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Help Kids Get Along - A Fun (and Simple!) Approach to Sibling Rivalry.

Help your kids get along, insha’Allah, by facilitating this one thing.


They are often playmates.

Someone to share life with, share a bedroom with perhaps.

Share parents with.

But even with the fun, there is another thing that happens with siblings.

They can squabble. Like, a whole lot.

Sibling rivalry is a thinnnggg.

And if you’re anything like me, you do find yourself wanting to shut the arguments down at times.

Speak truth now…even if you can facilitate everyone being heard...

...and it all being resolved in relative peace at times... still, at least sometimes, wish it would stop already when they squabble, right? Say yes and make me feel better!

Okay, so I have something for you that Dr. Daniel Siegel, parenting author and teacher, says recent studies have found about sibling relationships.

And it’s not something hard to do… doesn’t need you breathing more (though breathing always helps!)

...nor does it ask that you get up an hour before they rise!

It doesn’t even ask that you try to lessen conflict.

This thing, according to studies, helps them develop close, long-term relationships with one another as adults…

It is, according to the studies, the best predictor for strong sibling relationships later on in life.

Okay, come closer so I can tell you what it is. Ready? Okay, here it is:


That’s it!

Dr Daniel Siegel acknowledges that children argue; they just do. And he also acknowledges that you’re never gonna get the conflict down to zero (hang up that dream!)

But the thing is you don’t even need to. All you need to do is ensure there’s more fun than conflict.

That’s it.

Balancing it out and all that.

In fact, Dr. Siegel in the book, The Whole Brain Child, says to think of it as maths equation…

...that if you can increase the fun times alongside and more than the conflict... providing activities and opportunities that build positive memories and emotions...’ll help them increase their chances of maintaining and enjoying a strong sibling bond, well into adulthood (insha'Allah).

So, how can we crank up the sibling fun factor?

(You know I like simplicity).


🔹Are there any activities that your kids just enjoy doing together and are easy for you to set up?

🔹Are they awesome at building lego together? If so, whip out that lego (don’t whip out if lego mostly causes beef - we’re going for fun and lifelong bonds vibes insha'Allah remember?!)

🔹Do they love doing puzzles together?

🔹Do they enjoy swinging on the big swings at the playground together? (My two do at the moment!)

Consider starting with something easy that gets the feel-goods going between them.

Easy = win for you + feel-goods = win for them.

(now that's a maths equation I can get behind)

Some other fun ideas:

▪️Is there a board game you all love to play?

▪️Do they wanna play tag with you or hide and seek? (The playing tag may or may not reveal your fitness levels...Just preparin' you!)

▪️ Is there a place, like the park, that you all enjoy together?

▪️Could you all cuddle on the sofa and watch a show that you enjoy together?

▪️Could you look at old photos and videos together, and would that be enjoyable?

▪️What about making a fort and letting them enjoy playing in it together?


....crank up the fun times while they’re young….

....and when they argue, remember that it’s okay...

…as long as there is enough (and more!) fun to balance it out.

❓I would love to hear in the comments: what do your kids enjoy doing together?

Happy fun times!

May Allah grant our kids strong, supportive - and eemaan and taqwa-filled - sibling bonds. Ameen 🤲🏽

And remember as you parent (and referee sibling squabbles!), that it's not practice makes perfect, it's practice makes progress. You've got this, insha'Allah :)

Photo Credit: Yaroslav Shuraev

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