Sibling Sitting: Do’s and Don’ts
Looking after younger siblings by yourself can be one of the hardest babysitting jobs. You share a relationship so close that you can get into trouble sometimes, whether it be an argument about who left a mess in the kitchen or why you don’t want to play dolls with your little sister. So, when you finally are old enough to be home alone and watch younger siblings, certain situations are bound to get troublesome from time to time. Here are some helpful Do’s and Don’ts to consider for the next time you sibling sit:
- Keep a close watch over your younger siblings, but also keep your distance. You wouldn’t want an older sibling to hover over you the whole time your parents are gone, so don’t do it to them. Give them space if they want to do their own thing, but still make sure you know what is happening at all times.
- Do something collaborative. Invite your little school-aged brother downstairs to play or watch television instead of letting him stay in his room the whole time. Enjoy quality time with your siblings.
- Remember that you’re their sibling even though you are also temporarily an authority figure. If your parents did not make it clear before they left, be sure to remind your siblings in a calm, nice way that your parents left you in charge.
- Try to not bring up past arguments. Make the environment fun instead of full of arguments about things that won’t matter in the next ten minutes.
- Don’t threaten to tell your parents about every little thing your siblings do wrong. When they won’t listen to you, it can be tempting and easy to say, “I’m going to tell mom.” But this is not an effective method of dealing with bad behavior. Use your Safe Sitter® Behavior Management Tips to effectively control the situation.
Now that you have a few helpful cues under your wing, don’t be afraid to take on the new and exciting job of babysitting your siblings! For more do’s and don’ts and tips and tricks, visit our babysitting blog!
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