8/12/2017

6 Crucial Tips on Preventing Sibling Rivalry

 
Sibling love is a very important part of unity in a family. When siblings don't love each other, it weakens the family, and leads to many other problems; including social issues. But we have to understand that it all starts from childhood; or even before. I will share six crucial tips on how to prevent sibling rivalry and increase love instead, inShaa Allah. 

1. Purify your intentions and make du'a (supplication)
Umar ibn Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "Surely, all actions are but driven by intentions, and verily every man shall have but that which he intended..." Al Bukharah.
Everything we do in life starts with the intention we make. By purifying our intentions and doing everything for the sake of Allah helps ease the journey and gain reward from Allah. So make the intention to have children who love each other and help each other on the straight path. Start thinking about this even before having kids, or before marriage. And don't forget to make lots of ad'iyah (duas), asking Allah to make it possible.

2. Involve your first children throughout your pregnancy
When you're expecting your next child, always involve your previous children and make them feel like their participation, care, and love matters a lot to the family and the unborn baby. When talking to the unborn baby and rubbing your belly, do that while your children are next to you, and ask them if they would like to try. When they do, smile, and let them know what a good job they are doing. Encourage them, and call them good brothers/sisters because of how kind they are to their unborn sibling. 
It always warmed my heart when my daughter would try to teach the baby when I was expecting. She loved rubbing the belly with oils and butters, and the baby was the first person she would want to speak to in the morning. Allahumma baarik 'alayki (May Allah bless her).

3. Once the baby is born, allow the older children to help
Now that the new baby is born, try not to neglect the older children. Allow them to help out; with supervision. Don't always play with the new baby while forgetting the other children. Try not to make everything about the new baby. Yes, it's normal to care more for the newborn because he/she requires more care and is more fragile; but involve the other children as much as possible. And throughout the process, praise them for their hard work, kindness, and well appreciated help. It would encourage them to want to do more, and make them feel like they matter. It would also teach them responsibility and understand that the baby needs their help. This will eventually increase their love for their new sibling, and vice versa inShaa Allah.

4. Show by actions
Love and respect your children, so they will learn what love is. Children learn better through actions. It would make no sense if you try to make them love each other while you show them little to no love. Also, if you have siblings around, interact with them in a loving way. This will also set an example for your children to follow. But don't lose hope if your family (parents, siblings, etc) isn't very loving; it is still possible to make a difference in your new family.

5. Always encourage your children to love each other
Now that you have established a pattern of love through actions, don't forget to also remind your children to love each other. Communicate with them even if they are little. When you make mistakes, let them know that no one is perfect and that people make mistakes sometimes. If they witness poor examples, don't lose hope; communicate with them. Let them know that things don't always happen the way they should, but that we should always strive to do better.

6. Trust in Allah in whatever happens afterwards
Do your best and don't beat yourself if things don't work out exactly the way you envisioned. As long as we do our best, the results aren't in our control. Allah is the One in control of all affairs, and His Wisdom is powerful. So just keep making du'a, and trust in Allah.

May Allah increase the love in our families, and the whole Muslim ummah.

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