Sibling rivalry is very common among children. They fight and argue over small thingsโ€”clothes, toys, and food, among others. But are there more to these fights and arguments that we tend to overlook, thinking that they are just kids and they will get over it?

Here are 4 things that might be causing sibling rivalry in your home:

Jealousy

Children are born with different interests and talents. Some excel in academics, some in arts, sports, or other extra curricular activities. Jealousy arises when the successes of each child are treated differently. Parents must know that children are very sensitive and observant. No matter how small the achievement is, parents must recognize and acknowledge the efforts of each child. It would also be helpful to celebrate the success of one child as the success of all.

Competition

When siblings are good at the same thing, competition may arise and may result in each one asking, โ€œwhoโ€™s better at it?โ€ Parents have a huge role in helping the children understand that knowing who is better at doing something is not as important as knowing that everyone will be best at it if they work together, and help each other be their best.

Age Difference

Some households may have children who are 4-5 years apart. This age gap may cause some fights because their level of thinking, understanding and priorities are different. This is completely normal. Fights, if not avoided, can become minimal, when parents understand both sides and not blame anyone. It can be helpful if parents counsel the children together and let each child voice his/her concerns. This can clarify misunderstandings and help children understand each other.

Parental Praise

This may sound obvious but, children crave parental attention and praise. Parental praise if not given equally may result in envy and arguments among children. Every child in the house is worthy of praise and attention. If there is any child who needs special attention and care, parents must explain to the other children why.

These are just some of the causes of sibling rivalry. But if parents and children work together, there can be peace and harmony in the household, and the Spirit of the Lord shall dwell therein.

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