How do your kids annoy each other?

Walsh has a new favorite trick that Rose is absolutely hating. He likes to sneak up on her, or sometimes he even lies in wait inside her darkened closet, and then he bursts out yelling “French Indochina.”

The sneak attack is an old gag but what cracks me up about it is the use of the phrase “French Indochina.” I think he got it on Brain Pop watching videos about the Vietnam War. Somehow it has become his attack mantra.

Rose screams as she is startled by him and gets very upset. But she can be equally aggravating to her siblings as well – although less creatively.

She has other little catch phrases like “Wee Wee,” “Honk!,” “Walsh es Tonto”(which she says means stupid in Spanish but I don’t think so).

My brother and I used to pull the jobs together and jump out at babysitters. I remember hiding on top of the refrigerator and a new sitter sitting down at the kitchen table and me scaring the heck out of her. I also recall leaving a lizard in the Mathis milk box to scare the poor milkman.

A friend of ours out here says that his adult brother’s favorite gag is to turn on his seat heater in the car without him knowing it. It will be like 110 degrees and he feels hotter and hotter and doesn’t figure out his brother turned on his seat. The brother thinks it’s hysterical! (Now Michael and I are both paranoid that the other one is doing it.)

What little gags do you kids do to annoy each other? Do you have any gags that you pull with your adult siblings?

51 comments Add your comment

fred

December 1st, 2011
12:32 pm

when I was younger, I would always shower right before my sister did. My favorite trick was, as I was getting out of the shower I would turn the water all of the way to cold, let it run for a minute, turn it off and then aim the nozzle at where my sister would be standing when she turned the water on. Worked well for a few times, until my sister “let” my mom shower right after me and the cold water hit her in the face. Luckily my girls have not gotten creative yet in annoying each other. But they seem to be able to do the trick just by breathing.

A

December 1st, 2011
12:49 pm

One reason I’m glad to have an only child. We don’t have to worry about this.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

December 1st, 2011
12:53 pm

fred that is vicious!

A – there is a lot of yelling going on here — much louder than just one. Some days it makes you crazy!

motherjanegoose

December 1st, 2011
1:33 pm

When we were younger, my Mom forbid us to say “shut up” in front of our youngest sister ( she is 13 years younger than me and 10 from my sister). I took French in HS and taught my middle sister who then took it too. We went to “ferme la bouche ” when Mom was not around. My Mom did not know French. Our little sister would mumble it, in variations, near our Mom and finally we were asked what in the world that meant. Not a good day for either of us.

I will say that my two were not close growing up and picked on each other quite often. We have been to Hawaii 3 times and the last time we went, they were 16 and 21. It was AMAZING to see the difference of how they enjoyed each other’s company and there was no fussing on the trip as they had simply grown up. It was so much easier!

Having siblings ( to me) teaches you how to navigate your way with other people. There are lots of people who can be really nice some days and really difficult on others. Growing up with two sisters gave me a bit of a preview. I enjoy different aspects of each of my sisters and enjoy different aspects of my son and daughter as well. It is interesting ( to me) to see the things they have picked up from my husband or myself. I am glad I had two and also a boy and a girl…that may be just me.

motherjanegoose

December 1st, 2011
1:35 pm

TWG…my son gladly loaned his sister a pair of school scissors, when she was three. She cut her hair off and the hair of many of her Barbies and my original Skipper in the red striped swim suit…:(.

oneofeach4me

December 1st, 2011
1:42 pm

Well… my two haven’t gotten creative with it yet. Right now they are just blatant with the picking or play dumb like they aren’t picking. Like my daughter will eat candy in front of my son’s face, he will ask for some, she will say no, he says why, she says… because I am older and I said so and it’s mine. Well… then she will ask him for something and he says NOPE. With no explanation.

I know I am gonna probably get flack for this… but it’s kinda funny.. I swear my son pees a little on the seat of the bathroom they share just to piss off his sister…… lol

MatthewH

December 1st, 2011
1:54 pm

Ahhh, Mathis Milk. Haven’t thought of that in years. I used to love seeing the truck pull up our driveway and deposit the bottles in that old metal box. And this time of year there would be a bottle of egg nog as well.

I grew up in a family of 6 children, so we did just about everything to each other. Luckily, my children (3 and 1) still like each other and I’m hoping that closeness continues (I know it won’t).

And to the poster “A” I would say, I’m glad I have more than one child! It would be too boring around here!

A

December 1st, 2011
2:16 pm

Our house is hardly boring, but obviously # of kids is a personal choice. One was our choice and we have never regretted it. There are pros and cons of having one kid or more, but one of the “pros” for us is no fighting/annoying and having a peaceful home environment.

Burnt Weenie Sandwich

December 1st, 2011
2:19 pm

Really? Leaving a lizard for the milk man?

Lame.

mom2alex&max

December 1st, 2011
2:22 pm

FYI Theresa, “Walsh es tonto” does mean “Walsh is stupid” in Spanish.

Anj

December 1st, 2011
2:29 pm

Heh.

The older kid has a habit of “MOOOOOOOOM, AutismKid is doing ______!”. (Usually hit, kick, spit at him, although toys have been thrown on occasion.)

The trick is that the older will deliberately provoke AutismKid, then when AK reacts badly, the older will ask for MY help. I caught on fast, and the only thing he gets from me now is In Trouble.

Or…I will suggest some nice quiet time well away from his brother. “Why don’t you bring a book into the kitchen and read?”. This never seems to be what he wants to do – which is mess his brother about and escape the consequences.

It is entertaining to see how many ways they will try to fool me. Alas for the older, AutismKid is currently winning the competition for being subtle and sneaky.

Lil Timmy

December 1st, 2011
2:47 pm

WHen I really want 2 upset my sister I read this blog a loud. It make her real mad.

MatthewH

December 1st, 2011
2:48 pm

To “A”:
I certainly wasn’t questioning/attacking your choice to have only one child. I hope you didn’t interpret my comments that way.

A

December 1st, 2011
3:31 pm

No offense taken at all @MatthewH. Just saying that even with just the one kid, I wouldn’t say things are boring around here, but then I have nothing else to compare it to. When he has a friend over, things change a lot, and I’m sure it would be like that if he had a sibling. But I have to say we are happy with how things are.

Stacey

December 1st, 2011
4:12 pm

My sister would sit and stare at me. If I turned my back to her, she would simply move across the room and continue. When I would tell, my mother would just say that I wouldn’t know that she was staring at me unless I was also staring at her. Once we were adults, my sister admitted that the first time it happened she was simply daydreaming and was coincidentally facing me but loved the fact that I got so upset. She finally had something to get under my skin because I had to be the most annoying kid sister ever born. :-D

Uncle Larry

December 1st, 2011
4:24 pm

My sister would hold me down and fart in my face.

JOD

December 1st, 2011
4:40 pm

These are too funny. I was an only child, so I don’t have any basis for comparison. I can only hope DD will end up with a younger sibling; I think she would be really sweet but also a hilarious older sister.

Valstake

December 1st, 2011
5:54 pm

My brother (7 years older than me) would annoy/tease me frequently enough when I was little. I had never heard the saying “the best defense is a good offense,” but I’d usually grab a butter knife and run after him hollering “I’m gonna kill you!” He’d lock himself in the bathroom and mother would disarm me and tell me to go read a book or play outside. Once he reached high school, he was mature enough to stop teasing me, but I was still glad when he went off to college.

Sk8ing Momma

December 1st, 2011
11:03 pm

Ugh!!! Can I count the ways?! As an only child, can I just say that I HATE the fact that my kids annoy one another. It.sends.me.over.the.edge. My tolerance for it is *extremely* low ~ Grrr!! Can’t we just all get along?!

Fred

December 1st, 2011
11:14 pm

I only have one child. It saddens me sometimes, but sometimes I wonder how I could love another like I do this one. but not very often. I never understood the way you love your child until I had one so I’m sure I could love another one just as much. Kids are great. I would welcome the “annoyance.” But things just didn’t work out that way.

I wonder what that child my girl friend aborted almost 30 years ago would have been like. Wish I would have had a say so in that one…………..

DB

December 2nd, 2011
12:11 am

@A: Peace is lovely. But there’s a lot to be said for chaos, too. When both of my kids were in college, I really missed the chaos of people zipping in and out, always with a few friends along for the ride, sleeping on the couch, etc., etc. Some weekends, I’d have no idea who’d be at breakfast! Now, my favorite weekends are when everyone is in town. Heaven!

DB

December 2nd, 2011
12:13 am

@Fred: You love each one differently, but just as fiercely — because each one is different.

Anj

December 2nd, 2011
7:50 am

“Sk8ing Momma

Ugh!!! Can I count the ways?! As an only child, can I just say that I HATE the fact that my kids annoy one another. It.sends.me.over.the.edge. My tolerance for it is *extremely* low ~ Grrr!! Can’t we just all get along?”

This is called a Learning Experience. Siblings are all about co-existing with people we didn’t choose to share our lives with. (I blame the parents…;) The main parental responsibility is to keep things from escalating dangerously. Children will eventually learn how to deal with their differences constructively, if their parents encourage/model that behavior and most importantly, remain impassive to the Drama.

If your children love to drag you into their squabbles, try: “I can see you are upset about this. Let’s sit down and talk about it.”. If they seem cool to that idea, it’s likely because they don’t want a Solution, they want an Ally. IOW – they don’t want to “get along”, they want to keep fighting AND they want YOU to fight too.

(BTW – this doesn’t apply only to children.)

catlady

December 2nd, 2011
8:17 am

My kids didn’t do this. Really. Maybe it was the spacing–4 and 5 years. Sometimes they would annoy each other, but it wasn’t planned.

I was an only child. It woud have killed me if my kids had not been close.

Ally

December 2nd, 2011
8:46 am

There isn’t a lot of practical jokes in my house. I wouldn’t mind the ones that are harmless, but my sister and I did not play well together (and still don’t) so I insist that my two girls at least treat each other with kindness and respect. They can disagree, argue or tease as long as they do it kindly and respectfully. If it wouldn’t be okay for someone to do or say something that they want to do, then don’t do it to your sister. I tell them that they can do whatever to their friends (mostly because their friends are capable of handling it but also because some of their friends treat them the same way), but they need to treat family nicely.

@Sk8ing Momma & Anj
As I said above, insist that your kids treat each other respectfully and kindly. My sister and I do not get along to this day because she was and still is so nasty to me (and our mom, which is a different story). I think it was destined that I have two girls so that I could try to have two sisters in my family who actually get along.

I totally disagree with the whole “oh, just let them work it out” bs because the playing field is not level. Would you let your older child “work it out” with a younger stranger?? I doubt it. Since we are all “stuck” with our family for the rest of our lives, we should be kind and respectful with our family and maybe we won’t dislike each other so much as we get older.

homeschooler

December 2nd, 2011
8:49 am

@ catlady..I don’t know if you meant for that comment to sound like kids who squabble are not close but I can assure you that is not the case. My kids drive each other crazy daily. My son gets too rough, my daughter gets her feelings hurt. She screams when he scares her (which drives me crazy), she copies everything he says, he copies everything she says on and on and on… But they are so incredibly close, they would be lost without eachother. They play together for hours on end. The annoying things they do to eachother are just part of their closeness. Kind of like a married couple. My husband only had a brother and I only had a sister so this brother/sister relationship is new to both of us. I think all the time that both of them are gettig great experience at how to live with a future spouse.
My husband always remembers turning the water on very hot just before his brother would wash his hands. He would turn the faucet to cold before his brother came in and his brother would get burned every time. nice.

crystal

December 2nd, 2011
8:52 am

My kids are five years apart. As they got older, when the teasing and squabbles began, we had a great many talks about how to get along and teamwork. I tried to do creative timeouts where they had to strike bargains to get out of timeout. Both were held accountable. They were constantly reminded that they were good people just trying to get along. I also told about my own issues with getting along with others and made sure I was never a hypocrite. It worked. The squabble thing lasted only part of one summer. I didn’t want to replicate how I was parented. I have great kids that do not fight and take incredible care of each other.

itpdude

December 2nd, 2011
8:54 am

I don’t recall my sister purposefully doing anything to annoy me. I simply didn’t like her. She probably says the same about me, though I was mean to her because I simply didn’t like her.

jarvis

December 2nd, 2011
9:03 am

My daughter “mother’s” the hell out of my son.

Me: “How many parents does your brother have?”
Daughter: “Well, two. But you guys aren’t always here to tell him what he’s doing wrong.”

JOD

December 2nd, 2011
9:03 am

@Fred – That is so sad; hope you have some peace.

@Anj – When I got to the end of your 7:50 post I laughed as that’s exactly what I was thinking as I read it :o)

As I said, I don’t have any siblings, but while we were dating, Hubs used to scare the bejeezus out of me and go crazy laughing. It wasn’t even safe to go to the bathroom for a while! If only he had said ‘French Indochina’…

Sue

December 2nd, 2011
9:16 am

My mother raised 12 kids, 7 boys and 5 girls, and we weren’t allowed to bicker and fight. My mother did not allow it. Also, she didn’t allow whining and crying. We played outside a lot.

Warrior Woman

December 2nd, 2011
9:41 am

I used to microwave or wet marshmallow peeps and put them on the toilet seat of the bathroom my sisters shared. They tended to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night without turning on the lights. You should have heard the screams when they sat on slimy peeps!!!

Anj

December 2nd, 2011
9:42 am

@ jarvis

Yes, the older “plays mommy” too. I remind him that if he wants to Play Mommy, that I do a great many other things besides monitor behavior. I tell him the next time he Plays Mommy, he will be cleaning toilets.

It is doubly annoying when I tell AutismKid to do something and the elder child IMMEDIATELY parrots me. Not. Helpful.

(Also reminds me to phrase things in a positive and constructive fashion…)

Mom of 4

December 2nd, 2011
10:06 am

I am blessed to have 4 boys (21, 13, 10, 7) who LIVE to drive one another crazy. As an only child I simply don’t understand the concept of annoying someone for entertainment although my mother who was one of 12 had it down to an art form. Unless they are genuinely going to hurt one another I try to stay out of it, but many days my sanity just won’t take it anymore and I just want them to get along. They’re great kids, but I’m always telling people, with boys its very loud, very violent and requires a lot of food. But at the end of the day if they’re still alive and sleeping peacefully, I must have done my job!

usually lurking

December 2nd, 2011
11:29 am

Ah, my all time favorite is the “stop copying me”.

jarvis

December 2nd, 2011
12:16 pm

@lurking, or as my 4-year-old says “stop coffeeing me”.

mystery poster

December 2nd, 2011
12:41 pm

Re: Stop copying me!
Every time my daughter would say “MOM, HE’S COPYING ME!” (yes, caps because she yelled it), I would counter with “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”

Reg Dunlop

December 2nd, 2011
1:30 pm

WE need a new blog entry. My life is too exciting and sensible. Please…..Help dumb us down with another inane blog!

LM

December 2nd, 2011
1:34 pm

My brother and I about killed each other growing up. He was older by 3 years, but had several accidents prior to my birth so he had some regression. I came out of my mom ready for a fight. I was about eight before he hit me, and I called my mom looking for support. She told me I deserved it, and during all of our childhood when we got into a fight she’d say “you deserve each other”. By the time I was 15, we started working with each other at Taco Bell, we’d pick on each other, but by then we were friends.

He was much more the funny one and pick on me, but I was much more serious and physical and would beat him up. However, no one could get into a fight with my brother, I’d beat them up and then go after him for making me beat up someone else. I am much nicer now :)

JoDee

December 2nd, 2011
7:41 pm

Three older brothers ( I’m the baby sister) terrorized me in myriad ways when I was growing up. I can’t even tell you all of the awful things they collectively thought of to scare, annoy, berate, and abuse me. The worst was when my oldest brother was left to babysit us. He would blindfold my other brothers and me and make us eat random things…..like ketchup on Rice Krispies… I couldn’t refuse because they would pin me down and tickle me until I couldn’t breathe. Abuse, I tell you!

I have an only child, and our home was quiet when he still lived at home. Still, as a teacher, I can tell which kids have siblings and which don’t. Kids with sibs learn conflict resolution daily…..from little conflicts to big ones…..and I wish my son had had the opportunity to have that with sibs. Sadly, God only gave us one.

Fred

December 2nd, 2011
11:28 pm

JOD

December 2nd, 2011
9:03 am

@Fred – That is so sad; hope you have some peace.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Thank you. I can’t say that I have. I think I’m happy about that, but it is what it is. I’ve learned to live with it. What else can I do? Sorry to bum out an otherwise happy thread though. my apologies to the rest of you. I was just a tad bit reflective there.

I wanted many children but it just didn’t work out that way. I’m grateful for what I have though and happy for those of you who have more. My past belongs better in the past wouldn’t you say? As does everyone else’s. We can’t replay or change our past, we can learn for it and hope to do better in the present and the future while loving what we have. But in the end, it is what it is.

Just damn, I need to get off this reflective streak.

Fred

December 2nd, 2011
11:29 pm

Learn FROM it. Sorry for the typo

Lynnette

December 2nd, 2011
11:37 pm

Well… then what did you think, “Walsh es tonto” means?

K's mom

December 3rd, 2011
9:33 am

@Fred, I am pregnant with my second and I have recently had thoughts about how will I love another as much as my first. Glad someone verbalized those thoughts well…I just know it will work out.

I am sorry that your wish for many kids was not fulfilled. Volunteer with your family with kids. We have friends with an only (not by choice) and that has filled in the void for them!

tracey

December 3rd, 2011
7:47 pm

my brother and i fought a lot. he was mean, and loved to make me mad. because when i get angry, i get loud and yell and throw stuff. that meant i was the one who ended up in trouble. he thought it was terribly entertaining. he got to be mean to me and i got in trouble. a two for one special. must be why we don’t talk hardly at all now. my kids argue, but at the end of the day they love each other. they are 16 and 13, and will hug each other every now and then.

Sk8ing Momma

December 3rd, 2011
11:00 pm

@ Anj ~

I beg to differ. :) I think of it being polite and treating others how one wants to be treated….THAT’S the behavior that I exhibit and model. IMO, there’s no reason to intentionally annoy someone else.

In any event, I *rarely* intervene when my children are annoying one another and/or bickering (I have low tolerance for that, too). My most common refrain is, “Handle it!” I want them to learn how to work things out and solve problems on their own.

Jean

December 3rd, 2011
11:54 pm

My son loves to hide in the laundry basket… then when his sister walks by he jumps out and yells “BOO”… She screams and promptly hits him. She gets in trouble for hitting her younger brother… He gets in trouble for making her scream… Meanwhile dh and I are trying not to laugh.

Another time, big sister was sitting on the bottom of a shopping cart, younger brother walks up, turns around and farts in big sister’s face and runs. Immediate screams and a chase about to begin. DH and I are trying very hard not to laugh as we stop big sister from chasing after her brother. We then made younger brother apologize and told him that farting in his sister’s face was not polite and to not do that again.

They have also learned not to involve me in their fights, I won’t take sides. They both get in trouble and if they are fighting over something, it is taken away and put up. For example, if they are fighting about what game to play on the xbox, they get sent to their rooms and they are not allowed to play any video games for a specified length of time.

My 2 are the best of friends and the worst of enemies… And I wouldn’t have it any other way…

jsmom

December 4th, 2011
9:38 am

TWG, the heated seat thing is hilarious, as long as the “victim” doesn’t know you have heated seats. I did it to my brother when I was ~25. It still makes me laugh, and he still checks my car… and it’s been ~10 years. I love my brothers dearly, and the “harassment” goes both ways, and when we do see each other it’s ALWAYS fun and full of laughter.

motherjanegoose

December 4th, 2011
3:48 pm

@ K’s Mom…you will love both of your kids and hopefully enjoy them in different ways. We have a boy and then a girl and have been lucky to each have had one on one time with each of them. Being a parent is the hardest thing to do sometimes, but in the end, it can be the most rewarding too! I miss mine when they are gone but after they are home for a while and leave, it is nice to have the quiet again.

jan

December 4th, 2011
9:43 pm

Oh, so many ways to annoy the siblings… I put several hundred grasshoppers under her bed covers. We shared a room with our much younger sister, so we had to go to bed without turning on the light so we wouldn’t wake the little one up. The screaming sure did though… She is still phobic of insects…

Washed my new red clothing with my younger brother’s underwear, so it all got stained pink. Only reason no one pick on him when he changed out for gym was that he was so much bigger than them. Did this one repeatedly. Got in trouble for it repeatedly too…

Taught the younger sister how to lisp. Took 3 years of speech therapy to fix that one. My bad…

We are all in our 40s and 50s now, but we still go out of our way to annoy each other. Just our little way of keeping our childhoods alive.

My kids annoy each other by just existing on the same planet and breathing the same air. The fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree…