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School-aged/Preschooler Sibling Relationships
My five year old daughter, who normally wants to play with her 3 year old brother, wants to exclude him and put him down when her girlfriends and even boyfriends are around.
For the last two years he has been included in their games. He is an easy to get along kid who everyone likes. And he will play dress up or whatever they are playing.
I don't want him to be excluded. He naps a couple hours in the afternoons so my
daughter does have time to play with a friend when he's sleeping. I've explained that
I want everyone to play together. I've given my daughter brief time outs
with me. But to no avail. I'm hoping someone can give a little insight into the needs
and drives of 5 year olds as it's been a long time since I've looked at a child
I try to schedule dual playdates (a friend for each) or I set aside time to do something special with my daughter when my son has someone over. Nothing big, just a board game or something like that. Anon
Imagine that you had a best friend that you could never be alone with -- your husband (or hers) always had to be there, except for random two hour breaks (the nap) that could end at any time. How would you feel? Would the quality of closeness between you be the same?
Obviously it's more work for you to have to amuse your son when your daughter has a friend over, but I think you'll find that if you give your daughter some choice in the matter, she may want her brother to join her after a while. That's my experience anyway -- the older kids love to kick the younger ones out, and then after a while they want them to come back. nelly
I have a 10 year old son and a 4 year old daughter who seem to be interacting with one another in a rather negative manner. They do get along on occassion but the main concern/problem is the way in which they interact and communicate with one another. Regardless of what they have to say to each other it tends to come out sounding negative or hostile. Additionally, they are extremely quick to get angry with us, the parents, or with each other rather than giving the other individual the benefit of the doubt. We have talked to them about the situation and offered suggestions, but aren't sure how to instill a stronger guideline (aka punishment?!) to solve the problem.
As we have explained to them, they don't treat their friends and teachers this way so we don't expect them to be this way at home. We feel that they need to learn that you cannot treat people this way in the real world and it has been quite unpleasant to be around as well.
One of the things that I really ''got'' from it is how ineffective PUNISHMENT is, especialy for teaching people to treat eachother better. The NVC approach is that punishment (and it's opposite, reward) are forms of coercion, and coercion is not really a nice way to treat people, so it's not a very good example for how to treat others well. Not to mention that, if people do things because they are coerced, then their behavior isn't genuine, so again, not very effective for teaching people how to treat others well.
The NVC workshop is also very helpful for learning how to communicate better with one's children, spouse, co-workers, whomEVER. I know we can all use improved communication, and I have found NVC to be life transforming. However, we do attend the ''practice groups'' because a few workshops, of course, are not going to be a ''silver bullet'' that solves all of our communication problems. More to the point, we don't change old habits (including old communication habits) over night. The practice groups are moderated and very helpful for maintaining what you learn in the workshop.
Best of all, the workshops are sliding scale, and no one is turned away for lack of funds, so you don't have to take the cost into consideration, if that is a concern for you.
Check out the web site for the local office: www.baynvc.org.
BTW: this is not an organization that you ''join,'' so if that is a concern, let me
lay it to rest.
Learning to communicate compassionately
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