Christmas is here again, so it’s time to start our shopping …
A gift for sharing, indeed!
When it comes to buying gifts for our twins, we’ve all had the experience (with toddlers and older) that when we give one item and encourage them to share, we hit the inevitable conflict. So, do we try to avoid the fighting and buy two items? Are the items different enough that they can be distinguished yet alike enough so each child knows that he or she is getting the same, equal treatment? For instance, we buy two Barbie dolls but two different styles of Barbie doll. Chances are, as it occurred with my twin girls, that one will still want the others doll, and trading doesn’t always solve the problem!
So, do we resort to buying two of the exact same items in order to demonstrate equal treatment, and also to avoid conflict?
Alike, but different
Disappointingly, this isn’t always the perfect remedy either because one twin will just grab both dolls
and run off with them, leaving the other screaming in protest and chasing her greedy twin!
When it comes down to it, we all want to assure our children that they are equally loved and equally treated. However, fairness and equality are not always attainable, and with further consideration, these treatments aren’t things we’ll always be able to count on in life, right?
So, it’s fair to say that we should probably teach our children, twins and singletons alike, that sometimes every effort will be made so he or she will feel fairly treated, BUT, also be aware that this is not always possible and not always appropriate.
Still, don’t we hate the fighting?! Don’t we greatly dislike the reactions our children give us after we’ve gone to such great lengths to please them all? My husband and I try to instill in each of our children that they are blessed to receive ANYTHING! They are NOT entitled to anything beyond our parental responsibilities to provide for their needs, so anything they receive for birthdays or Christmas or any such occasion is a gift that should be deserved … and ultimately appreciated. If gifts are fought over, fought for, not appreciated or shown any such reaction … goodbye gift!
Now that’s when the tears start … and earning the right to deserve said gift has to begin all over again!
Gift receiving is only half of the lesson. Each of my children, when they reached the age of five or so, were encouraged to participate in gift-giving
as well. They could create a little crayon drawing for the birthday person or for their siblings and grandparents for Christmas, for example. In doing this little task, they would then experience the pride of seeing the happiness on the faces of their gift’s recipient and share in a little taste in the pure joy of giving. They would then begin to remark about how it was (almost) better than the gifts they received … (almost).
So, let’s discuss the topic of gift giving …
What are your best and most creative solutions for giving gifts to your twins and your other children who may be singletons?
How are you teaching them what gift-giving and gift-receiving is really all about?