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Consequences needed!

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From day one, I have stressed to my kids how rude it is to purposely ignore someone. At this point, a simple reminder is usually enough to get them listening again.


One of my favorite consequences to pull out when one sibling is mean to the other (whatever form that takes): to make up for hurting your sibling, you now have to do something nice for them. This could be making their bed, letting them pick the movie or computer game, playing a game of their choice graciously, etc. The specifics can be tailored to the time of day or to what your children like to do.



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In general, for poor treatment of a sibling, we typically have the offender serve the offended by assuming one of their chores for them. With ignoring, after I'd explained it once, I would also give thought to telling them that if they ignore a family member, they can expect to be ignored by a family member (me) at what I think is an opportune time, such as "May I have dessert?" or "Can we go to the pool?" I would tell them ahead of time so that it doesn't feel like games-playing, but it does give them a natural taste of the experience they've given to someone else. Another possibility is to immediately give tons of attention to the ignored one. I broke our dc of calling a sib a name this way. Every time sib 1 would name call, sib 2 got tons of mommy attention and the other didn't. That cured it quick.

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was famous for this.


I would ask her if she forgot how to be polite.


"Nooo..." (she knew something was coming)


"I think you did since you are ignoring your sibling, so I'm going to help you with that"


"No really, mom, I know how to be polite"


"Too late, you had your chance, now this is what you get to say...."


and I would say something like:


"Dearest sister, apple of my eye, is there any way I may be of service to you?" in my finest British accent.


I would continue this for several minutes until all the kids were laughing and making up their own accents and having fun.


I was concerned if I gave stricter consequences I would further the divide between them rather than remind them they really can have fun together and don't need to be rude.


Intermittently, of course, I give the 'mom' lectures warning them I will limit time spent with people outside our family if they can't treat each other well, and more importantly, God intended their relationships with each other to be a gift.


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I always tried to choose a positive consequence. I wouldn't ignore a child to try to teach them not to ignore, that just seems wrong....but that's just my opinion.


I would do as others said and act silly and get everyone laughing. Then I'd say something like, "Hey, we're all laughing together, we must really like each other! And why not, I ask....because WE ARE THE last name'S! What's NOT to like?!" Or, we'd sit in a circle and all say at least one nice thing/something we like about each person.


Usually that cured the problem.....

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