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How can I get my 14 & 15 year olds (son & daughter) to spend some time with their 13 month old brother?

The baby just adores him. They will occasionally spend quality time with the baby but I have to force them. It's not that they ignore him all the time but they could definitely play with him more. I just asked them to take the baby for a walk to the park behind my house for a 1/2 hour...they procrastinated until it got too rainy, then got their umbrellas and left without him. It was so sad, he started crying when they closed the door behind themselves. This or something similar happens all the time.


Asked by benjamink at 7:57 PM on Aug. 8, 2009 in Teens (13-17)

Level 10 (378 Credits)
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Answers (14)
  • My mom had one of my younger sisters when i was 15. I love my sisters so much, but at that age, I wanted to just be by myself. When she was about 3 though, she'd lay in my room with me and watch Star Wars and Harry Potter. I loved that age. She'd fall asleep next was so adorable.

    Give your boys some time. Once the baby is older, the boys will be able to do more with him, be able to play a bit more.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:39 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • I can't imagine any teens wanting to spend time with a baby, sorry. Teens have a life and don't want to be burdened with little kids. I can't believe after having kids that old that you'd do that all over again.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:00 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • That I'd raise anther child? I love and enjoy my children. I have no problem with sharing my life with another child. If you're too selfish to want to do that, that's your problem, not mine.

    Answer by benjamink at 8:04 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • I think youre asking too much from them. You said that they spend SOME time with him. Thats great. Babies and toddlers usually adore their older siblings but its not a case to make them watch him or spend time with him. My teen loves my 3 yr old. They are very very close, but there are times when she has to go and he doesnt get to go. He cries for her when shes gone and sleeps in her bed, and I am glad that he loves her and she loves him, but I wont force her to spend time with him. If I need a baby sitter, I ask in advance and I do pay her. I think its only fair to treat her as a regular babysitter. Its not her job just because shes the sibling. As they get older, they will mature and want to spend more time with him and remember as he gets older, he will be more fun to them. Wait until hes 3 or 4, the big brother will LOVE teaching him to play ball and wrestle. Give it time. Good luck.

    Answer by momofsaee at 8:05 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • first poster....totally uncalled for. Many of us have older kids and chose to space our kids out for many reasons. Yes, I have two in between, but many of us have circumstances that didnt allow us to have kids so close or we simply chose not to completely lose our minds by having 3 in diapers. Heck, I have a 15 yr old, a 13 yr old SISTER and I have an 11 yr old. My mother chose to do it over and thats her choice. I just think your choice of comments was tacky.

    Answer by momofsaee at 8:07 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • I need to clarify. I'm not saying that I want them to babysit him...although they do do that occasionally. I'm talking about play-time. I just think that they spend hours on end with their Ipods, computers and video games, napping and watching tv, talking on the phone etc. Some of that time should be utilized forming a relationship with their brother.

    Answer by benjamink at 8:10 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • I guess I feel this way because I remember when my mom had my little brother. Granted, it was not as big of an age gap (9 years) but I had so much fun with him...I hate to see them miss out on this stage of development because they're so wrapped up in things that can wait.

    Answer by benjamink at 8:13 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • You can and should limit TV and computer time, especially with school starting (we have a limit of an hour a day on during the school year).

    Answer by rkoloms at 9:41 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • To a teenager those things can never wait. I do not think you are asking to much but I do understand their point of view as well. Maybe make a family night?

    Answer by imtheonlysane1 at 9:42 PM on Aug. 8, 2009

  • Another thought; sometimes kids that age are embarassed by a baby; they have a very difficult time dealing with a mom who is sexually active.

    Answer by rkoloms at 9:42 PM on Aug. 8, 2009