Sibling Rivalry: Focused on Others
It is time to tie a bow around this series on Keeping Sibling Rivalry to a Minimum. I hope in the process of following this blog series, your home has become a bit more peaceful. As I said in the first entry of this blog series on sibling rivalry, this is one topic that we get asked about all of the time.
Sibling rivalry can suck the joy out of a family outing or meal and can make parents lose their cool and a few other things not mentionable on this blog. One of the reasons parents have more than one child is so that these siblings can grow up together enjoying each other and their parents. But sibling rivalry can make a parent ask, “where did we go wrong” or maybe at times, “do you think they switched kids on us at the hospital?”
This bow that I want to tie around this package of tips on Keeping Sibling Rivalry to a Minimum is one of our favorite topics. In fact, Tim wrote an entire book on this next point. Tip # 8 is:
8.) Minimize the competition and bickering among siblings by being a family that is focused on the needs of others.
I think we all know that when our eyes are focused upward and outward, we are much less concerned about ourselves. Much of sibling rivalry is fueled by jealousy, selfishness and envy. When a child is made aware of the needs of others and is mobilized to help meet those needs, then their “troubles” begin to diminish. What they thought was unfair and even equitable now seems abundant when compared to the poverty and needs of others.
Helping others can also give our children a sense of accomplishment and good will. They feel good about sharing and giving of themselves to others. And that selflessness eventually spills over to their siblings. Things that used to be so important to their dynasty now seem trivial and unnecessary.
Tim has written a life changing book called Raising Kids for True Greatness. He defines True Greatness as a “passionate love for God that demonstrates itself in an unquenchable love and concern for others.” Parents who are raising their kids for True Greatness instill in their hearts the qualities of Humility, Gratefulness, Generosity and a Servant Attitude.
Just think how a little bit of those would go a long way in Keeping Sibling Rivalry to a Minimum. Why not untie the children and start raising them for True Greatness. Sibling rivalry will become a thing of the past as you model, expect and encourage the traits of humility, gratefulness, generosity and a servant attitude.
I hope you have enjoyed this series on Keeping Sibling Rivalry to a Minimum. Wait a minute is that the kids arguing in the background? No, what am I saying. That is just WWF on the TV!
Keeping Sibling Rivalry to a Minimum
- Make sure you are not teaching your kids to bicker by the way you treat your spouse.
- Don’t compare siblings to each other in a negative way.
- Don’t require your children to compete for your attention.
- Don’t show preference of one sibling over another.
- We must help our children understand that life isn’t always going to be fair or equitable.
- Encourage harmony and honor in your home and never model or tolerate dishonoring behavior or speech toward a family member.
- We must love our children for who they are and go out of our way to delight in them individually.
- Minimize the competition and bickering among siblings by being a family that is focused on the needs of others.
Written by Darcy Kimmel