If you want to encourage a good sibling bond, it is important to remember that your children are individuals and may develop connections in different ways.
What works for one child may not work for another and what works in one family may not work in another. It is also crucial that the siblings respect one another and learn positive communication skills early on because that will foster healthy development.
Look at the bright side of things together. One of the simplest ways to encourage a positive relationship with your children is to look for things they have in common. Instead of magnifying the difference, look deeply into their similarities and bond over that.
This helps build trust between your children and makes them feel that you care about all their experiences and emotions.
Let your kids interact with other siblings, because it is a great motivator for them to get along. You can ask another sibling how he or she was able to encourage good relationships between their own brothers and sisters. Their advice might give you some fresh insight on what has worked for them.
You can also ask the other parent how they were able to get their children to cooperate with each other. They may even give you an idea of another way to encourage good sibling dynamics that you never would have thought of yourself.
Don’t try to change your child’s behavior all by yourself. Instead, teach your children how to work together through positive reinforcement. When they do something nice for each other, praise them both equally.
Let your children know that it does not matter whose idea the act of kindness was; what matters is that everyone gets an equal amount of credit and appreciation. Encourage your kids to solve problems between themselves by giving them responsibilities that will help them develop skills in self-reliance and independence.
For example, ask your children what they think is a fair way to resolve an argument over who gets the next turn using the Wii. Then you can discuss with them how this process could work when they are fighting over toys or chores at home.
Make sure that your kids understand that sibling relationships change over time. For instance, they may not get along when they are young but later on in life, they might become close friends or even fall in love.
It is also important for your children to know that you will be there to support them no matter what happens between them. Just make sure that you don’t act like a referee, but rather a mediator in their disagreements.
Give your children some private time alone with you. Having one-on-one playtime with you is a great way for siblings to get to know each other better and feel more connected to each other in a friendly manner.
When your child feels comfortable enough around the other sibling, she or he might even confide in you about certain things related to their sibling relationship. For example, your child may tell you that her brother keeps on taking her toys without asking for permission or maybe your son is feeling left out because his sister is spending time with friends instead of him.
Give your children space to build confidence when they are around each other. Go out by yourself and leave your children together to play with one another unsupervised.
This way, they will learn to trust their own decisions and be able to work through problems on their own as well as develop a sense of responsibility for their actions towards each other.