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102

A large part of the population can be counted on to tell you why you should do exactly what they did, and all the downsides to whatever you're doing that they didn't do. You might even have tendencies to do this yourself. no children? Shame you'll be all alone when you're old. 5 children? Shame you'll never be able to give each of them the time and money ...


68

I think your instincts of jealousy are spot-on. My daughter did this starting when her little brother arrived home from the hospital, and every time she felt like he was getting more of Mama's attention, out came the verbal knives. Our fix was to schedule special one-on-one time with her when we could. And when things were just too crazy to carve very ...


34

People are not robbed of choices they were never given to begin with. Asking two children open-ended "which would you like?"-style questions is a recipe for disaster if you don't have the resources to satisfy both of them. Instead, ask one child: Which would you like? If you know that child will have a hard time choosing, make it a leading question: ...


20

First of all, recognize there is a difference between having a favorite, and engaging in favoritism. I think having a favorite is somewhat unavoidable, unless your children all happen to have personalities that mesh equally well with yours. When having a favorite becomes problematic is when you let it affect your words and actions toward your children. ...


20

There are a couple of things going on here, and both will probably be due to attention. You said that mum finds it difficult. That means that she probably reacts slightly. This means that your daughter knows that she can say something that: Gets noticed. Gets a reaction. Brings attention. All attention, positive or negative is attention to a child. If ...


18

Have you considered that your son may be "deliberately" forcing the conflict? I put "deliberately" in quotes, because it probably isn't conscious or intentional, but doesn't seem like any coincidence that he always places you in a situation where you have to pick sides. You may want to institute a consistent rule --oldest picks first, youngest picks first, ...


16

While I definitely agree professional help would be valuable, I would also suggest considering your opportunity to be a role-model to your brother. Spend time with him. Invite him to go with you to do fun things that don't involve the computer. Engage him in loving brotherly conversation, so that he trusts you and becomes more open to share what is going on ...


16

I don't want to discourage you, but we tried... and tried.. and our girl (18mo at the time) thought our newborn was awesome when we visited mommy in the hospital the day after. She did not think it was awesome that the baby was coming home with us. And that mommy spent all day with the new baby. There was no consoling her at all. She was completely upset ...


15

Are you paying rent to your mother? If you are paying rent, you should ask for a reduced rent since you are no longer getting your own room. Is there a basement? Another room on the main floor - something like an office or a den? Consider moving to one of these rooms. If you are not paying rent, you are unfortunately going to have to abide by her rules. It'...


15

I handle this simply. When the older child complains about work that the younger child doesn't have to do, I tell her that her younger sister does the same work that she did when she was her younger sisters age. If complaints continue after that, I remind her that she also has privileges that her younger sister doesn't, and if she would like to be "fair", ...


14

Your sister has a real problem. This is the kind of behaviour that she should have left behind at preschool. Is she violent towards others or just you? If she has more general violence issues then I suggest talking to a professional counsellor or therapist. Your parents ought to be doing this of course, but if they won't then you may have to step in. She is,...


13

My brother and I share a birthday, 3 years apart (by coincidence, not by our parents' choice). With all due respect to those saying that neither child gets their "special day," I can attest that sharing a birthday with a sibling, particularly one close in age, does not make either birthday less valuable. Both kids will grow up accepting that their shared ...


13

Whether it causes resentment or not depends on how much say the child has in the matter. Kids often borrow their older sibling's clothing on their own. A lot of handing down happens even without parental intervention, as one child starts to grow out of something, they are more and more willing to lend it to their younger sibling, until it ends up de facto ...


13

I take it you have a cell-phone with recording capabilities? Maybe your parents do as well? Start using them. When you have caught enough of her threats on film, let her go ahead and call the police. They will tell her if she doesn't stop calling for such nonsense, they will write out a ticket or might even haul her in to show her what calling the police for ...


12

Frankly, if you have economic reasons for only having one - ie, you're concerned two will be too much of a burden financially - then one sounds like a good plan to me. Kids are really, really expensive. Regardless of the evidence that may or may not exist on the matter, in your personal situation it seems like one child with a happy stable family will be ...


11

Maybe he needs to try something less "sportsy" and more "artsy". Maybe he would enjoy getting involved in theater or taking some art classes or joining a children's choir or piano lessons? If his sisters excel in athletics then finding something completely different might be the push he needs to distinguish himself. If athletics is a priority in his ...


11

Ultimately raising your siblings is your parent's responsibility, not yours. Helping them out is a nice gesture, but eventually you will move out and they won't be able to depend on your help. The solution depends a bit on how much of an obligation you have to help out. If part of your living-at-home arrangement is giving rides, etc. then you need to do ...


11

At a slumber party, the number of attendees is usually more restricted than otherwise — there is a bit less space, a longer time commitment for the hosts, and the amount of noise generated by guests seems to increases exponentially instead of arithmetically... especially at 2am. It's possible that the age difference played some part in the decision; perhaps ...


11

We have no way to know the truth of this situation so my advice is: Set a time and a place for a meeting with your parents so you can talk it out. Your sibling should not be there and TV and so on should be off. Go in knowing that it is more likely a misunderstanding than a declaration of lack of love or caring. Do not accuse them of anything. Sit with your ...


10

It really depends on two main factors. The children's comfort level with bathing with others. I stopped bathing with my siblings around age 7, because I became aware of the idea of privacy and I felt it was important. YOUR comfort level with it. The kids won't be developmentally harmed by bathing separately. My son (age 6) now bathes without his sisters. ...


10

My perception is that a child's social adjustment is more complex than just how many siblings they have. For example: there are articles discussing how Only Children are More Successful while you can find evidence to support the contrary. I believe most of these types of articles are anecdotal generalizations in both directions, though. Children are ...


10

If it makes you feel any better to know this, kids with siblings ask this. In fact I recently had my nearly 8 year inform me that he is ready for another sibling in about a year, for what reason, I don't know. My 10 year old love babies, so he has wanted one all along since my youngest was born, 3 years ago. My older two never wanted any. I adopted them, ...


10

To be honest, I can see your fifteen-year-old daughter's point of view. Why should she want to meet this grown-up that hasn't mattered in her life up to now? What positive change in her life would result from that? She's probably interested in a lot of other things right now, being a teenager; meeting unknown family members probably sounds like a chore to ...


9

I was better in school and music than my younger siblings, but my brother always skunked me in athletics and strategy games, one sister is a much better artist, and my other sister was always able to make friends more easily. Does it hurt to have a younger sibling be better at something than you are? Sure, a little. However, there's not much a parent can ...


9

First of all, I was that 13 year old kid. I was always on the computer or playing video games. So, some of these questions are me vicariously wishing that I had had an older brother who cared. See, I really really want you to come at this the right way. If you try to get him to stop using the computer or TV "because it's unhealthy" you will make him want ...


9

Kids mess up. A lot. If it were possible to do something for a month that would make them stop messing up, they wouldn't need to live with you anymore. Kids messing up isn't a sign that you're doing something wrong. It's a sign that you're dealing with a normal human kid. Parenting is raising a successful 35 year-old. It's a job with a very long view. ...


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