being hyper posessive over material stuff - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 35 Old 07-17-2010, 03:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by lolar2 View Post
OK, see, my first instinct is that "taking someone else's stuff without asking" is stealing and an adult would go to jail or pay a heavy fine for it, while being mean and cutting is mean but an adult would only get socially punished for it, not get arrested. Therefore taking someone else's stuff is worse than yelling at the thief. Wouldn't you yell at someone who snatched your purse?.
I do not think playing with shoes/toys/air mattress that may or may not belong to your sister is the same as purse snatching. There is no intent to hurt the item or not return it. Moreover, this is a family unit - this is a certain amount of sharing of stuff that goes on within households.

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She may be interpreting your reaction as you liking her younger sister more and being unfair to her, which is probably going to make her more resistant to being kind or reasonable. When kids see something as unfair (even if we see it as petty fighting over stupid stuff) they tend to dig in their heels and become more unreasonable. Right now it sounds like you like you are working against her, and a little bit like you can't stand her. If you can find a way to try to empathize (or fake empathy) with her you may be able to work with her on a solution that will work.
I think you hit the nail on the head with much of the above

For many years she has been mean to her sister. I am not sure how it started (and I think it was/is multi-causal) but I cannot abide someone being mean to my children...even one sister to another. Partly due to their age difference I have always jumped in - the younger sister has needed protecting from the older sisters wrath. It is just that simple. I do not doubt it looks like I am always taking the younger ones' side.

To lay it all on the line: I am angry with her because she is always so angry with her sister (fun dynamic, eh?). She is angry with me for what she sees as always taking her sisters side.

I am not sure how to end this cycle (and I fully acknowledge that I as the adult have to end it). How do you get over being angry at someone so this charming (sarcasm) cycle can end????? I just do not know.

For what it is worth, I absolutely can stand my middle child...most of the time. She has many great qualities, is a good person, and I love her. We just struggle in this area. It is a big area - but it is not the only areas of life, yk?
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#32 of 35 Old 07-17-2010, 03:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

For many years she has been mean to her sister. I am not sure how it started (and I think it was/is multi-causal) but I cannot abide someone being mean to my children...even one sister to another. Partly due to their age difference I have always jumped in - the younger sister has needed protecting from the older sisters wrath. It is just that simple. I do not doubt it looks like I am always taking the younger ones' side.

To lay it all on the line: I am angry with her because she is always so angry with her sister (fun dynamic, eh?). She is angry with me for what she sees as always taking her sisters side.

I am not sure how to end this cycle (and I fully acknowledge that I as the adult have to end it). How do you get over being angry at someone so this charming (sarcasm) cycle can end????? I just do not know.
The bolded really stood out to me. I think your intentions are great, but they're not doing either child any favors. What happens when you're not available to intervene?

They need to BOTH have the tools to argue on their own and come to solutions. At 7, your younger dd is old enough to be taught simple phrases, techniques, and actions she can take to a) stand her ground, b) keep her dignity and respect herself, and c) come to a solution. She doesn't need your protection, she needs your guidance and backbone.

At 11, your older dd needs to be learning the lessons of mercy while maintaining her rights and dignity. She can't be aware of others' feelings if told that her own are wrong. She needs your guidance, too.


I believe in the idea that when we feel loved we can pass that love on. As an outsider looking in, it seems that she's in need of a more one-on-one relationship with you to strengthen that bond so that when it comes down to you having to play judge (and not in her favor) she's able to see your love more clearly.
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#33 of 35 Old 07-17-2010, 05:00 PM
 
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I just wanted to offer another possible reason your middle DD reacts so strongly to her younger sister using her things (or things she thinks are hers whether they are or not). I am the older sister in my family and although we get along great now when I was about 10-12 I refused to play with her or share anything that belonged to me or even what I was using at the time. My mom also saw it as me being mean to my younger sister (and in retrospect it definitely was) but at the time I didn't want her touching anything I was using or owned because no matter who played with it I was the only one that cleaned up. My mom would tell us both to clean but my younger sister would ignore it and I would be stuck doing all the work or risk being yelled at because I was the older responsible one who had to make sure things were cleaned up.

Now this may not be the case for your daughters but I thought I would mention it because my mom always says now that she wishes she had seen this at the time so that she could have fixed it. She didn't know this was the reason I stopped playing with my younger sister until I was 15 or 16 and it really would have been an easy fix if the problem could have been defined at the time.

I guess in summary it was basically that if something was seen as my mess when it was time to clean up (even if it just one item it gets old to constantly put it away after someone else uses it) then it didn't seem fair to me that my sister had also used it but had none of the responsibility to help put things away.
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#34 of 35 Old 07-18-2010, 09:37 AM
 
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My kids are 8 and 11.Sometimes the 8yo will tell the 11 to not touch his stuff,and not in a nice way.11 says sorry.I tell 8yo not to talk to mean....and we move on. I also remind the kiddos if they have something they do not want anyone to touch to please put it back in their rooms.Lol,I have heard it from ds when I knocked over his star wars legos while cleaning,but I tell him he should be cleaning if he doesn't want me in the room!

I don't like a tense home with bickering either.Less stuff should equal less fighting.We will see if that is true.

All our halloween costumes become community property and go into one big tote box.
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#35 of 35 Old 07-30-2010, 02:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just a quick update.....

It is early days yet, but there has been some positive progress.

I talked to the older DD about keeping special stuff in her room, and to younger DD about asking. It has sunk in a little bit. Earlier today I saw young DD wearing older DD shoes, and I said "You need to ask before you borrow them". It turns out she had asked, and older had said yes!

I think the biggest change came about not because either DD saw the light, but because I have made a concerted effort to stay out of things.

The old pattern was DD would do something I did not like/did not understand, I would intervene, and she and I would get into it.

Now, I let a lot of stuff go and let younger DD fight her own battles. They resolve things much faster when I do not get involved, and moreover, it does not look like I am taking sides. It is occasionally hard for me to bite my tongue, but looking at the big picture, it is exactly what I need to do.
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