What should you do about a 16 month old showing signs of jealousy?

Dealing with a jealous child can be difficult for everyone involved. What are some ways to remedy the situation without making it worse?

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9  Answers

4 26

I have 4 children ages 6, 5, 3, and 17 months. What works for us to keep the jealousy monsters at bay is to give each child their own special alone time with just mom, just dad, and mom & dad. It really makes them all feel equally loved and appreciated and really helps tone down bickering between them.

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22 7

I think perhaps the individual time is not the best way to do things. I mean maybe parents should do stuff as a family...showing each child that they have to pull their own weight in the family. You know so the jealousy bug stops it's cycle. If children are explained to that baby needs mommy moreso then the older child because such and such... or go for a family walk and let the older sibling push the stroller or while talking and explaining stuff to the baby have the older sibling demonstrate the process for the baby...just make things flow this way so they are raised together, depending on each other, sort of like herding, maybe this will play on stregths and sibling rivalry will not be a difficult situation to approach. ~just my thoughts

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1 8

I would have to agree that taking alone time with each of the children really helps. I have a two year old and a five month old so I still learning ways. I use going to the grocery store as an oppurtunity to take my son just me and him. Also, when my husband gets home the first thing he really does is spends at least 15 mins playing with him and then he comes and sits down to relax ect. then after dinner and he showers he does belly time and plays with our daughter and gives her the last bottle before bed. I take my son outside and play with my daughter while he plays and also when he naps. That's just the way we do it and we notice that just the short more frequent alone times really helps.

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1 0

I had this problem with youngest son. When I would hold my older son, the younger son would get jealous and cry or try to push his older brother away. My children are 2 years apart. I figured it would have been the other way around - older son jealous of younger son. I have found spending time with them each by themselves and doing many many activities with me together has helped tremendously. They are both mama boys and that is okay as long as they are not fighting over me. That part gets hard, so when I see this happen, I find an activity we can all do together - in a way it distracts them and at the same time (I like to think) they can see we can all have fun together! I don't know if this will help for others, however, it helps with my two boys!

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29 11

I have the same problem with my 2 yr old. I also have a 5 and 4 yr old. I figure it happened because when he was a baby, as all babies do, he required more attention than the older children did. Now I reassure him that I love him all the time, as I do with the other children but I don't give in to him. He waits his turn like the other children. It is impossible to spend equal amounts of time with each child since every child has different needs and I think you would drive yourself crazy with worry and feeling bad if you tried. Your 16 month old will just have to adapt to every one's schedule, if you feed in to this it will only get worse. If your baby tantrums because of it I would say time-out just like any other unwanted behavior. It's also a power thing with little ones and if you let him get all of the attention because he's jealous the older one(s) may start feeling neglected. This is just my opinion but if you let it amount to anything more, when the terrible 2's hit it is only going to get worse. They are too young to reason with so as long as you calmly approach the situation, timeouts when appropriate, and you don't act or feel like you're not doing the right thing....then I think he'll get used to the idea that you're someone else's mommy too. Another thing that may help is try to think of activities that the siblings can do together or even that the older one can 'teach' to the little one, that may help them bond and learn to share you :) Hope something here helps...good luck.

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19 158

Spend an equal amount with each child that are related to the jealous sibling. Make them all feel that you are being fair with your own individual attention. Debbie

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27 37

My 4 year old is fine with the 16 month old. However the younger son does not like to see someone else with mommy, even if it is his older brother. This seems like a reversed role.

Since each child has a different personality I would experiment with several suggestions and see what works for your family.

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90 6

I would make sure that I provided my older with enough attention, sometimes with a new baby they get left out because of how much attention newborns/infans require. I would also allow him to help me whenever possible. I would ask him to get me a diaper or I would let him sit on my lap and hold baby brother and feed him a bottle. It made him feel like a big boy and it allowed him to help me out. But to me, I think the most important thing is like I said before. Giving the older child as much attention as possible so they don't feel like you're forgotten about them!

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22 7

In sibling jealousy I allowed my older girl to help in the caretaking of her younger brother. Not laborous stuff and not simply trashing the diaper but putting a blanket on baby brother when he slept or patting his back. This gives the older sibling purpose that it actually does matter as the big sister/brother.

In social circles, if the child has a great toy and my child becomes jealous, I just distract my child with something else. Balls work wonders and so does a pool of water.

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1 1

i make sure to have alone time with my older child, for instance right before nap/bed time so he knows that spending time with him is important to me. i also try to let him know as many times as i can how much i love him and how i love being his mommy.

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