Sibling aggression

(5 Posts)
Sunflower30 Thu 07-Apr-16 09:22:05

Hi, I'm not sure if I have posted this in the right place but I hope someone might be able to help. My 15 month old ds won't leave his older brother alone! It seems every interaction they have starts or ends with aggression. He has always been a bit rough from around 8 months old, he started scratching and clawing at whoever was holding him. I hoped it was a phase but it's becoming a real problem. He still does occasionally scratch at us all, and bite at times. But his aggression now seems directed at my (almost) 4 year old. I say aggression, it's not really, as he doesn't seem angry, he seems like he enjoys it. I think it might be the reaction as, understandably, my eldest always squirms/moans/gets upset. I try and be on top of their interactions as much as I can but if anything, that compounds the problem as its getting a reaction from both of us. I have tried just blocking his hand and saying 'no' firmly, I've tried blocking his hand and otherwise ignoring what he's doing, I've tried distracting him, this works temporarily but not for long. Now my eldest is taking random swipes at his brother, and I do feel this has its roots in the constant injuries he's getting first. I know all siblings squabble but mine don't seem to get any mutual enjoyment out of each other at all and it makes me sad and frustrated for them. Thanks in advance

QuiteLikely5 Thu 07-Apr-16 09:27:50

My youngest do get physical probably in about 50pc of their interactions but this is reducing all the time as the youngest gets older.

A little 'hit' just seems to be his way when he doesn't get what he wants and he's been that way for a long time my others were never like this and I don't understand why he does it but I have put it down to normal development. It's also very hard to get him to say sorry too although he's getting better at that! He clearly thinks he is justified in his actions!

I'll take it you trim his nails so his scratching is not very effective?

Sorry I don't think I've been much use!!

Sunflower30 Thu 07-Apr-16 10:00:55

Thankyou, it's a relief to hear I'm not alone! And I am hopeful things might calm down naturally in our case too. My eldest starts school in September so maybe that will help to break the cycle, until then we will persevere. His nails are trimmed, thankfully he rarely manages to cause proper injuries!

InsaneDame Thu 07-Apr-16 10:08:00

I've had the same - I have two DSs, one 7yo and one 2yo. From the age of about 12mo to around 19mo the youngest LOVED to hit, scratch, pinch and pull the hair of the eldest and it was all down to the dramatic reaction he got from his brother (who is generally a drama queen anyway!) He has never been like it to anyone else though. I started by saying 'no, don't scratch/pinch/hit (name), it hurts him and makes him cry'. This of course was ineffectual as a toddler that young doesn't like to listen to words or they don't have the understanding we want them to! So I addressed the eldest reaction and told him it will be hard but if his little brother does anything to hurt him he will only carry on because he likes the noises he makes so to get up quietly and come to me and I will address it...... It worked! When the reaction was taken away the little one lost interest.

Now they are both a bit older the youngest sometimes launches himself and rolls around on his brother which usually indicates he wants to play fight - which they both enjoy!

(In the middle of the phase my Mum told my eldest to hit his brother back and he would soon stop...... I didn't agree with this and my eldest couldn't do it anyway as too sensitive and wouldn't hurt a fly let alone his baby brother!)

Sunflower30 Thu 07-Apr-16 10:31:32

I will definitely try this! I really do think it's his reaction that he enjoys. My eldest is also I bit of a drama queen, he doesn't handle any minor injury/incident well, never mind when he feels the victim too! He tends to panic now before his brother makes contact! I think half the time my youngest is making an attempt at rough play but is a bit young to know the boundaries. I agree, I want to avoid retaliation if I can. Thanks

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