My kids fight. I’m sure all siblings do, I know my brother and I did as well as The Spouse and his brother. Just because they fight *I don’t mean physical knock-down drag out fights, I mean verbal whining fights*, doesn’t mean I want to always referee even when they come to me with the issue. I prefer they figure these things out for themselves or at least argue where I don’t have to hear it. This morning they decided they wanted to have a row –from what I could make out General Disarray was annoying Professor Chaos, so Professor Chaos started pushing General Disarray towards his own toys and away from the area where Professor Chaos was-, when that didn’t work they decided to come find me! I was busy in my room making some list for our trip and upon hearing the “MOM” screams growing closer I laid my head down hoping they would think I was sleeping and run off to work it out.

I had no such luck; instead they remained shouting my name over my fake snores. Realizing I wasn’t getting out of referee duty today I rolled over to them both explaining the situation. Each expecting me to take their side, sometimes I will listen to both sides and make a judgment…today though I decided to be lazy. Yup, I was a lazy referee…I had no need for an instant replay instead I did the following:

Me: “Face each other…drop your toys…move closer to one another”General Disarray: “We can’t get any closer!”Me: “Good now both of you put your arms around your brother” *arms slowly extend and wrap around each other*…”Now stay that way”…

I then went back to what I was doing. They stayed that way for about a minute or so before they started to get upset with me. I asked if I was being annoying for having them stand that way, they said yes, I asked if they liked being annoyed… they said no. Then I gave them a choice, either make-up, work out their differences, and play nicely or remain standing locked together.

They are currently playing…they choose to work it out and all I had to do is give them a common annoyance. Possibly not the most effective form of parenting, but it got the job done this morning.

Copyright(c)2011 Rayven Holmes


  1. Hahahahahaha... creative & brilliant solution!

  1. Nice parenting moment!

  1. one of my friends told me her parents would make her and her sister kneel and hug whenever they were fighting. i have used that with my two boys more than once!!!

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