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I am the parent of a 12 year old and a 4 year old. Quite an age span, I know. The 12 year old is my stepdaughter but I have been raising her since she was 3 1/2, so she really is mine.

Both of my daughters are strong willed, independent, and like to do things their own way. I am the youngest child and have two older brothers. My one brother used to tease and pick on me and we would fight a lot, sometimes physical fighting. Even though we are grown and he has since apologized for the way he treated me, it left a deep scar.

I find that I don't like it when my children fight or argue. I don't like my 12 year old to get mad at the 4 year old or vice versa. In fact today they were doing something and the younger one elbowed the older one. Next thing I know the older one throws her elbow at her little sister and kicks her out of her room....literally. The 4 year old is crying, the 12 year old is mad. I tried to explain to my older daughter that when the little one does something hurtful to her to come and get me when my little one is misbehaving. This of course just makes my older daughter mad. I think it's because she likes to take charge of situations. She likes to tease her sister.

My friend who raised four children said to just let them work it out, but it is very hard when I see them hurting each other with words or physically. I just wonder if anyone has any advice or solutions. I find myself getting very stressed out about their behavior between the two of them.



Re: Siblings

I think your friend is right. Let them work it out. Praise them both for the times when they do get along. You don't want to come in and handle a situation after the fact anyway because you weren't there when it happened so you can't know what went on. Usually the little one is portrayed as the victim and we accept that because they are little - but it's also a secret weapon the little ones carry around with them - they know how to get out of things. Let them work it out. She is not going to seriously hurt the little one. If she did - you have a much bigger problem than normal fighting.

Re: Re: Siblings

Thanks for your reply! My younger one does play the victim sometimes but I usually respond to her crying and complaining about her sisiter with what did you do and she will tell me what she did first to either instigate the situation. I think when children are being hurt whether it is pushed or shoved, that does need to be handled, and usually there is some cry of "MOMMY" and tears. My girls definitely don't fight the way my brother and I did that's for sure!

I tend to be sensitive towards the older one since she is 12 and reaching that age where they like a little space. My younger one can play the victim but she never get very far with that. In fact she is very quick to cry but she is also quick to apologize.

It's typical sibling stuff and I know that but it is still difficult at times. Like I said in my post it really has effected me even as an adult the things my own brother said to me. I listen to country music and tear up everytime I hear Reba McEntire's "My Sister". It's a great song and that's what I really want for my own daughters, someone to be their friend for life. I will continue to work on just letting things be....