Why is sharing so hard??

Candace - posted on 06/20/2011 ( 1 mom has responded )

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My son is 21 months old and has now reached the stage of not wanting to share. He does well when playing with kids. For example, I have 13 month old twin nephews and the three of them were playing in our sandbox and my son did very well with sharing the cars and shovels when they played together. When one of the twins got into our one and only swing, however, he got very possesive and cried and carried on.

On that same day (it was a very traumatic day for us), my six year old nephew let my son play with his Transformer guy. When my nephew left, he asked, very nicely, for his toy back to go home. My son again cried and carried on because he didn't understand why he couldn't keep it. My nephew felt so bad. He is such a sweet boy with soft feelings. I tried to explain to my son that it wasn't his and that he was just borrowing it and that is was very nice for my nephew to let him see it.

My question is, finally, how do I explain this to my almost 2 year old or is it a fact of life that he has to work through on his own?

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Melissa - posted on 06/21/2011

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I think fully understanding the explaination will have to wait until he's older. I think he might get the gist of it, but his emotions are going to overpower any understanding he's able to have. I think what's best at this point is for you to simply encourage sharing, praise him when you see him sharing nicely and make it a big deal. If you see him taking something or not sharing in any way, let him know he needs to share; sometimes with my son I have to actually take the toy or whatever from him and hand it to the other child. He always gets upset at this, but then I give him something else to play with and remind him that he needs to share. I think it's definitely a fact of life, and he'll eventually work through it, but I would recommend keeping up with encouraging sharing and discouraging not sharing; it might help get things moving faster.

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