This Friday’s question is posed by Kirsten Jessiman of Toronto, Canada. Kirsten asks,

“How do you handle your kids’ sibling rivalry? Do you intervene, or do you just accept that it’s a part of life and let them sort it out themselves?”

Here’s what World Moms Blog writers had to say…

Margie Bryant of Arkansas, USA says:

“This is such an ongoing issue for me because my boys, 15 and 9, have me convinced that they will always dislike each other. It’s funny because I have pictures of them playing together when my youngest was a baby. Now, they can’t stop arguing or trying to wrestle when they are near each other. It drives me insane. People tell me that this is normal boy behavior but I am not convinced. I always intervene because I can’t stand for them to be mean to each other. Plus, if I didn’t intervene, the wrestling matches only get worse.”

Kirsten Jessiman of Toronto, Canada writes:

I try to give my kids the opportunity to resolve their own issues. I figure that they have to learn sometime how to sort out their differences. If it escalates too far or if it feels like my head is about to explode, I intervene.

Eva Fannon of Washington, USA states:

“We haven’t quite gotten to that stage yet.  Right now my oldest (4 years old) adores her baby sister (8 months old).  She plays with her, tries to help me out at clothing and diaper changes, and although quite messy, even offers to feed her sister at mealtimes.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this lasts, because I can recall my younger brother and I beating each other up when we were kids.”

Maggie Ellison of South Carolina, USA writes:

“My kids can be the best of friends, but they get into their fair share of arguments.  That comes with having a sibling!  There are times when they have solved their problems together and I usually beam with happiness when that happens!  When they can’t get to that point together, I step in and help them work it out.  I want to give them the skills to solve their own problems, compromise, express their needs, etc., so I have the opportunity to do that when I do step in.  When they don’t need me, I see my hard work paying off and that’s great!!

Oh yes, I do let them know how proud I am of them, when they work their problems out together.  I think that is really important!  I want them to know when they are doing the right things!  :D”

Courtney Cappallo of Massachusetts, USA says:

“A girlfriend of mine gave me a great suggestion on how to handle sibling arguments.  She suggested sitting them both on the sofa and have them hold hands for five minutes.  If they talk during the five minutes then you add another minute to the timer.  I tried this with my girls and my 5-year-old ending up giggling by the end of the five minutes!”

What about you?  How do you handle sibling rivalry?

Photo credit to  This photo has a creative commons attribution license.

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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