Big Kids

How to handle sibling rivalry in your family

Sibling rivalry is a common challenge that affects families every day. 

Whether you’ve just welcomed a new addition into your lives, or your older children have gotten to the stage where they notice comparisons between them and their siblings, trying to solve this issue can seem difficult. 

Between temper tantrums, arguments and hurt feelings, this stage of life may make it feel as if your children will never get along without a feeling of competition or jealousy. 

If you’re unsure about where to start when it comes to reducing sibling rivalry, check out our 5 top tips on how to handle it below.

Do things as a family

Planning activities as a family unit is a great way to avoid jealousy between siblings. This way, you can spend the same amount of time with each child and avoid anybody feeling left out.

Don’t make comparisons

Whether it’s schoolwork, height, clothing or personality, it’s often better to not compare siblings to each other. While one child may be flattered to be compared to their older sister, another may feel pressure to stand in their sibling’s shadow and not find their individuality. 

Encourage teamwork

Allow your children to work together on tasks, toys and chores so there is less competition and more teamwork in the home. This will foster a sense of unity rather than conflict. 

Promote individuality 

Encourage each child’s strengths and interests while avoiding making one child participate in their sibling’s preferred hobby. Ensure that each child has their own space and time to practise any hobby they are into. 


With younger children, they may not even know that what they’re feeling is sibling rivalry, making it difficult to express their emotions and thoughts on the matter. Make sure you allow your child the freedom to come to you with any struggles they’re having in case they are feeling compared to a sibling or like they’re not appreciated as much as their brother or sister. 

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