No one warned me about all the gushy feelings I would get everyday watching my boys play and love on each other. Now don’t get me wrong, they fight and argue as much as the next at 4 and 18 months. But when they love, they love hard and it’s sooo beautiful! 💙😍💙
I often catch them hugging it out and exchanging an, “I Love You” with each other. Or Duce saying, “Good job, Elisha!” and Elisha requesting hugs and high fives. My momma ❤ #heartexplodes. It’s pure #BlackBoyJoy 🤎🤴🏾🤴🏾🖤
As someone who grew up with an inseparable bond with my twin sister, I always desired that my children would have a similar bond. I never wanted my boys to feel like they had to compete with one another. Instead, I want them rooting for each other. So in doing that, I’ve been very intentional about making sure their is some good, quality, sibling, brotherly love! Here’s how:
Big Brother Role. Even before Elisha was born, we called him by name-Duce actually chose his name. We shared with Duce how he was going to be a great big brother and all the fun things he could do with Elisha and show him. It was a prideful role that we fostered in him, and came to life once E was born.
Brother’s Keeper. We are always reminding Duce that he’s to love, protect and advocate for his little brother at all times. In his actions and words. Speak up for him when he can’t for himself (I think Duce understood Elisha’s baby talk before I did!😂) Protect him from harming himself or others trying to harm him. “Elisha you can’t play with that. You’re going to burn yourself buddy.” Duce’s favorite rational when he doesn’t want to share their kitchen. 😂
Hug it Out. My husband’s favorite. Boys will argue, hit and be mean. They have a lot of stamina and assertion built up in them naturally. It’s normal to disagree, get mad, even want to hit as a lack of knowing how to appropriately communicate your feels at this age. And when you do, you take responsibility by saying, “Sorry,” and “HUGGING IT OUT!” Arguing, “HUG IT OUT!” Yelling, “HUG IT OUT!” Not sharing, “HUG IT OUT!” And if you’re Elisha, you’re accompanying it with an “I love you!” 🥰
Sharing is Caring. This can be hard for any child, but it’s a skill that is first learned at home and transcends in the classrooms and community. So yes the boys have their own toys, but we also buy them “brother toys” that are both of theirs to share with one another. Like tents, kitchens, sport balls, cars, pools, activity tables, etc. This fosters opportunities to play together through imaginative play, physical exercise and creativity. They also learn to take turns and have patience with one another.
Teaching. We encourage Duce to teach Elisha new things too. He loves being Teacher Duce! This can be colors, counting and even how to do puzzles and build train tracks. He even models reading- how to read a book and the love for books.💙📚💙 Elisha loves learning from Duce- getting all his attention. He’s such a smart baby and B and I can’t take all the credit! Teacher Duce puts in work!😂🧑🏽🏫
Bible. We show them examples in the Bible of brothers loving, forgiving and caring for one another (Romans 12:10, Ephesians 4:32, Philippians 2:3-4,1 Cor. 13:4-8, John 13:34, 1Peter 3:8, 1 John 3:18). Reminding them that God wants them to love each other well with great compassion and intention. So sharing Bible stories and giving little reminders to love each other like Jesus love us helps.
I pray that Duce and E’s sibling love continues to blossom, and they know without a shadow of a doubt that they will always be loved by one another, and can lean on one another in celebratory and challenging moments in their lives.
How are you encouraging sibling love with your children? Share in the comments! Let’s support mommas building healthy, authentic, beautiful bonds among their children.
~Soli deo Gloria💜
Copyright © 2021 by Da’Quisha Whitaker