

Does your baby have any real reasons to feel jealous? You need to analyze your relationship with each child and with everyone together.

Grab a piece of paper and answer the following questions:

  • Who really gets more time and attention?
  • Who gets more affection and warmth?
  • What is your attitude to the "jealous"?
  • Who is the most demanding in the family?
  • Which child do you enjoy spending time with (be honest with yourself)?
  • And now - is there any reason for the child to be jealous?

Analyze your answers. Observe your behavior, the behavior of your partner, relatives in relation to each baby. Consider if toddlers might be experiencing a lack of your attention.

It is important to love your children and accept them for who they are - with all the negative emotions. Be attentive to everyone!

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