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Forcing siblings to play together

Posted by Anonymous
  • 16 Replies
Do you MAKE your kids play together even if one doesn't want to play with the other? Sometimes my 6yo wants to play alone which is fine with me but when 4yo tattles dh makes 6yo let 4yo play with him and share. And when your kids get a new toy do you make them share with each other or is it you get what you get??
Posted by Anonymous on Jul. 30, 2014 at 11:23 PM
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by on Jul. 30, 2014 at 11:27 PM
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I don't make my kids play together. If they want a toy the other has, they wait their turn. If they want to play alone, no problem. If they want to play with the other kids, but the others don't want to play.... Then tough poo poo go play by yourself lol. Most of the time when my kids don't want to play together it's cause one was mean to the other.
by Bronze Member on Jul. 30, 2014 at 11:30 PM
I have kids I babysit like this. The one seems to want alone time just to bug the other kids.
by Member on Jul. 30, 2014 at 11:33 PM

i don't make them lpay together DD7 and DS6 are always arguing over somethign w/in minutes of playing to gether so if one wants some alone time i snag the other one n watch cartoons or play a game. kids need solo time too. As far as toys it depends on the toy really, when they just get it that day i remind them to share but not "your 10mins is up give to (other kid)" 

by on Jul. 31, 2014 at 1:58 AM

Starting with your last question:  my two older kids shared a room and were very close in age, so just keeping track of who's toy was whose was a challenge.  I allowed them to keep a few favorite toys separate (lovees that they slept with at night and things like that).  When they got a new toy they got to keep it all to themself  for that day, then had to share it after that but their brother still had to ask.    Eventually toys would sort of move into the common pile and become shared toys, unless one of my son continued to show a strong attachment to it.  You know how it goes...some toys kids just really build an attachment to, contantly play with, and want to guard.  Others they love at first but then loose interest in...and I finally told kids, if you haven't cared about this toy for months you can't suddenly claim THAT'S MINE if you're brother happens to be playing with it.   So I only let them claim a few toys as theirs and theirs alone.

Now that they have money to buy some of their own toys my two older boys will combine their income to buy better cooler lego sets and such they share...and they do this on their own accord.  Cause honestly once they started paying for their own things I wasn't going to force any type of sharing.  But they went that way on their own.  Their little brother, who had a bigger age gap with both of them, however, I don't always make them share with, because he looses or breaks things and I understand that.  

Now about playing together, that's different.  My two oldest, while born close together, are opposite personalities--one's an extreme extrovert and ones an extreme introvert.  I've had cases where one locked himself in my room because his brother wouldn't leave him alone, while the other was banging on the door crying because "he won't play with me."  I tried to explain to my extrovert that his brother needed time alone to recharge (it's true, introverts do).  Meanwhile I tried to encourage my introvert to play with his brother once he'd had some time alone to play...but I wouldn't force it because, well, forced play doesn't usually go well.  ONE EXCEPTION though...if my introvert promised to play with my extrovert, and then renigged, I'd make him keep his promise (or I'd threaten to find something else for him to spend his time on, like doing chores).  

And, I will sometimes make the older two play with their little brother occassionally...this partially came out of the not making them share thing.  Sure, they didn't have to let him take toys and take them places he might loose them, but if they weren't going to do that, occassionally they had to include him in their play.  I just didn't like him being left out all the time.  AND, sometimes I just needed their help with him honestly...sometimes I'd let them play with him in stead of doing a chore, if they could keep him occupied while I did taxes or cleaned up glass on the floor or stuff like that.  

by Member on Jul. 31, 2014 at 2:00 AM

i don't make them. they do when they want

by Anonymous 2 on Jul. 31, 2014 at 2:08 AM

I make them play together for a little bit but also allow them to play alone without intrusion from siblings.  if any toys i bought were for all of them i make them share.  If it was an individual gift i leave the option of sharing up to the kid that owned said toy.

by on Jul. 31, 2014 at 2:10 AM

He (she?) might just be an introvert.  Strong introverts may enjoy playing for a while, but if they don't get time alone they just feel restless, irritated, and drained.   While strong extroverts are the opposite...playing by themselves feels draining and they just have this need to be around people.  I have children, born close together, with  these opposite personalities...and it's a struggle sometimes.  Yeah, they do sometimes USE this  to intentianally make the other one crazy, but that really just stems from their own need (one for quiet time alone, the other for social interaction).    Sometimes my introvert just needs time alone and it comes off as being meah...sometimes he WANTS to be mean and since he prefers to be alone anyways uses this to Irk his brother, just like sometimes when my introvert starts withdrawing, my extroverts will bug him and get in his face both because he feels deprived and wants the social interaction, AND because he knows it bothers him.  I'm continually trying to find ways for them to get what they need without driving each other crazy.  

Quoting applesnbananas: I have kids I babysit like this. The one seems to want alone time just to bug the other kids.

by Member on Jul. 31, 2014 at 2:10 AM
Why would I torture myself with the fighting? And they took turns playing with toys.
by on Jul. 31, 2014 at 3:05 PM

I have a six year age gap so I don't run into this issue often. I've caught them playing dolls together which is nice but I feel like if I push it my older one will be nasty to the little one and hurt her feelings even more.

by Bronze Member on Jul. 31, 2014 at 3:07 PM
Mine are almost 6 years apart and they love playing together. My oldest rarely plays alone. They both have special toys they don't like to share and I'm cool with that.
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