Creating sibling harmony

Pamela Varady, PsyD Psychologist and Family Coach, shares advice for parents on how to help create harmony and decrease fighting between siblings
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Creating sibling harmony

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One of the ways to help siblings to get along better is to teach them how to have a positive impact on each other. Kids, like adults, want impact. Whether we're two or 102, we want to move people, we want to influence them. And sometimes, one child doesn't know how to influence their brother or sister so they'll do it in an obnoxious way--poking, teasing, humming, la la la, to drive the other sibling crazy. What we need to do is understand that the sibling has the right idea to have impact, but you need to have positive impact, not negative. So, an example of having positive impact might be when you have a sibling who's, let's say is around five years old and there's a new baby and the five year old is not really taking to the baby and they're kind of poking and prodding and you're getting a little bit worried, one of the things you can do is you can tell a "true story" and tell the five year old that, "The baby was crying all day long. I tried rocking and holding, and feeding, and the baby wouldn't stop crying. And all of a sudden, I don't know how this came to me, but I gave her your nightgown and she smelled it, baby sister just relaxed and she was so happy." The very next day, that five year old will go up to her little baby sister and give her the nightgown to smell and know she's having a positive impact. That will decrease the negative impacts, which is really where the fighting is coming from.

Pamela Varady, PsyD Psychologist and Family Coach, shares advice for parents on how to help create harmony and decrease fighting between siblings

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Pamela Varady, PsyD

Psychologist

Dr. Pamela Varady is a Child and Adult Psychologist and sought-after parenting expert. She has appeared as a relationship expert on NBC, Discovery Health Network, The Today Show and Fox TV.  Dr. Varady wrote a workbook, 15 Minutes To Sibling Harmony and conducts seminars and Purposeful Parenting Classes throughout Southern California. In addition, Dr. Varady operates Dynamic Learning and Listening Center for children with special needs with her husband, Dr. Jackson Varady and sister, Dr. Jennifer Glasser, who are also psychologists. Pamela lives in Santa Monica with her husband and 13 year old twin boys.

 

 

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