Sibling rivalry is defined as a type of competition or animosity among siblings. Now, there are certainly different levels for these occurrences. Some children just have issues sharing with their siblings, some are always trying to compete against them, and then there’s my children.

They. Fight. About. Everything.

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And I mean everything. Why does there need to be an argument over who got to the car first? Was someone giving out medals for that? I must have missed the memo for that Olympic event. Of course they’re always fighting over toys, regardless of the fact that they have their own rooms with their own toys. Apparently it’s more fun to go into your brother’s room and fight over his toys instead.

When we were planning our family I was adamant about not having two in diapers at the same time, so we decided that three years apart would be perfect. Even though I don’t like to compare my kids to other kids, I’ve noticed siblings who are closer in age seem to get along much better. Of course I don’t know how they are at home – which is always when my kids are at their very worst behavior.

The tattletaling seems to be endless. And pointless. “He put his leg near me!” “His toy told my toy to go away!” “He won’t stop looking at me!” Really? I have stopped fighting their battles for them and when they tell on each other I simply tell them to go figure out what they need to do about it themselves.

I haven’t quite mastered how to handle the fighting, though. I usually just resort to separating them, but after I go back to my chores or working on something they usually end up at each other’s throats again. I’ve taken away whatever they happen to be arguing over, but something is always ready to take its place.

But can you really make two people get along when they both have such strong personalities? I’m not sure it’s that easy. Maybe I’m just doomed to spend the bulk of my days refereeing.

How do you handle sibling rivalry?

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When I'm not writing, I'm cleaning up after my three very messy boys, ages 8, 5, and 2, and my 1 year old girl. If I had to describe myself in just one sentence: Slightly crunchy, a little crazy and always exhausted.

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4 Responses to Sibling rivalry: Is your house a war zone?

  1. Alma Bosek says:

    Wow, I have two of my very own that fight often.

  2. kylinsmom says:

    I had an issue like this with my two oldest (a boy and a girl 5 years apart). I sent them off to the SAME summer camp, and they came home best friends. Sometimes, removing them from their own peers to have to work together really can work!

  3. Dinah says:

    Oh my! I unfortunately have an only child, so I’m sure that will soon come with problems. BUT, I just have to say that although the boys are upset in your photo it IS absolutely adorable ;)

  4. When my kids fight with each other, instead of separating them, I make them play together. (most of the time) And try to emphasize how we are a family and when it comes down to the nitty gritty, all we have is each other to support one another. And that it wouldn’t be fun to not have a brother.

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