Kids Will Not Stop Fighting!!!

Updated on May 19, 2012
M.. asks from Appleton, WI
19 answers

I am at a loss - my kids will not stop fighting!!! Is there a full moon? They are 9 (boy) & 7 (girl)... The 9yr old is constantly pestering & my 7 yr old is then screaming at him to stop. They hit and are soooooo disrespectful!!! No punishment is working... Any helpful tips or at least let me know that I'm not alone?????

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answers from Houston on

Screaming in the house, unacceptable. Hitting, unacceptable. It's not a matter of punishment working, YOU have to take charge. PERIOD. Until then...

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Youngstown on

When I was little and would fight with my siblings my mom would make the two kids fighting hold hands with each other. We had to look at each other and say 3 things we liked about each other. It usually worked at stopping the immediate fighting. Also, it helped us to learn to like each other more.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Washington DC on

sorry, mama, we're actually just a couple of days from a new moon. there's going to be a 'ring of fire' solar eclipse on sunday, though, maybe we can blame it on that?
i'm afraid your only recourse is to leash, muzzle and kennel the little beasties.
;) khairete

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I agree with Melissa 100%. I don't play referee or try to figure out who is right or wrong or who started it. Everybodys in trouble. If they are fighting over something, it's mine. If they are being physical with each other, the punishment is exactly what it would be if they were being physical with a classmate or friend. Swift justice everytime. No empty threats or exasperated pleas to try and get along.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

When my kids fight, I take away whatever they are fighting about and reply with, "I can't believe I just bought you a fight." No blame. No lecture. They know what they are doing wrong. They think twice next time.

Our kids are 9, 6, 4 and 1. They rarely fight. I don't allow it. You may communicate, but not fight. I tell them, "try it again." I keep repeating it after each attempt of their communication trial..until I'm satisfied with the tone and the verbiage. All 4 of our kids share a room for sleeping. We have enough room for them to be separated, but it teaches them life skills.

I ask them if they would like to be talked to like that. I answer is usually no.

I also tell them when you hit or scream at someone, you are telling them it's ok to treat YOU like that. You treat others how you'd want to be treated. I'll tell them, "AP, when you hit your brother, you are telling him that it's ok to hit you. Are you ok with NP hitting you?" She looks at me incredulously, "No." "Well, then don't show him by your actions that it IS in fact, ok. Your brothers are your best friends and they will always be your best friends. Do you treat your friends that way? (No) You better be sure you are treating your family even better than your friends."

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Dover on

My son is going on 13 & my daughter is 11 1/2. Our house has been like yours for a few years now & I agree, it's exhausting & frustrating.

What I've started doing is just sending them both to their rooms every single time they fight. I refuse to live in the middle of a boxing ring & be angry all the time, so this is how I'm choosing to deal with it. I don't care one iota who started it, who hit whom, who said what to the other, whose turn it is to watch a show on tv, etc. etc. etc., if they're fighting, it's BOTH of them & they both get sent to their rooms until I'm ready for them again. If they start again, I send them upstairs again.

It's definitely cut back considerably.

ETA--I read another response & maybe I'm taking it wrong, but it sounded like she actually asked how to get her kids to go to their rooms...? This confuses me, to be honest. You're the mother, right? Which means you're the boss, right? Send their butts to their rooms, period. You don't need a suggestion from a man to get that done I don't think. If they seriously refuse to go, punish, punish, punish. Take away every single thing that's important to them & take it for a good long while so they understand that what you say goes & you really mean it. Take charge for God's sake! Raising your kids is the biggest, most important job you'll ever have & nobody else is going to do it for you.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

And we are nearing or are at the end of the school year! Have fun!

I usually tell them if you can't control yourselves I want no part of it. Get out in the back yard and see if you can find your personalities! Apparently they leave their personalities out back all the time. :p

My kids lose it because they are bored and have too much energy. Nothing like some outdoor play to get that out of them. The added bonus is if they are fighting out back I can't hear it. :)

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Separate them. If they can't keep their hands off of each other then they both need to stay in their rooms until they calm down. If they share a room, then send one of them to your room, with a book!
I think the end of the school year is full of spring and summer fever :(

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

I second Suz, I have a 5, 3, and 1 year old. The 5 and 3 are fighting like Tasmanian devils over a tiny scrap of meat.Its been this way all day. Had to separate them for a while, but the minute they saw each other, it started anew. Now the 3 year old is arguing with a non verbal 1 year old about toys, cartoons, shoes. ARGH

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

when they are fighting tell them since they have time to fight they have time to clean. and give them jobs. in separate areas. both of them. him for pestering her for screaming.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Denver on

When this happens and it is DRIVING ME CRAZY, they have to hug and apologize, which starts as NO then turns in to laughing and then crazy hugging, then I make them hold hands, drives THEM crazy. They usually want to leave the room so they don't have to "hold hands" and go off and play.

Next thing I know they are getting along, if it happens again same routine! It lightens the mood and usually stops the craziness.....

Hitting, same response with why and who and what did you do to provoke it? Acknowledgement from both parties and either sit and stare at each other until you work it out (follow me to another room if I have to leave the area), sometimes it takes awhile and people are stubborn but in the end it is usually quicker then me telling them how it is going to be, plus it makes them think about what the issue is and work through the conflict.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

Divide and conquer.
Separate corners (rooms), on different floors of the house if possible.
They can read in relative peace that way.
If the 9 yr old is pestering, why don't you stop him and let him know it's not acceptable.
Or are you hoping your 7 yr old will haul off and punch him?
When you witness a trigger event, nip it in the bud, and then don't let things escalate.
My Mom let my younger sister and I 'settle' things ourselves.
It was a disaster.
Most of the time the only thing that solved what ever issues we had was I had to knock her down and sit on her.
This continued through our teenage years until she moved out.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Rapid City on

All kids argue but insults and hitting should never be allowed. They need to have rules to their fighting so when they grow up and are in relationships they don't fight dirty. The stopping it should have been as soon as it started when they were toddlers. Now it will be harder. Don't take sides when there is a fight, put them in a time out and give them time to calm down and before they could go play, work with them to discuss the problem with you being a mediator, not a side taker. Teach them to respect each other by making them listen and not interupt while the other is talking, telling their side, then the other has to listen to the other side also. After both sides are out ask questions "What could you have done differently when this happened?" What kind of punishment do you think your part of this deserves? Don't let them give you a fluffy punishment answer, keep asking until they come up with a real punishment. What do you think you should do if this starts happening next time? Have them answer for their own part in it, not what the other should have done. End with having them appoligize to each other and remind them that hitting and insulting is never the right way to go in a disagreement and will not be tolerated in this house. Then give them the punishment they chose. This teaches them problem solving and how to handle negitive situations without losing it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Charlotte on

Separate, separate, separate. It doesn't matter who started it. Put them in their rooms every single time and don't let them out for a half hour. Then when they come out, they have to do a distasteful chore. If they start fighting during the chore, they finish the chore and go back in their rooms. Do it until they stop the fighting. When it impedes on their enjoyment of TV, computer, gameboy, x-box, ipod, everything else there is (which you WON'T allow them to do in their room, Mama), they'll start telling each other to knock it off so that they won't get sent to their room and charged with scrubbing the toilets - again.

I promise it will work if you become the drill sargeant and do it to them EVERY SINGLE TIME.

And, I just want to add - do NOT bring your husband into this. You do NOT want the kids to feel that he has more authority than you do. You set yourself up for a world of woe if you allow that. You physically march those kids into their rooms if they don't go when you say to go. Like the Army, Mom. Like the Army. Go forth and conquer!!


1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Separate them. Tell them that they CANNOT be in the same room. If you only have one television, set a schedule of who gets to be in the room with the tv at what particular time.

Soon enough they will miss each other.


answers from Erie on

I make the two offenders sit down facing each other and they have to think of 10 things they like about each other. At first, you have to monitor this situation closely. After the 3rd or 4th time, they have the hang of it and do whatever it takes to get through it. later, just the threat of having to do it snaps them out of whatever it is they're fighting about.

Sometimes I also have to explain to my kids how much it hurts me to see them fight. I'm not lying, and what kid wants to hurt his mom?


answers from Kalamazoo on

I'm sorry - are you in my house?!?!LOL!
Mine too are 9 (boy) and 7 (girl) and do the EXACT same thing - he pesters until she yells! And sometimes she doesn't just yell, she swings! and then he hits back and she yells more and cries........on and on and on....
OK - I separate them, either to their rooms or one to their room and one downstairs in the living room. Usually after about 10 min or so they are asking to play with each other again! Sometimes they just need some time apart and then are ok. They really are best friends AND worst enemies :) I also do time outs with their nose to the wall. And ANYTIME I threaten my son with loss of video game time, he'll staighten up!!!

Good Luck! You are not alone!



answers from Atlanta on

Except that our kids are 10 and almost 7, your house sounds just like ours sometimes. I wish I could say it's got something to do with the moon, but it happens too often for that. I also haven't figured out a good way to make them separate so they can calm down and reboot. And the hitting, the logical consequence is banishment, not being able to be around other people until the kid can do a makeup. My struggle is getting them to go into their room or wherever, away from other people, so they have time to reflect, calm down, and decide to make up.

Jim Dad at Home or anyone else, any suggestions for that one?

Ultimately, the key for me is finding something that they want to do (or at least one of them wants to do) and say that we can't do that until they have resolved the conflict and made up because I can't be around people who are hurting each other.

Wish I had more to offer than 'yep, same struggle...' I stay tuned to see more suggestions from the wise Mamapedias. [ETA: Jennifer P's and Stephanie P's suggestions are great.]



answers from Eau Claire on

Give them the worst punishment possible. Have them hold hands while looking at each other for 5-10 minutes. Trust me, at that age they will NEVER want to fight again. :)

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