Posted by MissyHall | Posted in Adopting Mommy | Posted on 17-07-2012
“Siblings without rivalry” …
Is the name of a book I once owned…and I MUST find it, because siblings WITH LOTS of rivalry, stinky faces, ugly words and constant fussing is the reality in my house.
We just returned from a family reunion at the Russian River and I wanted a day to sleep, get organized, find items that are still missing even though I’ve mostly unpacked. But, I am a mom (and truly thankful for that) and those things had to fit around dominoes and art with my little ones, feeding the never-full little bellies, catching up on emails and cleaning (all of which I am okay with)… oh, AAAAND… breaking up the constant bickers between my children (not so okay with this.) I really tried to just ignore the yelling, fighting and tattling, so I could carry on with my chillax plan, but reading a book or lounging around just didn’t happen.
It is the dead center of summer. I am loving our field trips, family fire pit time, summer camps, evening walks and especially the occasional day we get to stay in our pajamas until 3pm. I am not loving that those “lazy” chill days are anything but relaxing because I have to spend extended time correcting and separating two kids who can not seem to get along for more than 10 minutes at a time (unless the tv is on, and I’d prefer it off…just one more thing to “argue” about, right?) Plus, some days I feel very anti-noise. Hmmm, that’s a dilemma as a parent, for sure. And, I am also a hybrid of an extrovert and an introvert. I feel like I had “used up” all my words and all my energy “points” allotted to me and now, I just wanted to be silent. Hmmm, another dilemma for anyone who shares a house with anyone at all, let alone small verbal children.
HELP! Parents, give me your tried and true tips for promoting respect between siblings and keeping my sanity!!
My little “muffins” are 3.5 years apart so they have different interests based on age. They are two different genders, and they also have very different personalities. I try to find the common ground between them and build on it. Today, I gave them both “independent homework” aka a pile of books and worksheets, maps and reading activities. Still, I ended up just taking them to a park, where they could both play with different friends on different things, but really?!?! I’d like to just be able to stay at home and have them get along!! Is that just a dream? Or, is it a possibility? And, I’d like to know HOW? I feel like I spend the day saying to my children: “Were those words kind? Did that action show love? Is that respectful to Mommy?”…truly, those are the only rules we have because they all go back to the heart– I want our kids to want to treat each other with love.
Of course, I am always thinking of how this will affect “future child” who will be joining our family. I want him/ her to experience love all around. I want him/ her to experience a mutual compassion and respect in this house.
So, perhaps I go back to a “Caught being Kind” chart? The way I see it, I can try to make a positive game of it and make it a goal to do loving things to one another each day. Or, I can keep going the nagging route, where my children visit the corner every day– sometimes every hour– and lose minutes off their bedtime again and again and again. Which route has worked for you? How have you stopped the squabbling and built up the friendship between siblings?