How to Deal With Siblings Conflict

This article is part of a video series with Sharon Rajan, a teacher at Montessori School, Bali. Sharon has over 3o years of experience teaching children 3-6 years in Montessori schools in the US and Canada.

Dr. Linnea: And this is also a great strategy to deal with the siblings’ conflict?

Sharon: Yes.

Dr. Linnea: To actually show them and try to practice ways, you know, for when…

Sharon: Especially when you have, you know, three, four children. It’s important to do that because otherwise, you’re constantly being asked to be the intermediary, right? And you don’t need to do it. It’s not necessary. This is part of their growing up.

Dr. Linnea: It’s a great, great point, I think, not having to be the intermediator because that’s what we do.

Sharon: That’s what you do.

Dr. Linnea: All the time.

Sharon: And when it’s your own children, when you do that, one person is always going to feel, “Well, you chose that one over me.” All right? You don’t need to do that. That’s where those sibling things start to come in, right? But if you’re saying, “This is how you can deal with it. Okay, next time it happens, don’t come to me.” And after you’ve solved it, even, like even in here, I say to them, “But you’ve already solved it, right? You said this to him and he said this to you and you’ve said sorry, and everything’s fine.” And they go, “Yeah.” And I say, “Then you don’t need to come and tell me about it.” Because they’re still trying to engage me by bringing me into it and I’m saying, “I don’t need to be involved in it because you’ve sorted it out.” Right? And eventually, it goes away because a lot…especially at home, a lot of it is trying to get your attention, right? And if you’re saying, “I don’t need to be involved in it,” some of it’s gonna go away.

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Written by Dr. Linnea Passaler

A surgeon and mom of a three, all currently under the age of five, Dr. Linnea is MamaDoctor's founder. She believes healthy virtual spaces where people can share their honest concerns and get help from knowledgeable, trustworthy sources, change lives for the better. She is an advocate for maternal mental health and wellbeing.