Resolving Sibling Conflict - How SecureTeen Can Help
It all starts with the birth of the second child and it continues forever. Even the parents with the most patience find themselves in agony. Nothing about the kids could make parents go this much crazy, but their unending rivalry. This is a common fact that siblings fight with each other no matter what gender they are.
From the very start when the fight starts from toys to parents’ attention, this rivalry makes its way into teenage as well. Although the purposes and preferences of the conflict change, the intensity goes on increasing. It is seen that as kids grow and their senses are developed, their needs and priorities determine their relationship with each other.
It is so frustrating and stressful to watch your teens fighting all the time. But sometimes it is hard to know how will the fight stop or should you barge in or not. The only hope remains, “they will understand once they grow”. Where there might be some understanding developed due to the sense of belongingness and love, there are scenarios that might make it the worst.
As Julie Sinclair shared her stressful experience with her kids, she said that she couldn’t wait for her son to move out because of the non-stop fighting with his sister. She gave us the worst picture of sibling conflict as she couldn’t keep both of her teens in one place.
She hadn’t gone out with her husband for so long because whenever they planned to eat outside, they had to take one kid each to different venues. The teens won’t take part in each other’s celebrations. They couldn’t stand each other in parties or events. Their fights even went up to cyberbullying, teasing, taunting and destroying each other’s stuff.
These kinds of sibling conflicts result in a stressful house where no one can relax. She said that their good memories were so rare that she hardly remembered them. Also, she complained that no one ever told them about the chances of this happening and it might be their fault that they produced the second one just after two years.
Where some say that sibling fights are normal and they should be managed in a better way as sibling conflicts are their way of getting along, others say that there is a reason behind these fights. Most of the time, it is jealousy.
However, parents can seek help from parental control apps such as SecureTeen to see what actually their kids are feeling. Nowadays kids share more on social media than in real life. Parents can know how they feel and what they are up to.
Moreover, mostly siblings don’t get along because they are so much indulged in their social lives. Parents can restrict their screen time so that they get to spend more time with each other. The more time they spend together, the more they will know each other better.
Is the Sibling Conflict Natural?
To some extent, it is seen that kids learn so less about their conflict with a sibling from the environment. Even this rivalry sometimes starts before birth, when the elder child comes to know that another child is coming. He feels that the new one is getting all the attention already.
Dr. Pamela Varaday, a clinical psychologist concluded that siblings being mean to each other is normal. She added, “sibling rivalry is mislabeled and needs to be reframed”. It is rooted in their biology to compete for fulfilling their needs with better resources. In this case, the resource is their parents.
Every child naturally wants more attention and better treatment from parents, and this leads to jealousy with the sibling. Normally, the birth of sibling conflict is jealousy because they feel they should get what the other one is getting.
Teens often develop other senses on the way to adulthood. Academic achievement, body image, smartness, intelligence, and these sort of things become the standard of conflict for them. And, if not managed properly, this can lead to a serious, unhealthy, and never-ending rivalry.
The Feeling of Not Being Parents’ Favorite.
No matter how much parents deny, it is seen that there is one favorite glorious child of parents that they love the most. As very well revealed in this article by HuffPost, that parents usually lie to their kids that all are their favorites.
When this lie grows, kids understand that their parents are never going to accept that they have one favorite. So, they take the situation in their hands and start hating the kid that seems to be the parent’s favorite.
In this article, research by Koger and her team has been discussed. It was conducted on the siblings with a difference of four years or less. It was observed that parents don’t tell about which child is their favorite. But the teens feel that the older one has the most preferences. Research also revealed that no matter what the number is, the children are always suspicious of their parents preferring the other kids.
The younger ones feel that all the “first” things happen with the older one, and he/she is given all the value and love by the parents. This conflict sometimes continues forever, and the younger ones spend their lives trying to prove that they also deserve equal love.
Parents, in this case, need to realize that their preferences are ruining their child’s emotional status. In their defense, they might say that their natures are different and that the older one or the youngest one is the best. But it doesn’t and shouldn’t make the rest of the kids feel lesser.
Children Learn from Their Surroundings
As it is stated in one of the articles at kidshealth.com that one of the reasons for sibling rivalry is their surroundings. When parents are seen fighting to each other all the time, having unending and unresolved conflicts, this makes the kids learn the same.
In most of the observations, it is also seen that teens often imitate their parents and that imitation doesn’t seem good in any way. They usually abuse and fight as their parents do. Some kids are also seen being physically abusive of each other.
Parents usually scold their kids for doing such things, but what they don’t understand is that they have learned it from them. Same way, in school, when teens see teachers being rude to them, they might not be able to take out their anger on them. But they take it out on their siblings at home.
The environment we give to our teens has a great impact on how they will treat others. Especially parents’ fighting increases the chances of kids treating others with hostility. Commonly, they will use the tactics and the arguments their parents use while fighting with their siblings.
Is Sibling Conflict Healthy?
Well, most of the parents are tired of their kids fighting all the time. They often complain about mental stress. But Carl E Pickhardt here believes that children need this sibling conflict and it is healthy for them.
He said that it is their way of getting along with each other. In a healthy sibling rivalry, they can test their powers, know their differences, and thus learn how to mediate their emotions. This rivalry results in healthy competitions and good learning.
Siblings rivalry is something that is part of kids’ lives. It might lighten up the environment when the family relationships are going quite dull. Sometimes sibling rivalry makes the parents talk to each other even when they are not.
As parents, you need to support your teens and be there to resolve their conflicts healthily. Instead of getting panicked and all angry, treat them nicely and show them how to make a healthy relationship. Because healthy relationships start from home.