Sibling Rivalry…Also Known As Jealousy Galore, Among Siblings! Ugh:(
Sibling Rivalry…Also Known As Jealousy Galore, Among Siblings. UGH! Kid vs. Baby(ies)
5-29-10: 12 wks. 4 days
You know I expected some jealousy from my 4 yr old, when the twins came. My son is now a teenager, and so he’s not super needy of me anymore, and despite, everybody telling me what a BIG helper, my daughter would be, when I was pregnant, I knew that was bull, at least for THIS 4 yr. old child. I knew it was going to make things harder, not easier, and I was correct. The twins should have came first:) (God thought differently).
We had always been best friends, I am a mom to, don’t get me wrong, but we did so much together, one on one, just her and me. The park, museum, Mc Donald’s, etc etc, and it was like daily girl time, so it was no shock to me, that there would be some jealousy x’s two, since 1 is hard enough for most kids, much less adding on another passenger, makes it much worse.
I honestly cried about this topic, just knowing I was pregnant with twins, and it would rock her world, but at the same time, I sat down, and thought to myself, in the long run, how good this is for her. Two sisters, I was never lucky enough to get one, and thanksgiving 20 years from now, stuff like that, but then thinking about the future, didn’t erase the problems of the present, and how honestly sad I felt for her. (Still do feel for her, 12 wk’s in).
Right from the very start, the first night home, we made her feel special with a big sister cake, and gifts, and I have taken her out more times alone, then I could possibly count, to reassure her, that she hasn’t lost her mommy. Thankfully my husband has a schedule that allows such time, during the day, but no matter what I try, these things keep happening, that are very upsetting to me.
For one, when they were two weeks and she was in the backseat she grabbed one babies’ nose with her fingers, and she had a hang nail which caused a small cut on the bridge of the babies’ nose. We felt so bad for poor Allie, but how can you drive and constantly look back in the mirrors at the same time? You can’t. So driving alone with her and the girls, became a very scary thing for me in particular.
I was so worried, and we still do worry, though that was many weeks ago, and 2 months have passed without such a car incident, you gotto keep an eye on her. I often do see her hands in their car seats, and have to say ‘what are you doing Mikayla?’, but nothing bad has happened again until yesterday. Yesterday we were coming home from grandma’s in the dark, and it’s a long drive. The girls were quiet, then Allie cried for about 5 seconds, and I asked Mikayla if she would please give her the nookie, and she did, and that was it. All seemed well with the world again.
We get home, and I get the babies inside, and I notice a very tiny little bruise on the baby’s upper nose, close, VERY close to her eyeball. It was tiny, but I knew it was not a vein as my husband first thought, I know my girls’ faces well so I was like, how did this happen since we left grandma’s? It had to be in the car. I had THOUGHT we were doing better with the sibling jealousy, BUT this was a big indicator that it is still running rampant, in the household.
Hubby went to her in her room, and used a very calm and soothing voice to talk to her, and she admitted to him that she had pushed on her, right in that spot, and showed him how she did it, and where, without prompting, and he said ‘Why did you do that’. Do you want to know what this child, my baby, said? ‘ I don’t want them to be prettier then me’. So not only do we have jealousy here, but we have a 4 yr old, who is already worried about ‘being the prettiest’? I’d think she were 14, if I didn’t know better, saying something like that, and besides these are just babies!! I wish I knew where that was coming from, I never thought about my looks at 4 or even 11..SHEESH! This worries me for certain.
There was an incident weeks back, like maybe a month or so ago, where I was changing a diaper, and you know how you tell a child to not go near the soft spot on a babies head, that is the biggest no-no ever? Whelp, I turned to get the diaper, looked back, and she honestly had an evil little grin on her face, unlike anything I had ever seen from her before, and had her finger pressing down on top of Annie’s tiny little head, in the soft spot area, and I LOST IT!! I happen to not be a spanker, to each their own, but it just isn’t me, but this was one time, I was so floored, and upset, because all had been seemingly going well for awhile there, that I screamed, and spanked her, not hard, but like I said, I don’t ever ‘do’ that, and I grabbed that baby, went upstairs and just cried, before I said something stupid.
‘How could my little girl be doing such things?’. One moment saying she loves them, and the next, seemingly wanting to harm them, I just couldn’t understand it. Again my husband took hold, and she talked with him, and showed him exactly how she did it and how hard, because we were scared. I didn’t know whether to go to the hospital or not, even though she wasn’t crying at all, she was soo small you know?
At any rate, the touch on the head, might not have been hard, BUT she knew that was no place to mess with, so I was horrified when I saw that. I told the Dr. at the pediatrician appointment, and he said it’s normal, but it doesn’t seem so normal. Apparently it is. Oh and there was another time, when I asked her what she wanted to play, and she said ‘How about baby toss?’ which of course horrified me to, I can’t imagine feeling such anger so young.
Oddly, at the same time, if I ask her, ‘Do you want me to send the babies back’, she clearly says no, and will even get emotionally upset, if you seem really serious, so I know she loves them, she’s even said so, but must hate them at the same time. I begged her to tell me how she feels, and using some child psychology, I was able to get out of her, that sometimes she feels left out.
I then explained, that we had to do these things with her brothers, when they were tiny, and with her when she was small, and it’s really not any ‘fun’, to do, to have to feed babies all the time, and change diapers, that it’s actually zero fun, & temporary, but it’s something that we gotto do, letting her know, we aren’t having a blast with them, feeding etc all of the time, so she knew that what time we spent with her, was actually fun, vs. normal baby care tasks. This is very effective, you just have to keep on repeating this when needed. Then find time alone with your child, because when they are doing these things, is when they need you most. Don’t forget that! Put yourself in their place, and be the child for that moment.
Actually, my husband just got off his computer, reading about sibling rivalry, and it said, do not yell, as hard as that may be, don’t freak out on them, because it may make them want to repeat the behavior, or make it worse, just out of spite. Put them in a time out, talk to them calmly, and figure out what the exact thoughts were behind the actions, and how they are feeling, and work through it. They are little people with big people feelings and emotions, that we need to be sensitive to.
Acting out like this, is actually normal. I thought with this much spacing (she is almost 5), that this side of things would be easier then say a 2 or 3 yr old, but not at all how it turned out.
I know she remembers her life before the babies, unlike a smaller child, so it’s extra hard, she will likely always remember life that way, but hopefully what my husband read after that rings true. That around 6 months or so, when the child (or children in my case), become more animated, and sit up, interact more, and seem more like real little humans, then fragile beings you cannot touch, things will be better, and the adjustment will be easier. A long 3+ months to go, but I hope we won’t have any more incidents. It kills me inside, and worries me to death, at the same time. Of course you want to be able to trust your child.
I always tell her 50 x’s a day how much I love her, how special she is, & beautiful, and she will always be my 1st princess, and nothing and noone could ever change that, or replace her in my heart. Then you gotto take that 1 step further, and show the child, by being there for them, and doing something special with them only.
These things should help you to, if you are also suffering with sibling rivalry. We’ll get through it ladies….we really will. I know I for one, only WISH I had some sisters of my own, so I think she’s so very lucky and fortunate, to have what I never will, and I tell her that sometimes. I wish my mom had gone for more:) She knows she will NEVER be lonely, that is for certain!
AHH..Glad I got this off of my chest. Have an awesome memorial day weekend, everybody!
Be back soon!