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Old 02-21-2013, 09:42 PM   #1
 
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Default Parents or anyone with sibling rivalry issues

Do your kids get along? Does one feel like the "bad kid"? My son is constantly in trouble but my daughter rarely is. Son is having huge issues with it. How do you handle this?
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Old 02-21-2013, 10:10 PM   #2
 
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My kids are almost 9 years apart in age, my daughter is 21 and my son is 12...and they adore each other. She is away at college right now but when she comes home...he acts like the queen of england has arrived! They have always been very close...but I think It's because of the age difference. Are yours close in age? I know most kids close in age will fight or argue over typical things like who's turn it is to do something or sharing toys or whos fault something was. I have 2 older sisters and we are close in age....and even as adults...we still will disagree about things. Not to mention, all the fighting and hair pulling we did growing up! Lol
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Old 02-22-2013, 01:02 AM   #3
 
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We've been very lucky in that our boys have never had any of the typical rivalry, they're three years apart and chalk and cheese yet have almost always got on. They have both, at different times, had issues that have got them into trouble - the oldest was a nightmare to live with form the age of about 8 to 13, then when he settled down the younger one took over, it's been difficult and I'm not sure we 'handled' it well at all, we just did what we could to get from day to day. One thing we did make a point of was never comparing them, never said why can't you be more like your brother and that sort of thing.
I'm sorry you're dealing with this, it's so hard.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:10 AM   #4
 
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One of mine gets into more trouble than the other. But they don't seem to notice or care. They are three years apart and very close. In my case, it's the older one, the girl, who is more often in trouble.

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Old 02-22-2013, 09:25 AM   #5
 
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My brother was the perfect child. I didn't get in trouble for really bad stuff, but I got busted for things like talking in class and, in high school, for skipping class (hey, I wanted to go to lunch with my friends!). My brother never did anything like that, plus he had been a sickly kid when we were little and totally parlayed that into being Mom's favorite even when we were in high school (well, and even now, as adults!).

I got over it. As an adult I can look back and see that my sister (who is nine years older than me, and eight years older than our brother) and I were very self-confident, extroverted, and made friends easily...all the stuff that makes being a teenager a bit less of a pain in the ass. My brother didn't have that - he wasn't as self-confident, he was an introvert so making friends was harder, etc.

While always being the kid in trouble and always being compared to my older siblings sucked, it doesn't matter anymore. My sister and I are very close. My brother and I are not so close, but I'd go to the mat for him in a heartbeat, and he'd do the same for me.

I guess I don't have any specific advice, but I can tell you that this probably won't scar your son (or daughter) for life.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:32 AM   #6
 
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My brother and I are just over a year apart, and were one grade apart in school. We were raised with more of a twins dynamic than an "older brother/younger sister" dynamic. Meaning, it was all about rivalry and competition and not about looking up to a big brother or protecting a little sister--we were equals. We were super close growing up. Although we fought constantly. He was social and outgoing, I wasn't. He ended up being a bit of a follower with some not-so-well-behaved friends, and became the "bad one". We always had to be opposites (if he liked something I had to hate it, and vice versa), and I became the"good one". I got straight A's and never got in trouble a day in my life. But, I must say I had more issues with it than he did--even though he got in trouble, he was cool and had friends, and I was a dork.

The best thing my parents did was not compare us at all. It was all about us as individuals, and about how much effort we put in.
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Old 02-23-2013, 01:14 AM   #7
 
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Thanks for the replies. Tomorrow I'll post more about last nights big fight and hopefully you can maybe try to help. My son is upset and saying "she never gets in trouble and I always do!". It's not helping that DD is hitting the teenage "I'm so over my little brother" phase. They're 2 1/2 years apart and have always been close so her starting to distance herself from him is exacerbating the situation.
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Old 02-23-2013, 05:09 AM   #8
 
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^ I can relate to that feeling.

My siblings are 7-9 years older than me. I was always the closest to my oldest brother. He took care of me, and assumed the role of 'second dad'. When he started dating, and spending less time with me, I was crushed. When he married and move across the US, I was devastated. I cried for weeks. I was only 11 so it was still hard for me to understand.

I never had rivalry with him, and he rarely got in trouble. He had a lead foot and make a few teen mistakes. Otherwise he was a straight A student, and pretty good kid. It was the middle that revolted, and fought with me non stop. When I fully reached the years of my teen angst, and started revolting against the social norms, we got along brilliantly.

Even now in our 30's and 40's we have moments, but different situations always bring us back around. It's perfectly natural.
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Old 02-23-2013, 03:13 PM   #9
 
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I'm not so worried about their relationship. They always get over arguments quickly. It's my relationship with my son that I fear is being affected. He says things like "I'm just an idiot", "It's hard to not get in trouble", "I'm just stupid". It makes it even worse thyat he doesn't do well in school and struggles there too. In fact he is in the middle of being evaluated for a learning disability. So he feels like he can't do anything right, where as his sister gets straight Bs, participates in extra-curriculars, and is rarely in trouble with me.

So here's what happened the other night. I asked the kids to help me out by taking out the trash and recycling. I hear them in the garage bickering back and forth (which happens quite a bit these days) so I tell them to lose the attitude with eachother. They continue to fight anyway so I call them in the living room. I ask why they were fighting and son immediately starts whining at me. I tell him to stop whining and talk normal. He proceeds to interrupt and argue with me instead of simply explaining what happened. I finally get the whole story out of them and reprimand them both for fighting over something that could have been easily resolved if they would stop with the attitude towards eachother, etc. After I'm done son still looks really upset. I ask him what's still wrong and he again starts whining and raising his voice at me and starts in on how he's upset because he's in more trouble than his sister. He wasn't. They were both reprimanded, no one was punished. But because I also reprimanded him for speaking to me like that he felt like he was more in trouble. Then he starts in on "She's never in trouble and I always am". This happens quite a bit. The fact of the matter is that's true. She doesn't act the way he does. She never raises her voice to me or talks to me in a disrespectful way where as my son is constantly doing that. She doesn't get in trouble at school where as it's always something with my son. She goes where she says she's going where as he will forget to check in if he goes from one friend's house to another, leaving me to scour the neighborhood looking for him. Those are just a few examples of the differences in their behavior.

I try not to compare them and choose my words wisely with him so I don't make it worse but frankly she just doesn't act the way he does or make the poor choices he does. How do I get him to understand this without making him feel even more like the bad kid?
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