My two older daughters, 4 and 5; almost 5 and 6. They seem to always be in competition with eachother. My 4 year old wants to copy and do everything my 5 year old does. I cant seem to get it though her head that she doesnt have to do everythig her sister does. She bases alot of what she does, says and wants on how my 5 year old does, says or wants things. What can I do??
Also, my 5 year old seems to think that she HAS to be first at everything. If I ask one of them to do something for me, she thinks SHE has to be the obe to do it. She rubs in my 4 year olds face that she can do things that my 4 year old cant; sometimes she bullys her, as sibilings do- i get, but always having the same conversation that her being the oldest gives her the role of teaching and showing and helping is the way to act. My kids are well respected, well mannered and easy to handle, loving children, but as a parent we have some concerns. Anybody have any advice?
Oh I am only chuckling a little bit. Ugh. I'm the mom of two boys 15 months apart and they are now 7 and 8. Oh, how many times have I said "it's not a competition boys"? Thousands. Millions? Maybe.
If you get a good answer on how to stop that, let me know!!''
One thing I make sure that I do is do my very best not to encourage it. I give equal compliments and attention. I'm positive to both kids in terms of feedback.
They are going to start 'real' school soon enough and I was always careful about making sure that I didn't glop them into the same thing all the time. Even though they COULD be on the same soccer team . . . I never would put them on the same one. (did it once when they were probably your girls age now and the second time I had to walk onto the field myself to seperate them . . . I knew it was the last time they'd play on the same team). They play baseball, and I have them on different teams. They each have their own friends. When someone comes to my house for a play date, they all play together some of the time but them whomever the playdate came for (Mary is daughter X's friend but friendly with your daughter's sister) or whose friend it is from school gets to have some play time in which they do not have to include their brother.
I would say that my boys do really love each other but I often play referee.
Today this is what I tried: they had to write 3 things they liked doing with each other and 3 things that they liked about the other and present it. They had to sit on the couch and hold hands for 5 minutes. They had to go to their rooms and think about how they could be nicer to their brother. I'm not kidding. We did those things just today. LOL It was one of 'those' days.
One other thing we did -- my husband and i-- was that we took turns winning. Oh, it is X's turn to win. Now it is your turn to win. Some games you can control the outcome secretly and we just did this to get them used to the fact that sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. Get used to it!
Okay, I realize this probably isn't too helpful but I'm deliriously tired after a long day of 'mothering' and just wanted to give some thoughts and tell you that I feel your pain
Right now they are spending a lot of time together. Once big sister goes off to school things should begin to change a bit. By the way in no way should they ever be in the same grade level!
I think that the other thing you work on is fair play. My brother and I are 18 months apart. We fought all the time and yet get along very well today.
And if you think its bad now - wait till they are teenagers! Anyway, its all about how you play the game. They will have their competitions. It will drive you nuts. But its about how you play the game - not how it ends. That, to me, is what you want to stress/teach over and over and over.
Oh goodness. I hadn't even thought about what it will be like when they are teenagers. . .
I think that is great advice to stress playing fair and 'doing your own best' verses how the game ends up.
I've found that my boys are also great fans of one another. They will watch each other's activities and cheer them on. You'll probably notice as they take on seperate lives as they do when they get older--- that they also become supportive in their own way of each other. Again, I'd not keep them in every activity together.
Being a good winner is as important as being a good loser. Help them with this concept and if you need ideas on how to do that, let me know.
Well, good luck. Sandman . . . any more tips for two brothers who greatly love each other but can be at each other's throats are greatly appreciated.
I think that from some of your other posts that you have it pretty well covered. Only other thought I have is that kids do like to wrestle, etc. Do you have those soft foam bats that allow you to beat the heck out of someone and never hurt them? They could go at eachother for hours (always under your supervision) and probably wear each other out. But I don't think I would use it as a way to vent anger. That's when they go on a long run with you and talk it out while running for example.
I also think the best thing you do is when they lose it over a game is to just pick it up (till they cool down) and put it away. Its finding the games they can have fun with and not get over competitive in. Ever tried horseshoes or darts (not with the sharp points)?
My boys are funny. They actually handle winning and losing fine. But one or the other will get so caught up in 'winning' that they get hyper focused and become fixated on their plan to win even if it causes the other to cry. Hard to exactly explain unless you see them in action. Then they fight if they don't get to be the caller on a game enough or if they are it too often.
We have these big balls that we took air out of so they don't hurt and my boys power throw these at each other. What joy they find in that, I have no idea. But they sure do as does every single boy that comes to our house. We have water guns and as long as we don't hit the eyes, they are good for battle without causing any harm. We do have some foam batts . . . hm. I'll have to think what they can do with that. They have a lot of fake light saber fights and they are allowed to wrestle a bit on our trampoline. Man, they love it. Again, I don't get it. But I just go with it. I know my one son does need the input to his nervous system. Our OT creates situations in which a child can get it so that trampoline and a little brother sure come in handy. :>)
Ya know what makes my kids crazy? Electronics. What a thorn in my side. It wouldn't surprise me if that wii didn't end up tossed out on the front lawn sometime by me. All kids have these in today's age and really---- I have a child that I need to be 'socially connected' as you know so we go with current things kids are into to keep him that way. I limit time with it. And it gets taken away often. That is a big stressor in our house. I'm working on a new strategy in which they EARN wii time.
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