Backseat fighting!

This is quite specific but I know I’ll get some great advice from you all as you’ve already been so supportive when I’ve brought my challenges on here!!

So the Easter holidays are coming up and we have a long drive to Devon ahead if us. The fighting in the back seat between my 3 children (5 year old twins and an 8 year old) drives me absolutely mad. I find it so hard to stay calm in such a confined space and end up screaming. It’s car trips specifically that are our sticking point!! Does anyone have any tips I might not have thought of yet?!

I hear you!! Am not sure this is recommended advice but the only thing that stops my two bickering on long journeys is having them use their devices with headphones. That way, they can’t really hear each other and can do their own thing. This maybe conflicts with screen time advice that I’ve read on the website though?! I kind of think it’s ok as it’s a one off for long journeys. Good luck with your journey, hope it’s not as bad as you anticipate!!

Thanks @sunshine84. It kind of worked but they didn’t want the devices the whole journey and the minute they weren’t watching anything, they started on at each other again and I ended up screaming at them to stop :woman_facepalming:t3: Dreading the journey back…

Long journeys are a tricky one. Over time, when they are not on screens with headphones, it is good to train them up to ignore the jibes of the others. This means practising it beforehand with you role-playing one of the other children saying whatever nasty things they do to irritate the others and getting them to ignore by looking away and thinking thoughts about how stupid their sibling is, and how they’re not going to fall for that cheap shot of winding them up. Then on the journey you can give them points each time they ignore something, with a very clear reward (even a small amount of money, for example 10p for 10 points!) for each time they ignore a jive from the others. Choosing other non-monetary rewards that they really care about will be good, extra time on screens, going to bed later or whatever works for them. If it can be graded so they get a certain amount for 5 points, a certain amount for 10 points et cetera that can all help.

Finally, playing a game where they play together can work, for example I Spy, obviously it has to be things that will still be there as you speed down the motorway, for example motorway signs, trees, grass, et cetera. Or it can be the 1st to see a green car and so on.


Thank you so much for your reply @Prof_Stephen_Scott, some great ideas for me to try out next time :raised_hands:

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That’s interesting to read your advice @Prof_Stephen_Scott. thank you. I hadn’t thought of rewarding positive behaviour in the car before (it kind of sounds obvious now!). I have lost my temper so many times in the car @LondonParent. We haven’t had a long journey this Easter thank goodness.

With games, we do find I-spy more fun than I expected too. We try to do harder and harder things :joy:. The other game we do is to each chose a supermarket lorry on motorway journeys and every time the person sees their lorry they get a point. And we’ve tried audio books too :+1:


Thanks @Mumof2. I have no idea how I spy didn’t occur to me before now……my mum always got us to play it in the car!!