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Writer's Block

Steve asked me yesterday if I was going to ever blog again.  I said, "well yes, I just have not had anything interesting to write about."

I have a question.

My girls are 5 and 7 and they can get extremely jealous of one another.  The biggest cause for this comes with birthday parties.  If Emily is invited to a party SK cries and cries and cries that she can't go.  If Sarah Kate is the one invited and Emily is not, Emily will cry and cry and talk about it and talk about it.
Yesterday Sarah Kate got invited to a party at Build -a- Bear.  Emily cried her eyes out and talked about how unfair it was and so forth.
I try to sit them down and explain that they are always going to have different friends and get invited to parties for the next several years and most of the time BOTH of them will not go.  They understand that and accept it until party day comes and it always makes a miserable time the girl not going and for ME!
Is it just our family , or do you have this too?
Any suggestions?

Comments

A New Chapter said…
My brother and I were 3 years apart and I remember this happening with us. My mom ended up planning a special day for the one not invited to the party (something simple as going to chickfila playground/park/invite a friend over...etc). When my brother got to go, I felt like I was missing out on the fun so my mom made sure we went out and did something fun too :) Hope this helps!
Unknown said…
I agree with the above comment. I try and plan something fun for the other child not going to the party (bake cookies together, make dinner together, go for ice cream etc...). It helps but I will also say 7 was a hard year for my oldest son. He had a problem with jealousy bad at that age. It may be due to the fact that I had just had a baby and spent a lot of my time with the newborn but it was a HARD year for us. It got much better though so I hope that is encouraging to you.
Mary B said…
Just remember as they get older they are both going to have different & unique opportunities. What has worked for us (my kids are 17, 14 & 11) is that we celebrate each person and their gifts & accomplishments. I've always told them we are a family. Helps them to look outside themselves.
Unknown said…
My boys are 7 & 9. I just take the other one to the movies or for an ice cream & small toy. That way when the other comes home chatting away about it the other has something new they can chat about.
Amber said…
My two are 17 months apart ~ boy and girl ~ when one goes to a party, I drop them off and do something special with the other one...library, pedicure, park, etc. BUT! Sometimes I CAN'T do that...and then they have to deal with it...I use my mama's favorite saying "I will give you something to cry about" and that usually helps! Age also helps! They are 7 and 8 and this RARELY happens anymore bc they don't want to go! Hang in there!!! This too shall pass! :)
Natasha said…
I would maybe alternate a time to "do regular life" and a time to "do something fun." Otherwise birthday parties are going to get crazy expensive. There has to be some comprehension about "You don't always get to do what the other person does" and it has to start somewhere. Hopefully it's a stage which won't last too long :)
sl said…
Why not have a special mommy & date for the one not invited to the party. It could be just making cookies together at home or a trip to the pool or library. It doe snot have to cost lots of $$.
Stori said…
My parents always focused on teaching us to be happy for one another when something good happened to the other. Yes, it was hard and there were some tears as children but I think it makes for much more mature adults and MUCH better older sibling relations.
Shosh said…
I have 4 kids and obviously they all do activities/ have sleepovers/ go to parties that the others aren't invited to. They really don't complain about it but if they did I would say what I always say when they complain that someone else has something they don't " everything isn't always equal!" The end. I feel that it's good for kids to learn at an early age that life is not perfectly exactly fair and that's ok. Now if one kid was ALWAYS going to parties and another was NEVER then that might be a different story but in general I think kids need to be able to learn that they're not always going to get the same things that others are. If they think that, they're going to have a hard and disappointing life!!
thebritt said…
Gosh I hope this doesn't sound harsh but we just really reject the idea that the alternative to disappointment always has to be to make the disappointed party feel "special". I think it sets up a very dangerous pattern in life that when we're not 100% happy or satisfied with something, someone will come along and make it all better for us. Sometimes we just have to self soothe. Of course I never say THAT to my kids but I do explain that it all evens out and we simply don't tolerate personal jealousy/envy overshadowing someone's else's joy and good times. It's more of a behavior discussion vs. opportunity/activity discussion.
Heather said…
My nieces are 10 and 8. This happens occasionally with them and when it does, they just arrange for one parent (or Aunt Heather) to handle either the party child or the non-party child. The non-party child then gets extra time with a parent (or Aunt Heather) and everybody is happy. Especially Aunt Heather who can't get enough time with her girls!
*hugs*
heather
Tara G. said…
I think thebritt summarized my thoughts quite succinctly. With that said, I would also consider occasionally taking the opportunity for one-on-one time for the sake of furthering relationship, not appeasing.
Stephanie said…
My girls are now 13 and 15 and I do remember this season well. Even though I agree with what thebrit says, I've also used this opportunity in the past to have the non-party girl invite a friend over while the other is gone because it allowed the daughter not at the party to have a friend without her sister in the house (which is always nice!) and allowed me a chance to get to know a friend on a more personal level. That's not overly important now as you know all your kids' friends but as they reach middle school, you'll welcome the opportunities to observe and interact with friends whose families are not overly familiar. Thanks for allowing us to share our thoughts!!
whimzie said…
This reminds me of when Ben and Anna were about to start second grade. I'd put them in the same class for preschool and kindergarten, but Anna had decided she wanted to try being in different classes for first grade. I asked them what they wanted to do for second grade. I told them I'd let them talk about it and they could let me know what they decided. I went into the next room, but I could still hear their discussion. Anna said, "Ben, last year when we were in different classes, you sometimes got invited to parties and I wasn't invited. And I got invited to parties and you weren't invited. Let's be in the same class so we'll be invited to the same parties." Ben said, "Okay!" and the decision was made....all on the basis of not being left out of anyone's birthday parties.

I'd tell you it gets better, but it hasn't just yet! ;)
I'm with Natasha, above. Better get used to it early in life that there's not always going to be a special event for you every time you pout. Maybe just a little extra cuddle with mom and then she can help you organize the linen closet, or whatever.
Kandi said…
Annie has had a terrible time with this...mainly b/c no one loves a party more than her! I agree that they have to learn to accept that they have different friends, etc. I used to be more likely to plan something special to do when the other had a party b/c it was so upsetting, especially to Annie. Now that they are 9 and 10, I usually just make time for the other one during the party. It doesn't have to be anything expensive or big...just time with me that is totally not interrupted with phone or computer. Maybe an ice cream sundae, but can be at home. It helps that both of my girls are good about sharing their "goody bag". I hate the concept of a goody bag, btw, but culture/society is never going to go my way, so I'm thankful that they are good about sharing with sister when they get home!
Nancy said…
My 6 year old girl wants to be all up in my 13 year old boy's business when his friends come over. What I've learned though, is that they are so sweet to her & they just entertain themselves. Maybe if the younger one is involved in dance or gym or something as she grows up, it will take her mind off of sister's events as they get older?

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