By Go-To Mom Jessica, Round Mtn, NV

When my middle children were 3 and 4 years old, they used to fight a lot. Having grown up with siblings who are at least 8 years younger than myself, I know how important those sibling bonds can be. I wanted my children to recognize that when all else fails, all we have is our family.

One day my son and my daughter were fighting again. They weren’t hitting each other. Instead it was that never-ending “picking” at each other that just wouldn’t stop. I tried to redirect their attention elsewhere a couple of times, but that day those tactics just didn’t work.

My husband came up with an idea. He didn’t tell me what it was, but he went into the play room and told them to come out. Our oldest son, who was almost 6, watched as they somberly came out and went into the living room. They knew they were in trouble!

My husband had the kids sit on the couch. He talked to them about how families shouldn’t treat each other that way, that you wouldn’t treat your friends like that. Then he said their punishment was that they had to go out in the yard and hold hands until 5 cars came past. (We lived in a rural area, so this could take awhile and they would be perfectly safe standing far back from the road.)

He also said that each time a car passed they had to hug and say they were sorry and that they loved each other. They weren’t allowed to say anything else to each other and they weren’t allowed to let go of each other’s hand.

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