Relationship and parenting expert Kim Esnard shared four ways sibling rivalry can be avoided and talked about the parenting techniques Kate and William and Harry and Meghan should use with their children to avoid a family breakdown in the future, like the one Prince Harry and Prince William recently experienced.
The parenting and relationship expert explained that the number one tip is to encourage “I” and not “you”.
Kate and William, as parents, should “encourage siblings to talk to each other in a respectful way and to use ‘I’ statements when expressing their feelings, rather than more confrontational or accusatory ‘you’ statements,” the expert advised.
According to Mrs Esnard, one “child saying that ‘I felt left out when you didn’t let me play with you’, is a more constructive way to start a conversation than ‘you left me out of your game’”.
The expert recommended avoiding “unhealthy competition” and instead trying to make it “healthy and constructive for children”.
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“From an early age, getting them to celebrate each other’s wins and achievements as you celebrate them as a family and honour the unique gifts that each child brings makes this an easier transition during the different stages of childhood,” the expert explained.
She commented that Kate and William, for example, should avoid “unhealthy rivalry by not comparing grades or expressing disappointment if they have a different way of learning to their sibling, and avoiding comparing them to others”.
It is also imperative parents set aside “golden time”, as this is one of the “biggest keys to decreasing sibling rivalry”.
Parents should make an effort to spend one-on-one quality time with each sibling, perhaps setting aside time each week or month for an activity that they enjoy, the parenting guru explained.
In order to “strengthen the relationships” between their children, both Meghan and Harry and William and Kate should show “an interest in their interests to make them feel valued as a unique and individual child”.
Allow children to find their own resolutions is also important to avoid problems in the future, the expert pointed out.
“Remember that all behaviour is communication and that children need to be taught, modelled, and given strategies for helping them to recognize their feelings,” Mrs Esnard said.
The royal couples should find appropriate ways to help their children express their feelings and “when all children are calm and no longer triggered, let them take the lead on how they might resolve things”.
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“This is a technique many parents use and believe will help their child understand why they are being disciplined more clearly,” the expert added.
This technique also allows the child to express their feelings at the same time which creates a “more calming atmosphere”.
The expert explained: “When disciplining their children, it has been revealed that Kate and William are firm in outlining any consequences of bad behaviour but never raise their voices. Often when a parent shouts, it is met with the same level of frustration from the child, which can fuel the situation.
“Calmly speaking to your children – but in a firm tone – is a great way to diffuse the situation while getting your message across in a clear and precise manner.”