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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My two girls (7 and 4) are at each other a lot these days.<br><br>
I mean, my 4yo will beat, claw, or scratch her sister to the point where my 7yo has some scars where she was scratched on her arms and shoulders. My 7yo usually taunts the 4yo until she gets to the angry state where she starts attacking. My 7yo is very competitive. Today we were leaving the house and 7yo said she would beat 4yo to the car. We were going to the hospital to visit a mom and new baby. I was going to stop by Starbucks for a gift mug for the new mom. They both tried to get through the door at the same time, and 7yo pushed 4yo between the door and wall on purpose. The metal bottom edge of the door scraped a good amount of skin from 4yo's toe and it was bleeding a lot.<br><br>
So, then 7yo feet horrible about it and gave 4yo several of her toys and apologized. All was great in the car until we got to Starbucks. They both had to use the bathroom while I paid. I heard some fighting and crying from the bathroom and 7yo emerged with another deep scratch on her shoulder from 4yo!! Apparently 4yo wanted to get her own TP and 7yo beat her to it and got some for her.<br><br>
I have been wondering what to do about this all day. While I cool down they are each confined to their rooms since they can't seem to handle being in the same room without hurting each other. 4yo has her music turned up as loud as it will go because she's angry. I have been talking with them about not hurting each other for weeks, and they have come up with alternative actions in case they feel angry but they don't do them even when I remind them as something is escalating. They each have their own rooms and I told them they can retreat to their rooms as needed to get away from each other. They would rather fight.<br><br>
I was thinking we could do some cooperative/team building activities together. I just can't think of any right now other than puzzles and a cooperative art project. I also need some kind of consequence for physically hurting your sibling. Ideas?<br><br>
Oh, and starting tomorrow I am back to babysitting a 7yo who is dd's classmate all day while her mom works. She also is a strong personality. help!
 

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Some cooperative/teambuilding things my kids (8, 6, 4) like: story building (give them a sentence that begins a story, and they take turns finishing it-each building on what the other says); have them act out a story incorporating a few elements I give them (so-make a play that includes a lemon, a dog, and a sheet...); playing board games team-style (this works for us b/c with them + me we have 4 = 2 per team; the kids have to work together); building forts together; working together to cook with each person contributing part. Brainstorming together to solve any sort of problem is always good, the sillier the better--all ideas welcome and respected.<br><br>
We still do you hit, you sit. You hit, you sit to calm down--until you are calm enough to be safe. And then we encourage them to make amends. But we also try to prevent the hitting, so we do a lot of work helping them recognize when it's time to take a break from each other--recognizing emotions like frustration and anger, learning to manage those emotions, learning that taking a break can prevent us from doing or saying hurtful things, learning to listen to our bodies and feelings so we know when it's time to take a break and calm down, etc. And we will enforce separation when things get heated, to prevent aggression from happening.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Great ideas! Thanks <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
We are going swimming in the AM, and then in the PM I think I will ask them to plan a play using the random objects. I will encourage creating a set and costumes-- whatever I can do to stretch it out more. lol!
 
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