OLDER CHILDREN AS CAREGIVERS
Often I see client's who are angry with their children because the child does not want to help out with the other children or does not want to help with cooking or cleaning the house because the mother is at work or because the mother is tired or wants to go out, etc.
It generally takes several sessions before the client understands that he/she is angry with the child because the child, "has a life". We as parents make decisions, such as have another baby or changing jobs, or wanting to go out with adult friends or family. Sometimes we make our children, "PLAN B". Some consciously make this decision and others automatically assume that the oldest child will take the supportive role. When that child does not want to take part in our plans we become any, after all look what we have sacraficed for that child. WRONG.
One of the things we need to decide when we have that one child or any additional children is we have to keep our own children not expect our other children to help us take care of our other children. You had them You take care of them.
If the older child want to help you out that's one thing. I don't mean you make them feel guilty. I mean they really volunteer to keep the younger child or children and of course they are old enough to do so. I know at times you need a break but you can have that break by hiring the older child to watch the children while you remain at home perhaps in another room or in another part of the house.
DO NOT PUT YOUR OLDER CHILDREN IN THE POSITION OF CARRYING GUILT FOR THE REMAINDER OF THEIR LIVES IF SOMETHING SHOULD HAPPEN TO ONE OF HIS/HER SIBLINGS.
Just think about it. I believe if you would stop pushing the younger children off on your older children, your conflicts with the older children will stop and you will find all of your children with become more appreciative of each other.
LET'S TALK AGAIN ABOUT THIS SUBJECT.