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Information » People in Your Life » Being part of a Family » Brothers and Sisters

Brothers and Sisters

Many sisters and brothers don't get on when growing up and arguments are a natural part of your relationship with them.

Sometimes you have to share a room with them as well as living in the same house which can mean that you don't have your own private space. It can be hard having to share things with them or have them invade your privacy but there are ways to improve the situation.

  • Think about why you fight with each other (and be honest) - is it because you want your own space? You're not getting as much attention as them? Are you jealous?
  • If the problem is with you, then you need to resolve it yourself. Taking it out on your brother or sister won't help anyone
  • When you feel calm, try talking to your brother or sister about how you feel and ask them to tell you how they feel too. Don't shout at each other but try to have a controlled conversation, taking on board their opinions and criticisms maturely
  • Learning what triggers arguments can also help prevent them starting altogether so discuss it together and come up with ways of avoiding them
  • Next time you feel angry and you can feel an argument starting, take a deep breath and don't lash out. Leave the room, relax and confront the issue calmly when you feel ready
  • Brothers and sisters have different roles in a family. For example, the eldest may be given more responsibilities and asked to set an example for their younger brothers or sisters. The youngest child may be given more freedom but can sometimes feel over-protected and treated like a baby. However you feel, speak to your parents
  • If you feel your brother or sister gets more attention than you, this is something you need to talk to your parents or carers about. Tell them how and why you feel like this and look for ways to improve the situation like arranging a trip with your parents or carers
  • If you feel your brother or sister is better than you at something, remember what you're good at. For example, they may be better at sports than you, but you may get higher marks at school. No-one is perfect and everyone is different and has different interests and abilities, so don't compare yourself to your brother or sister. They are not you
  • You don't have to be best friends with your brother or sister, but it is important to show respect for each other. If you show respect for your siblings, they will learn to show the same respect to you
  • Often brothers and sisters, who argue when they are younger grow up to be very close. Remember your brother or sister will always be there for you so talk to and support each other

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