Lately my kids (yes, all of them...even the 2-year-old) have spent a lot of time fighting just for the sport of it. I know a certain amount of disagreement and disharmony is normal with siblings but this has been reaching the point of being nearly unbearable. I hear "he/she hit me" "he/she looked at me" "he/she touched me/kicked me/stepped on me/pinched me/whateverelseakidcandotoanotherkid." I told my big kids a few times to just get it over with and hit one another until they bled. They refused of course and probably not the best thing to say to your kids but sometimes I think they need to be shocked into realizing what they are doing. "Go ahead and stand up and hit one another! Don't stop until you're both bleeding! Come on! Do it! You don't like one another anyway!"
"We like each other Mommy!" Doesn't seem like it to me.
I read something last week that sparked an idea. One woman made a "Brothers" bank. For us, it will be a "Family" bank or something like that. The idea is that whenever we catch the kids doing something nice for one another we put some money in a jar. The jar is banked for a long time and when the kids turn in their money they decide on something TOGETHER that we will do with the money.
My kids decided we needed a HUGE jar. It's a gigantic plastic jar that held 2 1/2 lbs of pretzels. I told the kids it would take a very long time to fill that jar if they didn't work extra hard to be helpful and nice to one another but they weren't swayed. I also told them that the jar, when filled, could potentially hold $1000 and could get us a nice vacation, membership at the Y, or any number of fun and exciting rewards.
My son immediately was willing to help his big sister. Whenever she asked him for help, he did it. My oldest, Miss M, will be more of a challenge. I hope she will come around. It will be fun to pay a few coins (I didn't set any amount...just coins...any coins) for my kids to be helpful to one another.
Fingers crossed that it works.