Sibling Rivalries develop when parents do not give equal importance to their children; they may unconsciously create competition and comparison between their own children that may, later on, result in major differences amongst them. It is the duty of the parents to teach their kids how to respectfully handle interpersonal relationship amongst siblings.
Just like every problem has a solution so the sibling relation can also be enhanced through communication along with various ways being used by parents:
- Parents themselves should stop making comparisons between their children. They have to highlight the strengths of each child and accept their weaknesses without any criticism. They should not play the card of favouritism or take sides.
- Parents should spend individual attention to each child, by spending one to one time with each child and ask them about their personal likes and dislikes to make a special bond with the child. They can further guide them to describe the positive qualities of their siblings during a few of the interactions.
- Whenever possible, let them settle their own differences and if required the parents should sit and resolve the differences between the siblings, especially in a contest of inequality in terms of strengths and eloquence.
- Parents should never dismiss or suppress your children’s resentment or angry feelings. They should acknowledge and let the child guide how to ventilate that energy constructively.
- Make the older sibling feel important, and especially teach them the concept of sharing.
- Parents, first themselves need to express self-control and then help the child learn the same. Parents should focus more on the positive qualities of the child and appreciate for the same.
- Parents should boost the self-esteem of their child, avoid the use of sarcasm and demotivation by all means. Parents should not label one child as intelligent and other as dull, one as slow/stupid and the other as street smart.
- Parents should work as a team, and not as an individual. Parents should teach each kid to be responsible for their conduct and actions, and privileges come along with responsibilities.
- Parents should introduce the concept of empathy to their kids, in order to make them aware of the impacts of their own behaviours towards others.
- Parents should also teach their kids to be gender sensitive, and give respect to each other beyond that.
- Parents should teach their kids to set their limits; they are additionally required to teach their children to respect each other irrespective of the age, avoidance of physical as well as verbal abuse.
- When sibling rivalry becomes excessive in the form of physical or verbal violence parents should take the stand against the bully and if required take the help of a professional family counsellor.
Last but not the least, we all should work together in changing the perception of the society, believing in an equivalent treatment to both the kids, additionally, providing them with a fair share with their rights and make sure that they understand that in spite of differences between the siblings, this relationship is forever.