www.whyville.net Apr 24, 2011 Weekly Issue

Guest Writer

Survival of the Teens: Moms and Siblings

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Okay, okay. Moms. We all love 'em. They gave birth to you, and, if your mother loves you then you probably love her back. Oh, and there's those pesky siblings, too. I guess we love them. We can be two peas in a pod or polar opposites, but siblings are siblings.

But that doesn't mean there aren't those bad days when all we want to do is scream at them until their hearts break. I know I've had my share; those days when you're absolutely enraged at your mother/sibling for whatever reason. Maybe you just woke up and you're "cranky", as they might put it. Maybe it's those pesky hormones, or maybe you had a bad day. Whatever the reason, learning how to deal with your mom and/or siblings so you fight less is crucial.

Note: I am not an expert. Believe me, I still fight with my mom and sister. I still get angry with them, and I still run crying to my room with the idea that I hate them on those bad days.

Stay Calm

Okay, this is one thing I'm good at: keeping my head. If your mom starts yelling at you, whether it's because you did something wrong or because she's simply angry . . . stand your ground and keep quiet. Do not yell back. Do NOT tell her you hate her, and do not try to run off to hide behind a locked door. If you keep your head and stay calm long enough (I find that crossing my arms and staring into the distance is very useful), she will eventually calm down and you can explain your side of the situation, whatever the situation may be. Yelling will probably only make her (and you) angrier. If if turns out badly, you can still run off to your bathroom and cry in the shower, rant to a friend or rip up Mr. Teddy. This always helps.


What was that yelling match for? Oh, yes, you whacked your sister upside the head with a mirror and she screamed at you. Your mother got involved and SHE ended up screaming at you, too. She may have accused you of being overly violent, untrustworthy, or something else that hurt you. Anyway, in the aftermath, once you've all calmed down, try and apologize. Sounds cheesy, I know. But mothers can be awfully weird this way. If you give an apology, even it's something like "Sorry for yelling" or, "I'm sorry for hitting Susie," she'll forgive you and you can move on.

Avoid It

You can stop arguments in the first place by following the rules or remember the last argument you had, and why it occurred in the first place. The obvious thing to do is to refrain from repeating that action. Yelling matches and arguments are stressful and not worth doing whatever it is you had in mind. EXAMPLE: Your sister throws a crayon at you/hits you/says something very nasty and you're about to retaliate . . . refrain. Instead, I find that taking a hot shower, listening to music or punching some inanimate object can vent off a whole lotta' steam.

Don't Wanna' be a Tattler

Do you have a sibling? Do you and your sibling get into fights often? Do you often run to your mom, telling her what your sister/brother has done, or vice-versa? Well, have I got the solution for you! Try making a pact with said sibling to not be a tattle-tale. It really never does much. So, you tell your mom that Johnny punched you. The likely reaction is "JOHNNY!", "Mmhmmm'", or "I don't want to hear it." If you can agree to not make a fuss over small fights, then there will be less trouble afoot. I know, I know, this sounds rather stupid and impossible since the obvious reaction is to want to tell someone about who did what to whom. But, just give it a try. But remember, I said small fights. If Johnny breaks your arm you should probably tell someone.

Green-Eyed Envy

If you have a sibling, I'm sure there's been a time when you felt that your parents loved Johnny more than they loved you. It may be because he/she got a better birthday, or he got something new, or they praised him more for something. This can (obviously) lead to jealousy and anger, which can lead to sadness, anger, violence . . . There's one thing to remember here: Your parents love you just as much as they love little Johnny over there. Well, they do unless they say, "We love Johnny more. You're a failure." Otherwise, parents have unconditional and undivided love for each of you. Just remember all the times that you got something better, or you were praised more than your sibling.

I hope this helps you (and me, Lord Voldemort knows I need it . . .) to fight less with your mom and sibling. The basics are to stay calm, never resort to violence, come to some agreement, forgive the ones you love and remember they love you.



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