I grew up with 2 brothers and 3 sisters . . . sharing and fairness were kind of a big deal. While the rules were constantly evolving (some of us being old enough to know better, some being to young to understand) there are two rules that I remember, and find myself saying/using to keep the peace with my own children today.
Rule #1: If You Don’t Want To Share It – Don’t Show It
This is one rule I regularly remind my kids of before we have friends over to play – if there is a special toy that they aren’t ready to share, we hide it away until after the play date (which has saved us from many a meltdown or scuffle).
At times, I’m not quite sure that my kids understand this rule in regards to sharing (or not sharing) with each other . . . and then I come across something like this (“Exhibit A”) below:
Even if you aren’t familiar with field hockey, you probably knew that field hockey sticks are generally NOT stored in the fridge. I got a good chuckle out of this when I recalled earlier events of the day where my son and daughter were fighting over this particular stick, and that one of them was smart enough to hide it in a place where the other wouldn’t expect to find it.
Rule #2: One Splits – The Other Picks
When there is something my children both want that can be divided (usually a food item) – we live by this rule. I can remember taking a good 10 minutes (OK, maybe I’m exaggerating a little) to cut a piece of cake in half that I had to share with one of my siblings. I was determined to make sure the pieces were exactly even, because I wasn’t the one who would get to pick.
What are are your “house rules” of sharing?