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to ask how you deal with sharing in your house?

(29 Posts)
Clementiny Mon 20-Feb-17 22:34:38

I have DS who's 8, DD who's nearly 5 and DD who's 2. My approach to sharing is that you can have a few things that are solely yours - particularly sentimental or delicate things like a special present or collection of something - but that otherwise you should let your siblings share your things if you aren't using them yourself. The idea being that this kindness will then be repaid and everyone ends up with more things to play with.

DS, despite being the oldest, is actually the worst at sharing. He will squirrel things away and not use them himself rather than have his sister use them. Yet he is happy to share her things and the first to pipe up if he feels he's being hard done by. He received a playmobil set for Christmas that he played with on Christmas day and it's sat on a shelf in his bedroom since. DD is desperate to play with it but he just refuses. She's asked that I buy her the same one for her birthday but I don't see the point of having two when DS doesn't use his. DH thinks I'm wrong and that DS should be able to do what he likes with his property and that I should buy a second set. Aibu to think that DS should share it? DD is very careful and certainly wouldn't break it.

Bluntness100 Mon 20-Feb-17 22:41:30

I don't think they should be forced to share, no. I think you should talk to them about the benefits of sharing and reward them when they do, but ultimately it's their possessions and they should get to decide. I don't think kids should be brought up to believe they have a right to others possessions which is what you're teaching them.

Even my husband will say "can I use this" if it's specifically mine and vice Versa, it's just polite. Neither of us would ever say no, but We always ask " can I use your over night bag, can I borrow your iPod" whatever. So I agree with your husband. It's his decision and your kids shouldn't be taught to expect to have others things,

Edgarj7674 Mon 20-Feb-17 22:54:20

Maybe he classes his playmobil set as a "special present?"

user1477282676 Mon 20-Feb-17 22:57:35

I also don't think forced sharing is advisable. It sends weird messages.

Their toys are their toys...they don't HAVE to share. It gets messy when one child is particularly rough with things and breaks them or when they're older and their belongings are more personal.

I've never made mine share but they do play together and share of their own accord.

Both are generous with their friends. I encourage offering of treats...for example, chocolates or something and I was very proud when my youngest, aged 5 won an easter egg in the bonnet competition at school...when she came out that day, she opened it, broke it up and shared it with the two kids we walk home with. She didn't need telling to...

Clementiny Mon 20-Feb-17 22:58:50

But it is DS who expects to be able to have other people's things. DD asked politely and has respected him saying no by asking for her own. Yet he will demand to share her things and she'll let him. In which case, should I tell her not to share if he doesn't offer her the same privilege?

Grilledaubergines Mon 20-Feb-17 23:02:00

I don't think sharing should be forced. That's probably why he squirrels things away.

I think sharing needs to come 'from the heart' and it's something you need to not get involved in, let the children mAke these choices and negotiations with their siblings.

Floralnomad Mon 20-Feb-17 23:02:29

I think it's reasonable to say to him that if he won't share then he shouldn't expect his sister to do so , and I'd tell her the same . I'd also buy her the playmobil .

user1477282676 Mon 20-Feb-17 23:04:36

Well that's a drip feed OP. Your question is "What shall I do about my son who isn't as generous as his sister?" in reality.

Evergreen777 Mon 20-Feb-17 23:04:36

I would suggest to DD that next time DS asks to use one of her things, she offers it in return for being able to use the play mobile.

But also worth talking with DS about how he views the play mobile. If he's not playing with it himself, is that because he's made some wonderful creation that he can't bear to take apart? (And so doesn't want DD destroying either) In which case you could offer to photograph it, them help him dismantle it.

paxillin Mon 20-Feb-17 23:04:46

Give DD a bigger, better set and remind her he didn't share his if he always demands hers but won't give his?

Scholes34 Mon 20-Feb-17 23:05:22

Always ask, (nearly) always share, always respectful of other people's belongings. I wouldn't have expected them to share anything that might wear out/be used up, eg special pens, paper, craft stuff. Certainly no reason to not share Playmobil. Have had no issues with sharing, and they're still happy to share at the ages of 20, 18 and 16.

BackforGood Mon 20-Feb-17 23:05:48

I agree with others (and have 3 - now grown - dc with similar age gaps). Through their lives they have to share a lot. It is important they have the right to keep whatever they cnoose of their own, to themselves. Yes, I've always encouraged kindness and sharing, but dc need to have control over some things of their own.

S1lentAllTheseYears Mon 20-Feb-17 23:07:17

I don't think he should be forced to share it but I think it would be reasonable to tell him he can't have it both ways. So, yes, I think DD could be encouraged to politely say no next time he asks to use something of hers.

Buy her the set for her birthday if that's what she wants. Is it possible it's not even the set itself as much as just him having a bit of power over her by refusing to let her use it? Buying her own would difuse that.

My sister and I used to be deliberately awkward about stuff like this just for the hell of it!

MrsHathaway Mon 20-Feb-17 23:09:15

I think you're right to point out to him that he needs to share with his sister as much as she shares with him. But if he's taking steps to keep his things safe I think you have to honour that.

The solution you are proposing sounds a bit like you think it's family property and not his. If that is your attitude more generally (and if you are a generous person yourself then it might well be) then I think that's likely to make him defend his property more strenuously. You might have more luck if you offer to buy it off him or swap for something he'll actually play with (new Ninjago or similar?).

We have a cast-iron rule that when things are new you don't have to share them. We also have a rule that if you don't want to share something you need to be tactful/discreet about using it (eg not eating sweets noisily if you aren't going to offer them round). Beyond that things are a bit hazy.

Mine are 8,5,3 FWIW. DC3(3) still has that toddler thing about "I want it so it's mine" but he can also say confidently and accurately that something belongs to someone else if he doesn't want it. DC1(8) will share his smartphone (no SIM, so effectively a tablet) with DC2(5) but when he loses his patience we'll hear "This is my phone and I'll put it away if you keep doing that."

downwardfacingdog Mon 20-Feb-17 23:20:07

I don't force my DC to share. They do of there own accord when they are happy to e.g. if theyve been asked nicely, they happen to be feeling generous, or their sib has something they want in return. They seemed to have worked this pretty normal behaviour out naturally. If your DS continues not to share with DD then it's likely that as she gets older she will stop being so generous with her things and he'll soon learn.

Clementiny Mon 20-Feb-17 23:21:48

Sharing isn't forced here, his possession of things seems to be all important whether he's using them or not. It's tricky because I like that DD will share and she treats him how she'd like to be treated but he never returns the favour and I don't want to tell her to stop doing the right thing but also I see how he won't learn unless he gets a taste of his own medicine. It's likely that if I bought her the set he'd then get it down from the shelf and say he wasn't that fussed anyway so she could've played with his but now has wasted a birthday present on getting her own- just to take the shine off her getting her own.

MrsHathaway Mon 20-Feb-17 23:34:55

From his perspective, he might think she only wants it because it's his. He might be genuinely less fussed about her stuff than she is about his, so it looks like he's more selfish with his things than she is with hers.

I find my middle child (5.10) is really struggling at the moment with being a big brother as the youngest (3.3) becomes a real person IYSWIM. Your DD may reassess her generosity when your youngest starts making claims on her stuff!

AGrinWithoutACat Tue 21-Feb-17 03:39:50

In response to you last post - why not find her a complimentary set of playmobile - from the same character set (pirates - whatever) so that she has what she would like and if DS then decides to share they have one bigger set to play with together?

user1477282676 Tue 21-Feb-17 06:37:02

I tell you what I'd do on reflection...I'd just buy her the same one and make sure DS knew it was a reward for sharing HER things so nicely. I wouldn't wait till' her birthday either.

Astoria7974 Tue 21-Feb-17 06:47:50

I personally wouldn't let my DC get away with demanding to share his sister's things if he isn't willing to do so. You're just shoring up future resentment by allowing that. If he won't share his things, fine, but then I would go out of my way to ensure he isn't allowed to share other people's things. Generosity at that age needs to be taught otherwise you'll just be raising a selfish brat right.

Bluntness100 Tue 21-Feb-17 06:52:54

>>. In which case, should I tell her not to share if he doesn't offer her the same privilege<<<

No, of course not, why try to control this so heavily, let her decide, she should have the same rights to decide on her possessions as he does.

If he "pipes up" as she said no, just tell him that's fair enough, he sometimes doesn't share and it's up to them as individuals to make a decision on sharing and as people we don't have the right to have others stuff. Just let them get on with it. It's their stuff they decide.

Tanaqui Tue 21-Feb-17 06:58:23

And in the future I would buy anything you don't want to duplicate (generic lego, train set, trampoline, etc) as a joint Xmas present, and smaller or less shareable things individually. And sont buys bikes a as presents you want wanr to hand them down!

omnishamblesssssssssssssss Tue 21-Feb-17 07:04:30

It's his so his choice. But reward your DD for sharing and reward your son when he occasionally shares. Be positive rather then negative

omnishamblesssssssssssssss Tue 21-Feb-17 07:05:28

Anyting you want them to share must be given as a shared gift

CharlieDimmocksbosoms Tue 21-Feb-17 07:09:58

It maybe the older-younger problem where the younger child has previously got hold of his toys as a baby/toddler and been too young to respect them. What happens if a toy is broken by another sibling ( accidentally obviously) who replaces it?

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