Conflict is normal, but the way parents respond is critical.
Research finds that sibling conflict is quite normal, yet that doesn't make it easy or enjoyable! In fact, many parents identify sibling conflict as the most common problem in their families.
In addition, while conflict is common, studies have shown that high levels of sibling conflict can lead to later increases in children's anxiety, depressed mood, and delinquent behavior. Additionally, how parents respond to sibling squabbles really matters. Several studies have found that when parents are lacking effective skills for handling sibling conflict, kids are more likely to show difficulties in other areas of their lives as they get older.