How many times have you had to play referee between your kids? If you can’t stand to stay out of your children’s fights and decide to become involved, the most effective way is to put your children in the same boat. This method makes sure there is no accidental favoritism that can erode the sibling relationship. It honors the fact that in any conflict, both parties can influence the outcome.
Since fighting requires both children to keep the situation hostile and unresolved, both should experience the same discipline for their disruptive antics, regardless of who started it, who had it first, or who owns it. None of those matters! If fighting erupts and doesn’t resolve itself, and you feel you must step in, try these several approaches that can help resolve conflicts:
️☑️ Instead of intervening in every argument, talk your children through how they can stand up for themselves and try to resolve the issue before reporting to you.
☑️ Insist that everyone take a break to calm down when arguments get heated.
️☑️ Set hard rules against name calling, profanity, and bringing up the past.
☑️Instead of using individual names, say: “You two.”
️☑️ Minimize comparisons. Whether comparisons are positive or negative, they have the same unintended effect on your children.
☑️Give a choice: “Would you two like to go to the Peace Table, use the Wheel of Choice, or take some Positive Time Out?”
☑️Show faith: “Let me know when you two have brainstormed ideas and have a solution you both feel good about trying.”
Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.
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