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  • Dadtrackworld – Sibling Rivalry
  • Premier Icon Tallpaul
    Full Member

    TP Jnr is 4, just started school and is horrid to his 2yo Sister.

    He hates her playing with his toys and being in his bedroom but will happily play with her toys and go in to her room.

    Whilst the basic emotion and behaviour is understandable. Since he’s started school things have really escalated. He is now physically hitting her, snatching toys from her and throwing them and today he pushed her over in to cold wet puddle.

    I know that he is exhausted and struggling with the challenge of starting school, but his behaviour is unacceptable and getting worse.

    The worst part is that our daughter absolutely adores him, truly worships him, is kind and caring toward him.

    We employ various methods to control this; deliberate time in their own space to play, structured play together, time-outs when things get out of hand. However, I’m now concerned he’s going to hurt her and we cannot stop the flash points (or even predict when they will occur).

    I’m at a complete loss of what to do with him. In all other respects he is an absolute angel, no hint of these behaviours when he was at Nursery, now at School or when he interacts socially with other kids.

    Premier Icon woody2000
    Full Member

    It’s a control thing.  You’ve just hoofed him out in to the big bad world, to an environment that he has no control over and has to be “good” all day.  The bad behaviour is just a result of that.  Praise the good behaviour, ignore the bad (wherever possible) and it will pass.

    IANACP, but I do have 3 boys aged 10,9 and 5 and we have employed this tactic with (mostly) success.

    Premier Icon Tallpaul
    Full Member

    It happened before School, but it’s definitely worse now. I do undestand the stress this change has caused him and that this contributes to more extreme reactions.

    I’m also in favour of rewarding the positives whilst ignoring the negatives. But I can’t ignore him punching her, pushing her in to furniture and hurling quite large toys in her direction. However, I will concede that our reactions to these events have been completely ineffectual (so we may as well do nothing). I’m hoping there is something more effective we can try!

    Premier Icon DezB
    Full Member

    Something tells me you’re not the first parents to experience this phenomenon…

    Premier Icon martinhutch
    Full Member

    It happened before School, but it’s definitely worse now. I do undestand the stress this change has caused him and that this contributes to more extreme reactions.

    It’s not necessarily stress, it could be simple tiredness after a longer day of activities. Make sure he’s getting enough sleep overall, especially if he’s now forgoing daytime sleep.

    As for the errant behaviour, you obviously can’t ignore it, but try to avoid flashpoints – keep her out of his room unless one of you is there to supervise for a bit, perhaps. Be consistent when aggression does happen – let him know what is going to happen in terms of timeouts etc and stick to it.

    It should improve as he settles into school, and his energy levels increase.

    Premier Icon orangewinger
    Free Member

    No pudding?

    Premier Icon muddyjames
    Free Member

    Young kids don’t have a concept of sharing. Every possession is prized to them. Having someone else take what seems like a insignificant toy Is like someone taking the keys of your Porsche and saying I’m just going to Sainsburys for some donuts.

    Interesting article here:

    Premier Icon outofbreath
    Free Member

    I’ve got a lad of three and girl of 7. I fear that your’s is just being a normal boisterous lad. My three year old lashes out with his fists and would push into a puddle I’m sure.

    Lots of stern tellings off, trips to the naughty step & no pudding and after a few years of your patient correction and he’ll learn how to behave.

    Also watch the daughter like a hawk in case she’s winding him up while you’re not looking. 2 year olds are cunning enough to do that.

    All IMHO and I’m not a pro.

    Premier Icon ads678
    Full Member

    The kids 4, it’ll be a phase he’s going through because he wants assert himself, bollock him when he does something wrong, praise him when he does something right.

    No need to over analyse it.

    Premier Icon Sandwich
    Full Member

    That will continue until daughter is big enough to hit back. There will then be a rapprochement.

    Premier Icon shortbread_fanylion
    Full Member

    Wow, that’s young to be starting school. My son went aged 5 and a bit – can’t imagine him going earlier. He’s 6 now and the problem we have is his sister, aged 4! Lots of jealousy towards him, the odd kick, nip and a bite now and again to keep him on his toes!

    Premier Icon Dave Vanderspek
    Free Member

    My two are age 7 & 10 and this still happens pretty much all the time. Sorry don’t have any answers for you but it’s absolutely hellish.

    Premier Icon DT78
    Free Member

    Two boys 4.5 and 2.5 eldest just started school. Similarity behaviour though for us it’s got better since school as I think he needed more stimulation.

    Our 2yr old fights back and is a bloody good shot with a hot wheels car so we have to be doubly careful both ways as he can easily hurt his bigger brother

    We just have to keep an eye on them and bollock as things happen. Tbh fighting over toys / territory is one thing but I occasionally catch the eldest doing something just plain nasty. The other day he decked his little brother with a completely unnecessary shoulder barge which lucky didn’t result in a major injury. He got picked up and shouted out for that. Yes I’m a bad parent for shouting, but quite frankly ignoring bad behaviour doesn’t cut it with our eldest. He will just get worse and keep pushing it unless you come down hard as soon as he crosses the line.

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Full Member

    Surely this is what the cupboard under the stairs is for?
    A week in there (on bread and water obvs) will soon have him changing his tune…😀

    Premier Icon ctk
    Full Member

    Boys will be boys. Make sure older kid is getting lots of your attention and reward good behavior, ignore bad. I have 2 boys 8 & 6 and struggle to follow this advice! They are playing lego together now lovely though 🙂

    Premier Icon twinw4ll
    Free Member

    I used to batter my younger sister relentlessly don’t know why, seems it’s character building because believe me you wouldn’t mess with her now, hard as f***.

    Premier Icon joshvegas
    Free Member

    Come on OP be honest.

    Did you laugh at the puddle incident?

    Premier Icon neilnevill
    Free Member

    4yo and 2yo girls here. They play beautifully together

    Some of the time!

    They fight a bit too. It’s not nice but it’s normal.

    Premier Icon handybar
    Free Member

    You are right to keep an eye on it as it could escalate. My first memory is being pushed off a swing by my older sister and breaking my arm. It’s sibling jealousy nothing to do with school. The problem is by disciplining him you are also giving him attention, he basically wants back to exclusive attention he enjoyed before the sister came along.

    Premier Icon HoratioHufnagel
    Free Member

    We’ve got 2 girls 1yr and 2.5yrs and they are similar.

    We read if they are closer in age they can be nicer to each other

    Well that was a load of nonsense.

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