How to Mend Sibling Relationships
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BetterTV's Rhiannon Ally talks to Jane Isay about sibling relationship and rivalry.


How to Mend Sibling Relationships Better Rhiannon: Bond between siblings maybe as thick as thieves but sometimes that relationship can’t stand the test of time Jane Isay author of Mom still like you Best is here to help siblings stop bickering and build a solid relationship for the future. Hello Jane. Jane: I’m so glad be here. Thank you. Rhiannon: It’s so nice to have you and it’s a great topic. I think a lot of people fight with their siblings and its’ one of those topics we don’t really want to talk about too much. Jane: That’s the reason I decided to write this book because when the subject of siblings comes up there’s silence. Now there are those who just love each other and they say my sister and I talk three times a day and we’re best friends. Nobody else talks about it so everybody thinks that they ought to be like those loving sisters or brothers and there’s a lot of ambivalence and there’s also a lot of feelings that go into the sibling relationship. Rhiannon: Now do you find this is mostly as adults or even as kids. Jane: Well first of all the nursery is the great place for fighting and hitting and fighting and screaming tears and hugs. That’s where we learn to deal with peers it’s save, it’s scary, we cry, we go to our parents, we form the bond but as adults sometimes we’re still acting like the children that we were in nursery. Rhiannon: Fighting over silly petty things. Jane: And remembering things you wouldn’t believe. Here’s everybody I interviewed when I traveled across the country. I interviewed nearly 100 brothers and sisters for this. Everybody had a story that typifies what their relationship is and I call it their just so story so if you still are feeling you don’t so you’re not so comfortable with this sibling you’ll tell a story about how mean they were when you were little. Rhiannon: You’re trying to justify why you don’t have a good relationship. Jane: That’s right and you tell yourself well how could, we be friends. He hit me when I was a kid. The answer is everybody hits. Rhiannon: So what should older siblings who don’t get along even if they have major problems that stem beyond he hit me as a kid what should they do? Jane: Well they have to decide what they want to do and that’s the decision everybody to make. Most people I found even if they’re separate it from there brothers and sisters it’s like phantom Limb something is still hurts because it’s family so the first thing we need to do is grow up those memories. if one of the things is fighting here’s an example the first time I interviewed somebody who said I did my sister, I went eh!! The 25th time and then what happened so first you have to understand something about the Universality of conflict of mix feelings that is the truth about your brothers and sisters so you say to yourself well I can’t stand the way she dresses. This is I don’t like her politics. Rhiannon: Or values or beliefs. Jane: Values or beliefs those are big separators and then you say and many people say how could we come from the same family. I say it’s because you came from the same family. Rhiannon: One of the issues I think in a lot of those relationships is that they think the parents have played favorites. Jane: Absolutely. Rhiannon: Do parents really play favorites or do the siblings just have a thought. Jane: Both, there are parents who choose favorites and that is not a good thing in my judgment everybody hates the favorite. Him one family I wrote about the oldest sister was why can’t you be like Isabel. Oh no but I like Isabel. Rhiannon: And if the parents don’t think they play favorites quickly what should you do? Jane: What you should do is if you’re a parent make sure the playing field is even and if you’re not a favorite understand that there’s a burden of being a favorite because you have to be perfect for the parents. Rhiannon: Thank you so much all great tips simply we can mend some of those relationships out there. For lots of other advice on how you can strengthen that bond with your brother or your sister you can pick up a copy of mom still like you best it’s available now. We’ll be right back.