Ask the Child Therapist Episode 10: How to Help Your Kids with a Large Sibling Age Gap
Dealing with a large sibling age gap?
Many of us are having kids spread far apart. Some of us are just taking a big break in between kids and some of us are starting a new chapter, with a new relationship. Regardless of the reason, more and more of us are dealing with toddlers and teens [gulp] at the same time. So how do you help your kids deal with a large sibling age gap?
Sometimes older kids can feel slighted. They can feel ignored. They can feel resentful. So how do you help your kids deal with the change? How do you help them feel just as loved and cared for, even when you have little people dripping off of you?
My oldest child is eight years older than my youngest. What was once excitement for a little baby
doll sister, is now a growing annoyance. Sometimes this hostility can come on suddenly and other times it is a slow simmer. This can depend on the sibling age gap and the dynamics between the siblings.
We can’t plan our life around the best age gap for siblings, life just happens. But what we can do is actively work on fostering a bond and minimizing resentment when our children have a large sibling age gap.
Large age gaps between siblings can be an amazing thing. Besides having a built in babysitter (hey, it’s true), there are benefits for your children as well.
Here are some quick tips to help with a large sibling age gap:
-Carve out special mom and child time with your oldest child.
-Highlight privileges that are unique to just your oldest child.
-Develop areas where your oldest child is a mentor for your youngest child.
Do you have a 5 year age gap between siblings? A 4 year age gap between siblings? What do you think are the best age difference between siblings? Leave a comment and share.
Do you know someone who is raising kids with a large sibling age gap? Share this article with them.
Additional Reading on Sibling Relationships:
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