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One of the greatest desires parents have is to prepare their children to transition succesfully into adult life. In this book Bill & Pam share tips and techniques from nearly 18 years of parenting that will build your children’s confidence as you help them discover the unique gifts God has put inside them.
Jonalyn Fincher wants to show that women can be both fully human and fully feminine. Traditionally, femininity has been a role women play, a role defined by culture and simplistic sermons. The author encourages women to look at the feminine roles or boxes that pinch their souls: mother, fashion devotee, working wife, intellectual.
And Then I Had Kids will help you handle common struggles such as priorities, discipline, and fatigue. As Susan shares biblical insights and her own humorous stories, you’ll be comforted by understanding, refreshed with laughter, and stimulated with ideas to enable this season of life to be one of unique and lasting joy.
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How to Handle Sibling Squabbles
His sister cried out brokenhearted and angry.
Anger boiled in my heart and my eyes flashed. Why can’t they just get along? I asked myself.
Anger sharpened my words as I told my children to come to me. I prayed silently for grace and words as they walked to me. How do I teach my children to get along and use self-control when I lose my temper? How do I encourage family unity when personalities scrape and bump each other?
It is difficult to know how to handle sibling squabbles without entering their labile emotional states. At some point while handling a frustrating situation God reminded me that my kids are young. They do not have coping mechanisms to deal with anger, fatigue, and frustration. He reminded me to teach my kids how to handle arguments with grace. If I speak harshly when things get difficult, my children will too. So first I must slow down, pray for wisdom, and speak in love so I can model appropriate ways to handle irritations. Then I need to teach them skills to help them respond and not react to difficult situations.
Here is what I do when arguments between siblings arise:
- Often I put both parties in a short time-out to help each child calm down. This helps us discuss things rationally.
- I find out what happened. I allow each child to have a chance to share his or her side of the story without interruptions.
- I ask my children, “Would you like to be treated the way you are treating your sister/brother?” This fosters discussion and helps the child see the argument from a different viewpoint.
- I ask each child what he did wrong and what he should do next time the situation comes up. I help give each child ideas about how to better handle the situation in the future.
- I have each child ask each other for forgiveness naming what they need forgiveness. Then I have have them ask God for forgiveness
- If a consequence other than time-out needs to be implemented I give the consequence.
- I remind them of our family vision. (Ours is “Honor God, honor others, and have fun doing it.”)
While my children are getting along my husband and I:
- Develop a vision for our family. We ask questions around the dinner table about what our kids want our family to be like. My husband and I dream about how we see our family. We also talk about what God wants our family to be like.
- We tell our children they are best friends and encourage them to remember the things they enjoy about each other.
- We memorize scripture about how we are to treat others.
- We share stories about how we handle difficult situations.
- We laugh and tell stories about our family.
- We pray for our children to have healthy lifelong relationships with each other.
Encouraging sibling relationships is gloriously challenging and amazingly frustrating. Then there are those wonderful moments when they treat each other well and those moments make all the other ones worth it.
What struggles do you face with siblings in your home? How do you handle sibling squabbles? What’s one of the goofiest things your kids have fussed about?
By: Angela Mackey