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Give that back, it’s mine! I’m telling…MOM! Stop bugging your sister! Go to your rooms right now!

Does this sound familiar in your home? Sibling rivalry is a huge problem in an increasing number of homes across the country. As divorce rates increase and more parents are forced to work, children are given less attention. This is directly linked to the amount of control parents have over their kids. There is a far greater chance that a child will not listen to a parent who is busy all of the time. When less control is implemented is when the arguments and fighting begin.

Even in double parent households children begin the battle for attention at the earliest age. One child will excel leaving the other child feeling alone and unwanted. This starts the feud and there is no way of stopping the need for attention. Sibling battles can break out for no apparent reason at all except the need for attention, be it positive or negative. Children will find ways of making each other look bad. In some severe cases these battles may become physically harming and this is when it has gone to far. Name-calling and petty arguments are one thing and should be dealt with easily. However, these problems quickly evolve when the children see that they need to be more drastic to get noticed. No one really wants to fight and yell, the sad part is kids feel it is the only way for them to be noticed.

Parents must realize that yelling back and sending your kids to their room is what they want you to do. Ignoring the argument is the best answer, except in severe cases. Eventually the children will realize that their fighting is just making everyone tired and they will stop. Of course before the rivalry magically disappears it will worsen without a doubt. When you begin ignoring them, you kids will try even harder to get your attention. This will be done with bigger fights and louder screams. You as a parent must be strong and not respond, because in the long run that is the best solution to the problem. Meanwhile, don’t ignore your kids altogether, just their fights. Begin group activities that force the kids to get along. In this way you will be training your kids to work together without them even knowing it.

Sibling rivalry can be stopped just as easily as it starts, but you must be dedicated to obtaining a peaceful household. So when the yelling gets out of hand and your kids are running wild, there is one important thing to remember: Above all you must pay attention to your children and care for them because they are your responsibility since you decided to become a parent. The fighting will subside as time goes on and if you can survive the early years of rivalry then the future will produce a family that takes care of each other.