Dear American Girl,
My little brother follows me everywhere and will not give me space. When my friends are over, he barges into my room and interrupts us or takes my things. When I tell my parents, they don’t seem to care. What should I do?
Here's your advice:
Younger siblings sometimes do this because they want attention. You could set up a time to hang out with your brother and explain that you need space when you have a friend over.
-Chloe, age 12, Ohio
I think that you should talk to your brother about how you’re feeling. If he doesn’t understand, write your parents a letter. Explain that you need space.
-Aroosha, age 10, New Jersey
Come up with a new plan. Will your parents allow you and your brother to have a friend over at the same time? This might solve the problem! He will be playing with his friend, and you’ll be with yours.
-Lauren, age 9, Iowa
Your brother might be acting this way because he wants to spend time with you. Explain that when you have a friend over, you need space. Once your friend leaves, make sure to play with your brother. Ask if he wants to play a game or watch a movie with you.
-Erin, age 12, Maine
Your brother probably looks up to you. He most likely thinks that you’re really cool and so are your friends and toys. Try to be nice to him even though you’re frustrated.
-Margarite, age 12, France
I share a room with my little brother, and he acts the same way when I have friends over. My parents and I came up with some rules so we can each have our own space. When my brother follows the rules, he gets a sticker on his chart. Maybe you can talk to your parents about trying something like this.
-Naomi, age 11, New Jersey
Make a plan with your brother. Say that you’ll ride bikes with him if he leaves you and your friend alone. Make sure that you keep your promise.
-Annabelle, age 11, Florida
You could have a family meeting and invite your parents and brother to come. Explain how you’re feeling and that you need space when a friend is over. If you are very clear about how you feel, they might listen.
-Elizabeth, age 11, California
You could let him tag along. I have a small brother, and he follows me everywhere. Sometimes I get annoyed, but then I remember that I’m his role model.
-Lizzy, age 12, Illinois
My sister used to follow me all the time. I talked to her about how I liked spending time with her but also wanted to spend time with my friends. She understood and gave us some space.
-Christine, age 11, New York
Set up a time to talk to your parents about this. Try to come up with a fair solution. You could even include your brother in the conversation.
-Emma, age 13, Michigan
I have two little brothers who act like this. My brothers tend to keep bothering me if I get mad and frustrated with them. If I ignore them and politely ask them to give me space, they usually listen. If they don’t listen after a while, I call my mom into my room and explain the situation.
-Jessica, age 12, Oregon
Your brother is probably doing this because he wants to hang out with you. Allow him to read one of your books or play one of your favorite games when you have a friend over. Once your friend leaves, you could play a game together.
-Kendel, age 11, California