The bickering stops when the on-screen violence starts!

My boys are starting to bicker. And it’s driving me crazy.

They are 3½ years apart in age and up until now the older has cherished and looked after the younger. Whilst the younger adored and looked up to his older brother.

However, aged 6½ and 10 and things are quite different. These days it’s not unusual to hear outlandish words like, “Mum, my life would be a whole lot better if my brother were dead!” and “Why didn’t you just stop at one baby, Mum? I want to be an only child!”

Of course they love eachother deeply and fiercely. They just can’t (or won’t) show it…right now.

Thankfully they don’t playfully assault eachother physically (yet!). I think my sanity would be tested to the brink if I regularly heard the crash and wallop of fisty-cuffs within the parameters of a small bedroom. Or, worse, if one of them came to me with a black eye and swollen lip from his brother’s strong right hook.

No, at the moment, it’s purely verbal assaults.

But last weekend I had a strange realisation. They get on best when they’re killing eachother…on the Wii! When they’re playing James Bond’s “Quantum of Solace” (rated 12) and merrily trying to sabotage eachother with an arsenal of weapons, they converse like they’re best buddies having the time of their lives.

Surely this is the wrong way round? Isn’t the time to embed a deep-seated antagonism towards your sibling is when he’s jamming a Walther PPK (that’s a gun favoured by 007, donchaknow) into your face?

Instead, a regular cacophony of squabbling ensues over a stolen red Sharpie that’s been filched to finish a Spiderman drawing!

Common thought on this matter is that we should leave our darlings to sort out grievances between themselves so they’re better equipped in adulthood to cope with conflict – both personal and professional. I endorse this logic on an intellectual level but in practical terms, it’s sometimes hard not to intervene.

Did you and your sibling fight? Did your parents get involved? I’d love to hear your thoughts – leave a comment below.

Leave a Reply