AIBU to be so over sibling rivalry? (bit sweary sorry)(28 Posts)
Gahhhh it's fucking relentless . My 2 DDs (6 & 9) are just complete and utter gobshites to each other. "Muuuum DD1 said this", "Muuuum DD2 hit me", "Muuuum DD1 did this", "Muuuum DD2 is annoying me" aaaaaargh!!!
Don't get me wrong, they are the sweetest, most caring & kindest kids to others, it's just each other they are fucking evil to. The constant bickering, pettiness, spitefulness, telling tales, fighting and general attitude they have towards each other is really getting me down now . I'm just so sick and tired of hearing my own voice constantly trying to get them to be at least civil to each other. I've tried reasoning with them, shouting at them, sending them to their (separate) bedrooms, having individual quality time with them, getting them out of the house & organising fun activities I think they'd both enjoy but they're still complete & utter shits to each other. I feel more like a referee than a mum somedays .
Anyway, sorry about the rant - just needed to offload (it's been a loooong day).
I'm in the same situation! It actually really gets me down, especially in the school holidays. Honestly I could cry when the bickering starts. Sorry I have no good advice but do have sympathy!
Mum used to just ignore us unless blood was drawn. Just let us fight it out between us
I suggest that. Just zone out
Btw I still bicker with siblings now... it doesn't end
I don't know. I wish there was something that could be done. I have two boys who continually fight, I fight with my sister and my husband fights with his brother. I would love to see if anyone has ideas.
A friend of ours stopped her two doing this by putting some rules in place for reporting incidents to her (as she put it)
She put up a template for them to follow on the fridge
Names of others present
Who was hurt
Then they had to write the whole story out and do it twice so they could keep a copy for their records.
They would get so involved in trying to write it all out they gave up telling on each other. When they tried she'd refer them to the A4 sheet on the fridge and tell them to write it out.
I thought it was clever. I didn't try it mine were already over the tattle tailing by then.
It was my leaving home that fixed it for me & my sister. We fought all the time as kids but we're really close now we don't live together.
Not immediately helpful I know, OP, but at least things might be better one day.
Be unspeakably horrible to them both or somehow traumatise them, then they'll have something to bond over?
Oh and don't apologise for being sweary. Not on Mumsnet
Mine are the same age as yours. The petty squabbling is so boring. I send them to their room together regardless of who is the perpetrator. They usually get bored after a while or are united against me by the injustice of being banned from the computer. With mine I think it's a power struggle for attention. So I draw the lines between us, they are the children, we are the adults, there is no superior child category... So no need to stand on the sibling.
I think squabbling is part of the fun of siblings, I still enjoy a good bicker with my adult siblings. You develop a lot of confidence and wit from normal sibling competition!
I'm very glad that my two were very close in age and size and so we could leave them to sort out their differences between them 90% of the time. Our interventions tended to be to tell them both of for making too much noise or mutually hurting each other. Much harder when one of them isn't able to hold their ground and so you really need to police situations.
OP if you ignore your two will the bigger one likely hurt the little one? I do think that a lot of the 'muum' is more about getting your attention than whatever the fight was about. If you feign being bored do you think they would do it less?
I agree with coughingchildren, ignore them, don't go down the micromanagement route. They're probably learning some good life skills somewhere in the process.
I send them to separate rooms, is that an option?
Also, I don't act on tale telling unless it's about someone getting hurt or seriously damaging property (or a serious risk of either of those things happening). And I remind them of that, frequently.
I find getting the older one some extra exercise helps a lot, she needs much more than her little sister and is much better behaved when she gets it. But it's obviously tricky when there's one adult and two kids...
I too feel your pain. Mine are 5 and 8. I also have another two who are nearly 2 and 6 months. I was so worried about having them so close together, but the babies are lovely together! It's the bigger 2 that grind my gears!
I LOVE Squinkles idea and will put it in place tomorrow! (I've tried everything else. Though I have to say, keeping them super busy all half term instead of trying to have some relaxing chill out days at home, did help!)
Imback Won't your 8yo write reams and your 5yo end up crying because she can't write as fast, with the 8yo adding little passive aggressive digs at your 5yo's spelling, handwriting and punctuation? Because that's what would happen here...
I deal with mine by separating them to their separate rooms every time they start. Same thing every time. I'm not remotely interested in who did what, I don't engage, just ask (then put in nec!) then in to their rooms. It works tbh. I cannot abide fighting, it's the worst thing about parenting for me.
But what if they don't have separate rooms to go to? My 3 boys share so I'd have one in their room, one in my daughters room and one in mine. And two would moan about the one in their room because they'd be playing with toys/lego/whatever.
Thanks all - glad to see I'm not the only one struggling with this. It really does get me down when they are being so vile to each other though . It really does sometimes feel as though they genuinely hate each other .
I do send them to their rooms which works for the time they are in their rooms but as soon as they're out & in each others company again the shittiness just starts straight back up again.
I have tried ignoring but I must admit, I'm not very good at this - I do tend to over engage as it really does drive me insane. Perhaps I need to work on my ' go and tell someone who gives a shit' skills.
As for leaving them to get on with it nooka I fear it would be my eldest coming off worse in any fisticuffs lol - the little one is far more feisty than her big sis (Napoleon complex anyone?)
When mine did the 'muuuuuum, Fred just called me bum face' stuff, I used to say very calmly, 'thank you for telling me'.
Keep being breezy. Distract if possible.
Also, big up any positive interaction between them. If I want to lay it on really thick, I big them up to another adult and let then 'overhear'.
squinksie that is inspired!
I'm so going to implement an incident form!
my aunt had two sons who were horrendous for this..one day she just decided to intervene at last resort and not to referee constantly. luckily her two sons have grown into the most caring, kind and loyal men! dreading this stage myself though
4foxsake my younger child turned out to usually be the instigator. We didn't realise until I happened to observe them when they couldn't see me and watched dd crawl over to ds's train set and pull it apart, hit him with a bit of track and then start screaming. If I hadn't watched it I would have assumed he hurt her for wrecking his toys and told him off. After that we watched them a bit more closely and noticed it was often ds who got the worse of things.
After we stopped automatically intervening for dd things seemed to get more even and I stopped worrying so much. I think that letting the3m sort out their differences helped their relationship, but they have always been pretty close to be honest. Not like my dad who pushed his little sister down the stairs!
An incident form!! I love it!!
Too bad mine are 24, 22 & 17 and now get along very well. I will remember this wonderful idea for the grandies though.
Squinkies that is perfect. Wish I'd had it years ago.
We used something from a TV show (Supernanny), where the offenders had to sit, separated, on the stairs until they gave each other permission to get off the stairs. I was always surprised at how long it took for them to be able to cooperate enough to do this.
We also had a book where they wrote down what happened, why it didn't work, and what they could have done better - it did help, but I think a formal incident report would have been more effective. We stopped using it when eldest DD refused to get off the stairs because she was writing in the book - a story about the "evil younger DD who...blah blah etc" and said youger DD was pitching a fit about the story.
I still have the books . DS 20 and DD18 still get into it at times. DD22 doesn't engage, as she is half a world away and only visits via facetime.
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