Sharing isn’t caring

As expected, both of my children were showered with gifts this Christmas season. Honestly, despite all my intentions of not wanting to go overboard, I’m as guilty as the grandparents for spoiling the kiddies. Ultimately, this means that my baby boy now has a room full of toys that are all his own. And that’s where the trouble starts.

His sister, my older child, seems to not quite be over her jealously of the baby. The baby gets attention, the baby doesn’t get in trouble, the baby doesn’t have to clean his room or fold his laundry or help set the table. Taking care of the baby cuts into her time with mom and dad. And now he’s got all these great, fun toys that seem to be so much more interesting than all the great, fun toys she got.

Yes, it’s a battle. She’s in the habit now of just taking toys or plopping herself down next to the baby and slowly sneaking them away from him. “Oh, I’m just playing with him, Daddy.” “He wants to share with me, Daddy.” “He gave it to me, Daddy.” Bullshit. All of it. He has something that I have said she can’t have, and now she’s trying every angle to get it. It’s the same thing as when she tries to wiggle herself in between her brother and mother while he’s being nursed.

The hardest part is that the baby doesn’t care. His truck was taken away? Well, all right then. The Little People pirates are hidden out of his reach? That’s okay, too. Big sister “needs” the hammer he was playing with? Sure! The baby is just such an easy, go-with-the-flow kind of guy. This is great when we need to head out places, but is it too much to ask for a few tears when his sister takes his toys? Just a whimper would suffice. I don’t need full-out bawling, but it would help. She does get frightened the few times that he all-out screams.

The only thing that has worked is when I retaliated by giving him one of her dolls. Wow, did that ever set her off. “Daddy, my toys are for big kids, only!” Plus, it kept her from taking his toys… For a couple of days. That and putting up a gate to bar her from his room entirely, which turns out to be too much of a hassle for me. Unless somebody chimes in with a magic solution, I guess I just have to wait for her to get bored with his baby toys. That, or just keep up the battle.

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