Let Them Fight
We're a fighting family, but not a yelling family. Some people feel that "fighting" is too harsh of a word, so we cloak it in more agreeable terms such as "having a discussion" or "a disagreement". It's all fighting, and that's OK. You use whatever word you want, m'kay?
To instruct children not to fight is to teach rules over relationships. All we're accomplishing is controlled behavior in a controlled environment. Eventually our children will fight, despite our best efforts to the contrary. Let's provide a safe place for our children to learn how to lovingly duke it out, shall we? After all, we don't want to be the referee in their adult "discussions".
Rules to Fighting:
1. Same with getting angry, you do not need an audience. Take it outside, in the garage or in your room.
2. Kind words, kind voice. This means you cannot smile sweetly to the other party and say, "I hate your face." nor can you holler at the back of their head, "I'M SORRY!!*"
3. Avoid always/never statements. They're lame and untrue. Always.
4. End with prayer. We confess and seek forgiveness from the offended party and from God and ask for His help to love one another.**
Optional Conclusion: Have them sit with their noses touching until they can't help but crack up. ***
Note: If they're going to come to blows, it might be a good idea to step in. Blood is so tricky to clean out of carpet.
On That Note,
P.S. Here are a couple of photo outtakes for your enjoyment:
*Each syllable should be punctuated by angry jabs into the air. Extra points for actual steam coming out of ears.
**Eavesdroppers are encouraged to pray for their siblings in another room. We don't need any more rings in the circus.
***This is not advised during cold season...or if you have a headbutter.