Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings: How to Stop the Fighting and Raise Friends for Life

Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings: How to Stop the Fighting and Raise Friends for Life

by Laura Markham
Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings: How to Stop the Fighting and Raise Friends for Life

Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings: How to Stop the Fighting and Raise Friends for Life

by Laura Markham


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Popular parenting expert Dr. Laura Markham, author of PEACEFUL PARENTS, HAPPY SIBLINGS, has garnered a large and loyal readership around the world, thanks to her simple, insightful approach that values the emotional bond between parent and child. As any parent of more than one child knows, though, it’s challenging for even the most engaged parent to maintain harmony and a strong connection when competition, tempers, and irritation run high.
In this highly anticipated guide, Dr. Markham presents simple yet powerful ways to cut through the squabbling and foster a loving, supportive bond between siblings, while giving each child the vital connection that he or she needs.

PEACEFUL PARENT, HAPPY SIBLINGS includes hands-on, research-based advice on:

   •  Creating deep connections with each one of your children, so that each truly believes that you couldn’t possibly love anyone else more.

   •  Fostering a loving family culture that encourages laughter and minimizes fighting

   •  Teaching your children healthy emotional self-management and conflict resolution skills—so that they can work things out with each other, get their own needs met and respect the needs of others

   •  Helping your kids forge a close lifelong sibling bond—as well as the relationship skills they will need for a life of healthy friendships, work relationships, and eventually their own family bonds.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399168451
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/05/2015
Series: The Peaceful Parent Series
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 179,437
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Dr. Laura Markham is the author of Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids: How To Stop Yelling and Start Connecting and Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings: How to Stop the Fighting and Raise Friends for Life

Dr. Markham earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Columbia University in New York.  Her clinical practice is entirely devoted to coaching parents, with clients from New York to Australia (via Skype).  She monitors the pulse of parents’ needs through her very active social network, including her own web site, She speaks frequently with reporters for press as diverse as CNN and Parents Magazine and makes regular TV appearances. Dr. Markham lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn, with her family.

Read an Excerpt

“It’s Not Fair!”

Excerpted from "Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings"
by .
Copyright © 2015 Laura Markham.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Introduction xv

If You're Welcoming a New Baby xx

If Your Children Are Constantly Fighting xx

Part 1 Peaceful Parenting 101

1 How You Can Be a Peaceful Parent 3

The Parenting Skills That Help You Become More Peaceful as a Parent 7

2 How Peaceful Discipline Supports the Sibling Relationship 16

Why Punishment and Permissiveness Cause More Sibling Fighting 17

Rethinking Discipline 20

Setting Empathic Limits 23

Rethinking Time-Outs 25

Rethinking Rewards 28

The Difference Between Consequences and Limits 29

What If Empathy Doesn't Work? 32

Preventive Maintenance 36

When Your Child Is Acting Out: Time-In 41

Helping Kids with Big Emotions: Scheduled Meltdowns 43

How to Help Each Child with Big Emotions When You Have More Than One Upset Child 48

3 What Causes Sibling Rivalry-And How Parents Can Make It Better 52

Your Child's Point of View: That's Not a Friend, It's a Replacement 53

Factors That Can Exacerbate Rivalry 54

The Power of Parents to Foster a Super Sibling Relationship 60

Part 2 Teaching Peace

4 Coaching Kids to Communicate Feelings and Problem-Solve 65

Coaching Essential Emotional Intelligence Skills 67

Your New Role: Interpreter 70

Coaching Kids to Identify and Communicate Their Needs and Feelings 71

Coaching Kids to Set Limits with Each Other 75

Coaching Kids to Listen to Each Other 80

Coaching Kids to Problem-Solve 81

Basic Negotiation Tools to Teach Kids 89

5 When Problem-Solving Fails: Teaching Conflict Resolution 93

What About "We Get Along" Shirts? 93

Why Fighting Is Essential to Teach Children Relationship Skills 95

How to Help Children Learn to Work It Out Themselves 97

Empowering Kids to Stand Up to Teasing 116

Mean Words 118

When Your Child Says He Hates His Sibling 119

Intervening in a Sibling Fight: The Basics 121

Should You Punish Your Child for Aggression? 124

When Your Toddler Is the Aggressor Against Your Older Child 128

Coaching Kids to Handle Aggression from Younger Siblings 132

How to Stop Repeated Aggression 134

Teaching Skills: Intervening in a Sibling Fight 138

Helping Kids Make Repairs After a Fight, Instead of Forced Apologies 143

6 Why Can't They Just Share? Why Kids Fight Over Possessions 147

Rethinking Sharing: A Radical Solution 149

Self-Regulated Turns: What Children Learn 152

Coaching Kids as They Wait for Their Turn 155

7 Easing the Competition 161

"It's Not Fair!" 161

Never Compare 166

Resist Labeling 170

How to Celebrate Each Child Without Fueling Competition 172

Who Gets to Push the Elevator Button? 175

How to Ensure You Don't Unwittingly Foster Competition 177

Helping Kids with Competitive Feelings 178

Birth Order and Competition 181

What If You Prefer One Child? 183

8 Tools to Prevent Rivalry and Nurture Bonding 185

Expect Your Children to Value Each Other 185

Family Routines That Foster Sibling Bonding 188

Family Rules and Mottos That Support Sibling Closeness 192

How to Create More Positive Interactions Between Your Children 194

Strategies to Create a Sibling Team 196

Shifting Alliances: How to Keep Kids from Ganging Up on Each Other 198

Why Roughhousing Reduces Sibling Rivalry 199

Why Not Tickling? 205

When Kids Share a Room 205

When One Child Has a Friend Over 208

Family Meetings: The Resource You'll Be So Glad You Discovered 210

Part 3 Before the New Baby and Through the First Year

9 Before the Baby Arrives: Creating a Warm Welcome 217

Telling Your Child About the New Sibling 218

Twelve Ways to Help Your Kids Begin Bonding During Your Pregnancy 221

Be Sure Your Child Can Rely on Both Parents 224

Ten Tips to Support Your Child Emotionally as He Moves Toward Becoming a Big Sibling 227

Weaning Versus Tandem Nursing 230

Preparing Your Child for the Separation During the Upcoming Birth 232

If You're Planning to Have Your Child at the Birth 234

Creating a Transition Book for Your Child 236

Making an Activity Box for Your Child 237

Work Through Your Own Emotions About Having a Second Child 238

Loving Each Child Best 238

10 Getting Off to a Good Start: Birth and the First Few Months 240

Introducing Your Child to the New Baby 241

The First Week: Settling In as a Family 242

How to Keep Your Child Occupied While You Feed the Baby 247

Helping Your Child with Her Mixed Emotions About the Baby 249

What About Those Overzealous Hugs? 252

Regression: When Your Child Goes Backward 254

Managing Naptime and Bedtime with More Than One Child 257

The Early Months: The New Normal 260

When Your Child Has a Hard Time Adjusting 262

Daily Practices to Stay Connected to Your Child Now That He Has to Share You 265

Using Games to Help Your Child with Jealousy 271

Reading Books to Your Child About Becoming a Big Sib 274

Nine Tips to Foster a Great Relationship Between Your Children Right from the Start 275

11 Building a Positive Foundation When the Baby Begins to Crawl 279

Ten Tips to Maintain a Peaceful Home as Baby Moves Toward Toddlerhood 280

Dividing Your Time 283

How to Help Your Older Child Solve His Problems with the Little One 286

What to Say When Your Child Is Jealous of the Baby 288

What to Do About Toy Grabbing 292

When Your Child Is Aggressive Toward the Baby 294

What If the Aggressor Is Too Young to Understand? 303

What If It's the Baby Who's Aggressive? 304

Games to Help Your Children Bond with the Baby 305

Final Note: Choose Love 307

Acknowledgments 309

Notes 311

Index 313

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“This book delivers hope and help. Laura Markham brilliantly applies her respectful, attuned, limit-setting approach to sibling dynamics. Full of realistic scenarios and scripts for how parents can turn conflict into opportunities to build skills, and turn parental dread into meaningful intervention. Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings masterfully coaches parents on how to honor each child’s experience, set limits, reduce conflict, and build skills for life.” 
—Tina Payne Bryson, PhD, co-author of The Whole-Brain Child and No-Drama Discipline

“Parents need all the help they can get to be the kind of parent they want to be, and to use parenting skills that influence their children to be good citizens of the world. Dr. Laura’s book is filled with this kind of help—practical, inspiring, and encouraging though real-life examples. It would have helped me a lot when I was raising my children.” 
—Dr. Jane Nelsen, author and co-author of the Positive Discipline series

“Finally, a book that answers your questions around sibling rivalry! In this insightful book, Dr. Markham draws on scientific research to craft smart strategies that any parent can use to help their children resolve their conflicts with empathy, mindfulness and peace. A must-read for every parent.”
—Dr. Shefali Tsabary, author of The Conscious Parent and Out of Control

“Adding a child to the family creates a cascade of challenges. Dr. Laura Markham shows parents how to avoid common sibling difficulties, and how to convey their love, even in stressful situations, so children truly feel supported. Open this book, and you'll find clarity, wisdom, workable ideas, and generous helpings of respect for parents and children.”
—Patty Wipfler, founder, Hand in Hand Parenting

"Refreshingly positive and respectful in its tone, Peaceful Parents, Happy Siblings lovingly guides parents by using scripts and practical examples, essential tools for any parent with more than one child. Dr. Laura's compassionate approach is empowering for parents, and liberating for children."
—Lysa Parker and Barbara Nicholson, Founders of Attachment Parenting International, and authors of Attached at the Heart

“Brothers and sisters rejoice!  Here's a family roadmap to transform bickering kids into a connected sibling team. One third of kids have a warm caring relationship with their siblings. Read this book and your family can join the ranks.”
—Heather Shumaker, author of It's Okay Not to Share

“A phenomenal book for parents with multiple children! Dr. Markham addresses all of the common sibling issues with sensible solutions to bring peace and foster healthy relationships between siblings. This book will be my constant companion for years to come.”
—Rebecca Eanes, author of Lasting Bonds: Building Connected Families Through Positive Parenting

“Whether you are just beginning to contemplate having a second child or you are already frustrated by nonstop sibling fighting, this book is for you. I marveled at the amount of wisdom, compassion, and practical ideas packed into its pages. The wisdom begins with her gentle reminder that we have to start with ourselves if we want to make meaningful changes in our children’s relationships with each other. The compassion is in Dr. Laura’s empathy for everyone in the mix—including angry and worried parents. And the ideas aren’t just practical and usable—many of them are downright fun. You’ll laugh out loud just reading them, and everyone will laugh when you try them out. Wouldn’t that be a nice change from bickering and clobbering?”
—Lawrence J. Cohen, PhD, author of Playful Parenting

“As a parenting coach, I know that sibling struggles can be heart-wrenching for parents. Dr. Laura's strategies are right on the money to help today's parents create more peaceful homes - and stronger sibling relationships. Great work!”
—Amy McCready, founder of Positive Parenting Solutions and author of If I Have to Tell You One More Time  and The “Me, Me, Me” Epidemic

“This book walks parents through sibling scenarios – even ones for very intense children – and breaks down the specifics of how to approach common struggles, without making parents feel guilty or overwhelmed. It is a wonderful resource that gives parents the tools to not only help our children while in the midst of conflict, but also helps us to teach our children how to be the loving, kind and respectful brothers and sisters we know they can be.” 
— Gina Osher, The Twin Coach

“If you are the parent of more than one child, this is the book for you. Laura Markham begins at the beginning – the how and when to tell your child that they are about to become a big brother or sister — and then offers concrete suggestions to help you lay down the foundation for a healthy sibling relationship throughout your children’s lives. I know that I will highly recommend this book to all my clients.” 
—Rev. Susan Nason parent educator

" Dr. Laura's examples and coaching-based methodology make parenting siblings far less daunting....Her book reassures us that doing our best with the right tools, including self-regulation, connection, and coaching, can build a much happier and more peaceful family."
—Nancy Peplinsky, Founder & Executive Director of Holistic Moms Network

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