Hello!

My 11 year old son constantly bullies, stirs and frequently hurts my 3 1/2 year old son causing him to scream, cry or even worse copy and do it to my 10 month old daughter!! It drives me insane… Will he grow out of it? I’m tired of banging my head against a brick wall!


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  • Can you reason with him? Does he stop when you ask? Does he meltdown? Do you have any other concerns? If is typical sibling behaviour logical consequences are a good deterrent for bullying behaviour, however sometimes this type of behaviour can be related to something else that might be going on. Has he suffered frequent ear infections? If so this can cause significant behavioural issues and it might be worth having his hearing checked.
    Otherwise if you have other concerns it is worth discussing with your GP and getting a referral to a Paed.


  • I come from a family of 5 girls and there was a stage my sisters continuously teased and pestered me and I really struggled. My mum saw that and introduced the rule that every time it happened they had to pay a little fine of their pocket money. Personally I separate my kids when it gets to bad, each to be in a different area. Since your kids are younger you can’t encourage them yet to ignore and walk away but when they are older you sure can do that. Besides that I would have a serious chat with your 11 year old boy about the effect of his behaviour on his siblings and family in general. You could consider to set up a reward system with him.


  • This is just what kids do, nothing bad about it long term, I’m sure he will grow out of it


  • I think bullying and teasing and tormenting is par for the course with siblings in families. It may just be a passing phase. But if it’s getting really serious or you’ve just reached the end of your tether, maybe a visit to your GP or local medical centre for some advice and assistance


  • I would seriously sit down and talk to him about this as he may start doing this out school. Maybe he is bored or gets a kick out of seeing someone in pain . Tell him it is unacceptable and put some ground rules of what will happen if it continues . It can get out of control if he is not stopped now . Good luck .


  • Pretty sure he’ll grow out of it, nearly completely. My kids are 21 and 24 and the elder one still stirs the younger one, just not as much


  • Boys! He will grow out of it but in the meantime hugs!!


  • Because he can!!! He is sorting our his pecking order in the pack, and is making sure that he is the head of the pack, be firm with him and let him know that his behaviour is not acceptable and that there will be consequences if it continues, and that he is to be an example to his brother and he is to improve, if no improvement, speak to the school, most have counsellors who may be able to give you hints on how to stop this behaviour, also he may be doing it to other kids outside the home that you are not aware of, they can be sneaky and the school may not be aware of it. Horrid dobbing in your kid, but sometimes it may be needed.


  • Yes i have been trying to spend one on one time with him but it is very hard with my husband working away for half of the year! We are in a different situation and it is challenging all round! Thank you for your advice, i’m hoping things settle down soon :-)


  • Hi. Sounds like you’ve got your hands full! Can I suggest something that might sound a little unrelated to the problem? Try spending some one-on-one time with him at least once a day, preferably for 5-10 minutes. This can be reading, or chatting, or doing whatever she wants to do. This might sound a little left of field, but I’ve found it brings about a huge change in behaviour. It brought my daughter and I much closer together, which she loved, and because we were closer she tried harder to please me. She just became easier to live with in all sorts of ways. I really recommend you give it shot. Good luck!


  • Yes we do the time out thing and take items like iPads off the older son but it is driving me nuts!! It’s a big jealousy thing which is sad as i love my kids equally!! Thanks for your post!


  • Sad when kids pick on each other ,we have same problem,so been separating ,them try time out that’s what we been doing ,seems older get jealous of younger kids .Even if treat all equal


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