Protecting your younger sibling from a bully not because they feel unsafe but because nobody else irritates them like you do. Fighting over trivial matters and not talking for days until one day you suddenly pop your head through the bedroom door to ask if they want to steal a midnight snack together.
Telling your sister, she looks like a potato even if she’s looking pretty. Advising after you’re done making fun of them. Siblings share one of the weirdest yet the most amazing love-hate connection.
The beauty of this bond reflects later in adulthood through unconditional support for each other in times of despair. The times that siblings spend together fighting, laughing, pranking, and teasing each other, strengthens the bond. As parents, you must know how to improve relationship between brother and sister.
Besides encouraging a positive mindset and behavior in your children, parents must also curb negative company and things they pick up in their growing years. However, keep in mind that the efforts you put in are silent and effortless. The following are a few things you can adopt to ensure a strong sibling bond.
Let Your Children Grow Close from the Start
With an expected addition to the family, many parents are overly cautious when it comes to their other children interacting with the new one. They treat the newborn like a glass doll, but in reality, the baby is stronger than they think.
A gentle kiss or a random act of affection from its siblings is unconsciously registered in the baby’s mind. The sibling bond experiences its first immature and fragile phase that is the beginning of a deep, lifelong connection.
Let your children welcome the new one with excitement and enthusiasm rather than hushed voices and stealthy steps. You will notice that your children will start viewing the baby as their responsibility after they get over the fascination with it.
It’s Bonding Time
Other than spending time with family, siblings bond significantly when being in the exclusive company of each other. Sibling bonding activities like playing imaginary games, telling each other stories, and generally keeping each other company can have a significant impact on their relationship. Let them be on their own. Even if they have arguments, don’t intervene unless it’s necessary.
Instead of keep checking on them, be assured that your children will learn to communicate, build confidence, trust, and a sibling connection. However, forcing them to talk or interact and play together all the time may have an adverse effect.
Siblings’ relationships are spontaneous. Giving them personal space will provide them with a sense of privacy and individuality. Isn’t it lovely to watch your kids enjoy their time together?
Share Your Own Sibling Experiences
Have your children ever been all excited to hear another embarrassing story about their uncle or wanting you to narrate their favorite memory of you as a child? Many children are ecstatic to learn about when their parent was not a parent but a child, like themselves.
Children look up to their parents more often than we realize. No behaviors or words go unnoticed by the curious mind of a young one. So if you’re under constant scrutiny, let it be for the best. Conform your words and habits such that you encourage a strong sibling bond.
This includes frequent meet-ups with your child’s aunts and uncles, talking fondly about your time with them, and tell your children about the sibling bonding activities you indulged in.
Allow Your Children to Look After Each Other
Kids love participating in anything and everything going on around the house. It’s often annoying and meddlesome for parents, but we must also recognize that a child’s restlessness lies in their desire to be a contributor. In that case, why not share a bit of your responsibility to look after your child? Let the elder siblings take charge and help the younger ones.
Take, for instance, if your younger child faces difficulty while studying, let the elder child help them out. Let them come up with ideas for school projects while you facilitate them.
If either of them gets hurt, let the other siblings come forth to help. Not only do happy moments encourage a strong sibling bond, but hardships also play an essential role.
Siblings Are Your Best Friends Forever
A secure connection originates from the belief that your siblings are your first best friend. Let your children engage in sibling bonding activities as two best friends would. This decreases the child’s need to be validated by outsiders. Children will never feel socially awkward or out-of-place when they know they have a constant in life.
In time, they’ll learn to prioritize their siblings over other best friends. Siblings are the one best friend that is not seasonal or complement a phase of your life. They are there for everything forever.
Teach Your Children to Respect Each Other
The narrow age gap and the frankness between siblings often blur the lines of respect amongst siblings. Encouraging a strong sibling bond also includes teaching your children to respect each other’s privacy, individuality, and identity. Like every other relationship, love is accompanied by respect for the other.
This practice will instill in your child a general concept of respecting others as well. It also makes your child more considerate and sensitive towards their siblings and develops compassion for them. This drives them to take the initiative to support and assist their sibling. Also, the younger sibling should not be reprimanded to respect elders only because they are older.
Addressing Sibling Rivalry
Children are often overcome by an immature feeling of possessiveness and jealousy associated with their siblings. The illogical nature of these sentiments is mostly the reason that parents overlook this aspect.
However, it is highly important to take account of these feelings that can significantly manifest into grudges unconsciously over the years.
Sibling rivalry can be defined as the partiality that a child feels on the arrival of a new sibling. This certain mindset makes them view each action as unfairness towards them. Parents can encourage a strong sibling bond by learning to overcome the sibling rivalry in its early stages rather than later on.
As elders, you need to effectively assume your role in contributing to a strong sibling bond. Parenting demands not only a high level of composure and affection but also a sense of awareness and responsibility in the holistic growth of your child. The bond that you build amongst your children is a mirror of values and a reflection of your upbringing.