21 answers

How Do You Stop the Fighting?

Can anyone out there give me any advice on how to get brothers to stop fighting? I feel like all my boys (9 and 5) do is fight and it is breaking me down! It is so bad that I don't want to be around them. I find myself going in my room by myself to get away from them. I want to enjoy my kids...but right now I am at the end of my rope...I just can't take much more. We have tried sitting them on chairs...taking privileges away...etc. Nothing seems to stop the constant fighting. I know we should ignore some of it...because brothers will be brothers...but this is to the extreme! I have even considered seeking professional help, but I don't know if that is the answer. PLEASE...I need help!!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks so much to all you wonderful moms for your wonderful advice! We have started a new "chore" policy with the boys. If they start fighting and it gets ugly and they don't resolve it quickly...they get one warning to resolve their issue and find something to do or we will find something for them to do. When we have to find them something to do...it isn't fun!!! They have had to clean their bathroom, sweep the floors, fold and put away the laundry, etc. This has seemed to work so far. Our oldest especially...he hates to clean...so he is quick to resolve his issues and sometimes he is nicer than normal so that they don't start a fight!! Hope this continues to work. Thanks again for everyone helping me in this matter...you all are great!!!!!!

Featured Answers

I have only just entered the two kids zone, but I have been told by my sister in law that when she fought with her other sister they were sent to write a list of 10-15 thing they liked about their sibling. Then the next time they were fighting they were each sent to rooms to read the list. She said it worked for them!

1 mom found this helpful

Try to get them involved in sports. Hard working sports. My sons 16 and 17 aren't fighting when they are playing sports. You have to wear them down. Drain it out of them.

Hang out with other families some. Don't just stay home get them around other kids. I noticed my kids will bond around other kids usually. It's like they're a team.

L. B

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

I have done two things with my kids.

1. Sit them cross-legged on the floor facing each other. Have them sit with their noses touching each other's nose. They will start off so angry, and then even angrier at you, but within seconds, they are giggling at how silly the whole thing is, and before you know it, you are all having a good laugh and the air has been cleared.

2. When they fight, forbid them from playing with each other ! Don't even allow them to talk to each other. Make a big point of telling them that since you can't play nice, you are NOT allowed to play with each other at all. You can't even be in the same room together or talk together.
The kids will start to protest very loudly ! Don't give in until you start hearing the "I'm sorry", and "pleases" that will start coming out of their mouths. At this time you can get them to talk and reason out what more appropriate play will be.

In either case, you break the tension in the atmosphere, and get an opportunity for them to settle down and talk about the problem at hand, then work out a reasonable solution.
They are never going to be cured of fighting with each other. Most of us even carry our petty fights into adulthood. But we can learn how to deal with them when the issues come up, and even learn to laugh at ourselves.

2 moms found this helpful

Try to get them involved in sports. Hard working sports. My sons 16 and 17 aren't fighting when they are playing sports. You have to wear them down. Drain it out of them.

Hang out with other families some. Don't just stay home get them around other kids. I noticed my kids will bond around other kids usually. It's like they're a team.

L. B

1 mom found this helpful

hi shelly,
i am a single mom and have been raising 3 sons for the last 17 years. they are now 17,19 and 21. i would reccommend the counseling. it would be more for you than them. one thing that has helped is to talk and establish rules, when they are not fighting, that they have input into. ie if we fight we both will have to go to our room or designated place in the house for 30 mins./ 1 hour. i would have mine hug each other, say they were sorry and why. then they would have to say how they would handle the situation better the next time. other consequences would be some of the things you said, no games, tv, phone, playdates. what also helped is to have them write the consequences and put them in a jar or box. they would have to pull one out and serve that consequence.

the other thing i had to learn is to catch them being good. this can be a challenge. as much as possible, praise them for anything that they do right. ie, put a glass in the sink after using. turn off a light. help each other out. in other words, intervene in the positive and stay quiet in the negative. they would have already decided the consequences. they will pick it from the box/jar.
catch them being good and they will try even more.

the other thing i would have my sons do is take them outside and have them run up and down the sidewalk in front of the house. it would start with 3 times, if they got mouthy i would say, oh you want to do more, then you can now do 10. i would get some peace and they would have an oppurtunity to work off some energy.

remember to be good to yourself. the word says to :"love thy neighbor AS theyself". love you and you can love them more. choose your battles. some fighting is healthy. i found that if i stayed out of it, they usually worked it out. if not, back to pulling the consequence or running.

be blessed.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi S., as a counselor who works with children and families, what you have described is very common. I often give this article to parents. It has some great suggestions:

http://kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/feelings/sibling_ri...

1 mom found this helpful

I really like the book Siblings Without Rivalry. I really recommend it. It isn't about taking away privileges or punishing in any way, but about how to get them to get along. They also have a book (you may have heard of) called How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk. It's great too! They're very fit YOUR family type books about how to talk, not one specific way to deal with kids.

K.

1 mom found this helpful

I have only just entered the two kids zone, but I have been told by my sister in law that when she fought with her other sister they were sent to write a list of 10-15 thing they liked about their sibling. Then the next time they were fighting they were each sent to rooms to read the list. She said it worked for them!

1 mom found this helpful

Wow, you must be having a hard time. This is a difficult situation. I'm sure you are going to get a lot of great suggestions. You may want to try this... let the boys fight. They have to figure out how to get along in their own way. Every time you interfere, you are giving them attention, siding with one or the other, solving their problems.

But here is the catch, they can't disrupt the family. If they get loud, disrupt a meal, outing, etc, that's where the discipline comes in and HARD. They get punished equally because their crime is disrupting the house.

It may take a while, but not all lessons are easily learned. Also, they will also be some fighting, but your goal is to have them learn how to figure these conflicts out by themselves.

Also, when my kids were fighting over a toy or something, it became mine, no arguing, no negotiations.

GOOD LUCK

1 mom found this helpful

I think it depends on thier personalities, when by boys were fighting a lot I got mad and told them to go outside and hurt each other. They both looked at me like I was crazy( I was at the end of my rope also)It upset them and they said they did not want to hurt each other. I told them that they were hurting me with all this fighting and arguing, and I could not take it any more. This made them think. Most of the fighting stemmed from the oldest wanting to be in charge because he was the oldest and the younger wanting to be in charge because he should be able to do everything the other can better. The younger is more competitive.. I also had to start limiting the time they spent together.

1 mom found this helpful

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