Here are the major highlights of the week that inspired me to create the above meme:
Our current state of sibling disharmony would indicate that my kids are going to grow up to be those siblings that know each other exist, but live completely separate lives and barely speak to each other. They will tell their own children stories about the mistreatment they endured at the hands of their siblings. You know, the walk to school uphill both ways kinds of stories. However, I know it is normal for siblings to fight; so normal in fact that there are nearly 10 million Google results about how to stop it! I browsed through a number of the results to discover that, for the most part, I am doing things correctly according to the experts and fellow mommy blogger opinions. So why are my children nearly murdering each other on a daily basis?
Because, here’s the thing, most of the experts contradict their advice within their articles. Most of them have a long list of suggestions about what to do, such as taking away toys, separating them, making them say nice things, hugging, even stuffing them into one oversized shirt together. And then these experts have the audacity to include the completely incongruous advice to just, “Ignore it,” or “Let them work it out.” Here is where the difficulty begins. There is no exact science behind choosing which tactic to employ each of the 276 times a day my kids begin to argue. Sometimes I accidentally get in the middle of stupid stuff that I later regret, such as who has a cuter stuffed dog, and then sometimes I ignore screaming until someone draws blood, and I know I have waited too long to intervene.
So what is a mom to do?
Here is my advice to attain so-so sibling relationships since truly getting along is out of the question:
Step 1. Keep on randomly nagging and disciplining when you have the energy.
Step 2. Frequently remind them of the ideals you intend for them to have concerning sibling relationships. I like to do this one on one or it will start another fight.
Step 3. Pray and keep the faith that it will all sink into their thick skulls somewhere between the ages of 17 and 25. (Edited one year later: 18 and 25. It is definitely NOT 17!)
I am the mother of seven children ranging from teens to a toddler, living out in the middle of nowhere, USA. I aim to hone the craft of giving advice without pretending to have this whole mom thing figured out. I am Christian, but not the really nice kind that is good at it. I am also conservative, but I promise not to be in your face with political agendas very often. I like to infuse humor into my writing, so don't freak out if you are offended or appalled by what you read here. There is a very fine line between serious advice and sarcastic hyperbole.