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12 January
Posted by:
Michael Grose

Siblings! Can't live with them and can't live without them.

Researcher Laurie Kramer from the University of Illinois found that kids who learned how to argue with their siblings had more advanced emotional development.

Amazingly, over half of all families rate sibling fighting as a significant impediment to enjoying family life.

Who would have thought that sibling rivalry is stronger in children of the same gender and who are close in age. It also seems to be a bit weird when the eldest is a boy closely followed by a girl.

And sibling rivalry is experienced less in families who embrace the values of shared responsibility and cooperative participation.

Tellingly, there is less fighting in families who have a known process such as family meetings to resolve conflict.

So what's your process? How do you help kids sort out conflict, handle jealousy and learn to live together?

My Raising Happy Kids seminars will focus on this. We'll fill halls with that topic.

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  • rivalry
  • sibling
  • siblings
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