daughters fighting - what to do?

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2003
daughters fighting - what to do?
4
Sun, 11-16-2003 - 11:31am
i'm wondering if anybody here can give me advice .....

I have two daughters aged 12 and 14, and they will not stop wrestling and tussling with each other. I am divorced and am remarried, and my husband does not feel comfortable physically separating them. They don't really hurt each other much, and they wrestle mostly out of fun, but we don't like it anyway. They tend to do it more when they are alone at home with my husband, as they can get away with more stuff with him.

It usually involves the older girl sitting on the younger girl's stomach with her knees on her shoulders laughing at how red her face is, but usually degrades to pulling each ohter's hair. Just the other day, we came home to find the one girl had the other in a tight scissor hold with her legs around the other girls neck facing each other, and her face was so red I thought it was going to explode. The thing is that as I said they don't fight seriously, and seem to actually have fun doing it.

Any ideas on what my husband and I should do/ not do?

Thanks,

Rebecca

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-16-2003
Sun, 11-16-2003 - 7:04pm
siblings fighting is quite natural. My sister and I fought CONSTANTLY and there was 7 years difference in our ages LOL. It is commonly refered to as "sibling rivalry" and I figure they do it more around your husband because he makes more of an issue than you do. They are girls and are viying for his attention lol. What to do? Tell your husband to chill out and when they start tusseling either send them to another room, outside or get up and leave the room himself
Avatar for heartsandroses2002
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 11-17-2003 - 12:04pm
My two dd's, ages 14 and 16 starting wrestling more when they hit 11/13 - my immediate older sister and I were brutal (she was bigger and beefier than me) to each other. My mother only stepped in NEVER, but there were a few times when my sister left bruises and I wished my mom had stepped in.

For the most part, my H (he is also their stepdad) and I will usually tell them,"okay that's enough"..."Stop before someone gets hurt"...and finally, "When someone gets hurt, don't come crying to us". And then, we stick to that. We give them fair warning, but really, they are old enough to know what the inevitable end will be - someone will get hurt.

I have, however, sat them down and discussed being brutal to one another, ie., the tight scissor hold, pinned on the floor with a bright red face - I would definitely let each of them know that move and any other like it will result in double groundings, no exceptions, even if only one is to blame. I've done this and stuck with it and it mostly works. They don't really try to maim one another - just wrestle and torture tickling. Only rarely does it lead to a full out war and rarely do H and I intervene anymore.

Sometimes they are screaming in pain and laughing at the same time - I remember those days!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-17-2003
Thu, 11-20-2003 - 11:34pm
thanks for responding and the advice - it has sort of turned out the way you say, kind of naturally. If they don't really hurt each other, we sort of let them wrestle.

I'm concerned about the frequency that they do this. They wrestle pretty much every day - howabout your girls?

Also, they pull hair an awul lot too - do your girls do that? They seem to be getting to old to keep doing this stuff - I mean the other day my 14 year old niece was over, and my husband was home alone while I went out with my sister, and my niece said her older cousin was sitting on her younger sister's stomach with her knees holding down her shoulders for 10 minutes straight at one point while she struggled to get out from under her. And when my husband asked them to stop fooling around the girl on bottom said she can get out on her own and didn't need his help - they're like two competitive cats.

Don't know if I should be signing these girls up for the local girl's wrestling team :-) or punishing them more....

what do you think?

Avatar for heartsandroses2002
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 11-21-2003 - 11:04am
I don't know what or when sisters are too old for hair pulling, each kids grows and develops on her own. Plus,if this is typical for them, it could be just a matter of time before they finally outgrow it and find other ways of expressing themselves. I think that wrestling and such is normal, but I don't like the sound of that pinning stuff going on.

My girls do not pull hair much anymore, they mostly push and pull each other down. I've taught them how to feet fight on the couch to help them move away from the actual wrestling. My sister's and I used to have feet fights all the time - they were so fun and burned off excess energy.

Also, one thing I learned along the way is that my dd's are both very different - they each have their own distinct personality, likes and dislikes - they are almost complete opposites. Therefore, they have taken up activities that don't leave them much time to wrestle, etc. My 14 dd takes voice on afternoon, cheerleading two afternoons, and works for my sister one afternoon. My 16dd usually goes to her friend's house afterschool and takes guitar once a week. So, you see, there isn't a whole lot of time for them to wrestle anymore. This happened quite by accident - most wrestling occurs either later in the evening or on the weekends. I also keep them busy in the evenings by getting them to help with dinner, walk the dogs, etc.

Make sure that your dd's have extra-curricular activities that will help them burn off energy, have a chat about the hair pulling and try to keep them busy.