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Things to Avoid in Adult Sibling Relationship

In life, if there is any relationship second to the relationship you have with yourself or God (if you are a believer), it is an adult sibling relationship. In healthy circumstances, a sibling will do everything to bail you out of your circumstances. Now, you’d also notice that there are stories of brothers and sisters who can’t stand each other, but only as a narrative from their spouse, thereof extended families, and children and it is almost always involving property issues. So, welcome back guys, let’s talk about things to avoid in adult sibling relationships.

I don’t know if you’ll be able to assess a lot of unspoken sentiment from this video, but if you do, you’ll know that everything I am going to talk about comes from a place of empathy. So, without further ado, let’s start with the concerns that my study of Psychology informs me to avoid.

No 1 is Never let parental issues spill over your adult sibling relationship. If parents don’t share a healthy relationship, they impact the interpersonal relationship of their children. If as a child you are dissatisfied or impacted by your parents, anything negative you experience with your sibling, you’ll assign that as a behavioural inheritance from the concerned parent. I am not saying that your sibling cannot be wrong. They can be as wrong as you are. But when either sibling is put in an existential mode as to why they were born to such parents to be always judged even by their closest blood-relative, it would be the worst trigger to end your sibling relationship.

No 2 is Never let your worldly knowledge overshadow your relationship. In life, we accumulate knowledge and experiences that shape our perspectives, right? However, it’s crucial to avoid imposing our beliefs and opinions on others, especially those closest to us, namely our siblings. It is possible that your parents could give one child little more than the other given whatever the reason, which makes one more intelligent and sharper than the other. Should it mean you would make the other feel that void, should you remind them with your knowledge how they were deprived of the same opportunity? If both received equal access to everything and yet you are the sharper one, would you impose on them how they are cognitively not as evolved as you? Also, we learn things from books, but who are the authors? Who is even Socrates or Aristotle to dictate the nuances of your relationship with your siblings?

No 3 is Never let your success break your sibling relationship. Achieving success in any aspect of life is commendable. However, it’s important to remember that success doesn’t stand by your bedside. So many influencers on the Internet today, how many do you think would sacrifice their lives to nurse a dying influencer? We pay so much to buy show tickets of successful people, but once they are sick, how many actually go and meet them? History books immortalise people to study strategy, consequences, and actions. Otherwise, they don’t help remember a person by their daily ups and downs. So, being successful is always in a context to what you set for your goals or your parents set for your goals, and for the derision of your neighbours and friends who never stole extra milk to fill your bottle to silence your hunger despite not being your birthgiver. So, think if you should let success break your sibling relationship.

No 4 is Never let your partner or children dictate your sibling relationship. While partners and children play important roles in our lives, they should not dictate our relationships with our siblings in any negative way possible. Sibling bonds are long-standing and carry deep emotional significance. Avoid sharing personal details or venting about your sibling with your partner or children. Foster positive interactions between your sibling and your partner or children. Never let external influences strain your sibling relationship. Partner can divorce you and you might get a second or a third or a fourth partner. Will you have everyone dictate or define your terms with your sibling? You might know how the poor village man who tried to please everyone, ended up losing the donkey he bought with all his wealth.

No 5 is Never discount the experiences that give your sibling a different personality. Our unique life experiences shape our personalities and perspectives. It’s important to appreciate and respect the experiences that have shaped your sibling into who they are today. Unless your sibling is criminally harmful, to reject them because of their unique personality traits is never helpful. You may have seen as much life as your sibling. If you gained horizontal or vertical exposure in life, so did your sibling. So, don’t make assumptions about your siblings based on their experiences, don’t question their efforts that explain their intent to put together a family including you and your parents. You can always ask for perspective but no matter how smart your sibling is, they won’t be themselves to the world with you and you’ll always remain in the dark about them.


Adult sibling relationship, in my opinion, is the only deserving relationship, of course again, if they are not criminally disposed to care for. They know you since your or their birth, they share the same blood, same general influences and experiences unlike your parents or friends, or partners, or even your children. Your brothers and sisters are the closest of anyone sharing your timeline on earth. Everything else is a consequence. When you hear stories of dysfunctional sibling relationships, I can bet it is because of dysfunctional families or families that never shared values that the brains in the sibling relationship could mimic or mimic successfully. I also bet that estranged sibling relationships are not because of money as much as because of the partners or children of siblings who most naturally are tied by intention of inheritance. Lemme know in the comments if I have left anything unclarified or if you have any questions

Linda Ashok

Linda Ashok is an India English Poet & Polymath. She is a mental health advocate studying Psychology from IGNOU'25.