Aha! Parenting Blog

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Roots of Action: Should You Intervene in Sibling Fights?

"Dr. Laura....Thank you for letting me preview your new book Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings. It really opened my eyes to why my children were not getting along, and gave me the skills to step in when they start to fight. I am happy to report that their fighting has gone from several times a day to once a week, and when they do fight, I now know how to help them work things out so there are smiles and hugs at the end. This is a miracle." - Elizabeth

Theodore Dreikurs, one of the fathers of positive parenting, theorized 50 years ago that sibling rivalry was an attempt by children to get their parents’ attention. The worst thing parents can do, he argued, is to get involved. A flurry of studies followed that confirmed that when parents stay out of children’s fights, children indeed fight less.


But over the years, subsequent research has raised more questions. Yes, siblings fight less without parental intervention. But, it’s now clear, that’s because if parents don't get involved, the majority of disputes end with the less powerful sibling bowing quickly to the will of the more powerful sibling. So they may be fighting less, but that's because the less powerful child is not standing up for herself.

In other words, when we don't intervene, we may be tacitly encouraging bullying! But when we DO intervene, we may be encouraging more sibling fights! What's a parent to do?

Luckily, there is a way to intervene that both diminishes fighting and helps children learn how to work things out so that both of them get their needs met. That's the topic of my guest post today at Roots of Action.com. Roots of Action is a wonderful parent and teacher education website founded by Dr. Marilyn Price-Mitchell, and I'm visiting them today as part of my virtual book tour. Please hop over to finish this post: Roots of Action.com

And if you only have one child, please bear with me as I finish this virtual book tour and launch my book. We'll stop focusing on siblings, and get back to more general parenting issues, in two weeks. In the meantime, please note that many of the conversations I'm taping and making available to you as part of my virtual book tour--such as the ones coming up next week with Tina Payne Bryson and Hands Free Mama-- address issues that all parents face, not just parents of siblings.  

Get Peaceful Parents, Happy Siblings from Amazon (including Kindle & Audio!)
Get Peaceful Parents, Happy Siblings from Barnes and Noble (Including for Nook & Audio)
Get Peaceful Parents, Happy Siblings from an Independent Bookseller near you
Get Peaceful Parents, Happy Siblings directly from Dr. Laura (autographed copy inscribed to you or your designee-makes a great gift!)

Get Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings from Book Depository (free shipping worldwide)

Get Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings in Canada

Get Calm Parent, Happy Siblings outside the US from Amazon.Co.UK (including ebook) - This is the exact same book, with a new name for the UK audience. 

Order from Walmart 

Order from Book Court in Brooklyn, for faster delivery in the NY area.

Order from Powells, a great indie bookstore.

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