Saturday, July 10, 2010

Five Tips to Minimize Competition Between Siblings

Jealousy is an emotion typically refers to the negative thoughts and feelings of insecurity, fear and anxiety. This happens between siblings in the family. The baby of the family wants to be the center of attention and this can be the source of competition or rivalry between siblings. Jealousy can push the person to work harder and expect more of him but it can also wear a little one down and prevent him to show his best. Below are some tips on how to manage jealousy and bring harmonious relationship among the family and other people.

TIP ONE: Treat each child as a unique person instead of equals. Parents often think siblings need to be treated exactly the same. However, when parents try to give the exact same amount of love, time and attention, kids become suspicion instead of satisfied. A child may wonder, "Did I really get as good a present as my sister?" Or he may complain, "Mark always gets to sit on the big couch." It's better to think in terms of treating siblings as individuals rather than equals.

TIP TWO: Avoid comparisons at all costs. Don't ask, "Why can't you clean up your room like your brother?" Or, "Your sister gets straight A's -- why can't you at least get B's?" Parents can aggravate feelings of jealousy by holding one child up to the other. Although your intentions may be innocent, a child is likely to hear the message "You love Johnny more than me." Lifelong resentments and grudges are born from making comparisons.

TIP THREE: Nurture unique qualities in each child. Promote different interests so that each child excels in her own unique way. When a child's special talents are recognized, it sets him apart from his siblings and builds up his self-esteem.

TIP FOUR: Make spending time alone with each child a priority. Kids treasure these precious moments. Schedule these times so they remain a priority. I guarantee that years from now you won't look back with regret that you didn't spend more time in meetings. However, you may wish you'd spent more time with your kids.

TIP FIVE: Set clear boundaries. Kids need to learn to respect each other. That means the oldest should not be allowed to tease younger siblings, while the younger siblings should be taught not to hassle older ones. Bedrooms are private places, and siblings should ask for permission before entering. Parents should be impartial when kids squabble occur, otherwise bickering becomes a way to get parents attention.


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