Do any of you dislike your adult sibling(s)? - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-11-2007, 02:43 PM - Thread Starter
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I am going to have to see my older brother for a week over the holidays and I am dreading it.

He was probably a bit rougher on me than most older siblings are to their younger ones; I think that he was acting out because he was probably picked on in school. My friends did comment on this when I was approx 8-12. Granted, there were times that I was obnoxious mself...

Another problem: When he turned 21 (and still living at home) he decided that it would be funny to belch as loudly as possible when at the dinner table, and approx 20 years later, I don't think that he completely grew out of it (fortunately, he didn't last time I saw him last summer).

His wife is a b*$@h for many reasons. Although my brother frequently said that her religion is false and hates it, he married her anyhow, and the clergyperson was of that faith. She also raised the children in that faith, which rankles me. My brother was too weak at first to prevent it (he should have walked a long time ago), and I don't think that he cares now.

There is no real warmth between us. Real conversations between us are rare. The few times that everyone is together, he likes to mention things that annoy me or embarrassing moments from my past.

I must admit that I have done some things that weren't nice in the past but I tried to grow past it. We did have some good times as kids/teenagers. He has never been in trouble with the law and never sexually abused me.

I thought that siblings were supposed to fight like cats and dogs when they were younger and become friends when they were adults.

I am dreading seeing him, and to be honest, I don't think that I would ever care to see him again.

I hope that I don't sound like I am whining or anything like that. What should I do? Do any of you have a relationship like this with your siblings now that you are adults?
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Old 12-11-2007, 05:04 PM
 
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YES, I have sibs I can't stand never could. A brother who died almost a year ago at 51. he had schizophrenia diagnosed at 21 but before that he was abusive and mean, could also be nice but even though I am a SW by profession, I couldn't be with him after he was so ill because of previous violence. However I was still happy to learn that as sick as he was he gave of himself to baby sisters young kids and to oldest sisters old kids. 2, sister 3 years older than I, meaner then a cobra, 2 faced, shallow..... We have Never had a relationship. She sexually abused one of my younger sisters when she was 16. 3. Brother 5 years older, beat, tortured, hated me forever. I don't like him and feel sorry for his adult kids. that's it here. I have 8 sibs now. I don't ever want to these ones again and probably won't.
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Old 12-11-2007, 06:10 PM
 
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Your mistake is in assuming that adulthood is an age. It is not.

Good luck with the visit.

FWIW, and I should get out the anonymity paper bag, we've written off going to my sister's for the holidays anymore. She and her family are just a little too dysfunctional for us.

Also, I would talk directly to the brother about whatever irks you. My husband just went through a horrible ordeal when his father died a year ago, and he accidentally stumbled into his sister's blog, where she said some very mean, hurtful things that totally blindsided him. He had NO idea how much his sister resented him. It was the worst way to find out Poor guy
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Old 12-11-2007, 06:27 PM
 
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OP, how does he get along with your parents and other sibs? I was the family scapegoat growing up, and I still am afaik. I have one brother I never talk with at all, and his wife was one of my best friends in high school, yet we have not had a conversation in over 10 years, possibly 15.

For me, it's hard to be the one to open up when both of my brothers found it so easy to take advantage of their privileged status in our home growing up, and then as adults they are both willing to automatically believe any negative thing my mother says about me without question. She is responsible for the rift between my older brother and SIL and I, and I have always been branded as a liar and the family 'crazy person.'

It's quite possible your brother is just a UAV, but it's also possible that he acts out because he feels like nobody likes him anyway, yk? It took me years to stop resenting my brother's good fortune. I'm fairly certain my 20s alternated between hyper-responsibility and teenaged rebellion because of my resentment. Yeah, he had a better childhood, and he still has better parents than I do, but at our age our life is what we make of it now. I feel sad that I don't have a better relationship with my brother and his wife, but I also know better than to beat my head against a wall trying to make someone see a truth they refuse to acknowledge.

Maybe if you can view him as someone who is in pain and stuck in an extended adolescence it will help you get through the week.

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Old 12-11-2007, 06:30 PM
 
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I haven't talked to my brother in at least 2 years. Like the OP said, just no relationship or warmth there, we might as well be total strangers. Trying to have a conversation is just awkward so we don't bother.

Single mom of 2 boys
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Old 12-11-2007, 11:31 PM
 
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I can't stand my brother, who is 26. He's incredibly immature, talks about stuff he knows NOTHING about, uses our parents, has many annoying habits, and has no personal ambition or passions outside fantasy novels and RPGs. He's never had a real girlfriend, lives at home, and has flunked out of three colleges. He has ADD and uses it as an excuse to get him out of having any kind of adult life. Oh, and he lies. Constantly. Has since he was in preschool.

Basically he froze at age 14, and I don't have any more patience for his act now than I did a decade ago. I'm sick of fighting with him, so I just get monosyllabic when he's around.

It felt therapeutic to type this all out.
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Old 12-13-2007, 02:00 AM
 
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Hugs. My sisters and I get along OK, but on a superficial level. It's sad to admit it, but I am so different than they are, and we have no meaningful relationship at all, save for talking about things we did together growing up. I wish we were closer but really, they just irritate me. I've found the best way to deal is just to sort of take it for what it is, take them for who they are, and try to let stuff roll off my back. Use the holidays as an opportunity to build positive interaction/ memories, but don't push it. After the holidays it will be easier to put distance between you if need be. I know that's all easier said than done.
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Old 12-13-2007, 11:04 AM
 
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I hate my sister and we nearly came to blows at Christmas a few years ago and I dont visit my family nearly as much anymore because I know she will be there. (she doesnt live that close to them but my mom thinks she is 'saving the family ties' by having her show up at the last minute and forcing me to be around her) I am civil around her out of respect for my parents but NEVER go out of my way to visit her, and would be happier if she fell off the face of the earth quite frankly. (not wishing her ill, just wishing she'd move to Alaska or something~)

She is strict almost to the point of abusive in my mind. She is a very hard person when it comes to her kids. Her ideals about life are as far from mine as humanly possible. Our last fight was when she yelled at my son and when I told her that if she had a problem with my kid to let me know and I'd handle it, she suggested that I wasnt doing my job as a parent or she wouldn't have to do it for me. This is a woman who pawned her firstborn off on my parents and the baby's dad so much that he finally just took her to court and got custody. And now she complains about having to pay child support (where as I have had to let my son go without because his dad didnt think child support was important either). Now she has fallen in love for the thousandth time, and this time has taken his religion and is putting her child into a private school run by his religion, and as I am a wiccan, and my family (including my sister) has NEVER been religious in any way, its really hard to see this as her making a valid choice for herself, and instead I think she is just going to screw her child up even more than she already has by showing her that its ok to pretend to believe in something for all the wrong reasons. She also thinks I'm a bad mom because I am not 'harder' on my kids and thinks the ferber method of sleep training is the best thing that ever existed.

We dont have any kind of abuse or horrible past. We fought as kids but I always got the upper hand because I'm the oldest. My parents tried to make things 'even' for us. But I still hate her and really gave up a long time ago trying to make any kind of relationship with her. My parents seem to think that we'll reconcile, but I am 31 now and somehow I just dont see it ever happening, probably because I dont care in the least.
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Old 12-13-2007, 04:22 PM
 
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I have five siblings. I get along with most of them OK, but we aren't particularly close. One sister, however, is just nuts. She's negative and miserable all the time, and I avoid her where possible.

Dh has three brothers. One of them is obnoxious beyond belief, and the other two are merely arrogant. He doesn't like any of them much.

I learned a long time ago to let go of what families "should" look like.
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Old 12-14-2007, 12:11 AM
 
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I have a brother I haven't spoken to in 17 years. He was very verbally abusive when I was a teenager at home. I moved away and stopped talking to him and haven't since
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Old 12-16-2007, 10:51 PM
 
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I think it's fairly normal to have a sibling that you don't get along with. I have a brother who is two years younger than me and I don't feel close to him at all. We speak maybe every 6 months and I haven't seen him in a long time. He didn't even come to say goodbye to me and my family when we moved to a different state. He shows almost no interest in my kids. It's kind of sad because I think his wife would love to have a relationship with us but for some reason he avoids us. He avoids all of his family, though...

Mama to 3 kids. We live in a yurt!
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:16 PM
 
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I only have one blood brother (and three brothers-in-law, whom I adore). My blood brother and I do NOT get along at all. I have posted about him before. He is tempermental, verbally abusive, violent and reactive. He thinks he is better than everyone else and does not (show that he) cares about anyone else.

And he's coming to my house Christmas morning.

Luckily, I am mature enough to ignore his verbal vomit, but if he says anything against my son, I am considering kicking him out.
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:18 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elisabeth78 View Post
I can't stand my brother, who is 26. He's incredibly immature, talks about stuff he knows NOTHING about, uses our parents, has many annoying habits, and has no personal ambition or passions outside fantasy novels and RPGs. He's never had a real girlfriend, lives at home, and has flunked out of three colleges. He has ADD and uses it as an excuse to get him out of having any kind of adult life. Oh, and he lies. Constantly. Has since he was in preschool.

Basically he froze at age 14, and I don't have any more patience for his act now than I did a decade ago. I'm sick of fighting with him, so I just get monosyllabic when he's around.

It felt therapeutic to type this all out.



If you replace role playing with raves and marijuana, we share the same brother.



We should start a support group for user brothers.
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Old 12-20-2007, 01:49 PM
 
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I could have easily fallen into this group. Last year I read "Siblings Without Rivalry," in an effort to keep my children from feeling the way that I did about my brother. We never spoke - and would only see each other maybe once or twice a year at family gatherings. In the process of reading this book, I found myself understanding more of what happened between my brother and me, and I reached out to him to see if we could begin to have an adult sibling relationship. He reciprocated, and now we are working on it together.

I know that not all sibling relationships can be repaired, but if anyone thinks there might be a chance, reading this book might help.

HTH

Laura - Mom to ds (10) and dd (7) "Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life." Brian Andreas.

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Old 12-21-2007, 04:09 PM
 
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I am the third of four girls, and while I am close and love my two older sisters more than anyone else outside my dh and ds, I can almost not bear to be around my younger sister. And we're about to see her, right before New Years. How apt this thread is, to be started around the holidays.

The thing is, I feel horribly guilty for not being able to stand being around her, because she has MS. She is disabled, and it has also affected her judgment, her cognizance, and in general her ability to plan, etc., I guess that's called the executive processing part of your brain. Anyway, it's a dilemma because how could you not feel sympathy for someone in her shoes, and she's struggled so hard with it. On the other hand--she too froze in her maturity in adoloscence and of all the people in the world she acts out on, its her older sisters. She longs for connection but is totally unable to make any, is utterly self absorbed. She acts as though she doesn't have a debilitating disease when it comes to taking care of herself and making sound decisions (which puts her into messes that the rest of the family has to clean up such as buying a $12,000 car when she has no money) but pulls the How can you? I've got MS! thing when it's convenient. She's more or less a nightmare to be around with my poor ds as she can't make any allowances for him at all. She gets hysterical and obnoxious at the drop of a hat, has had several manic episodes, is delusional and sometimes paranoid but won't see a therapist or even have a conversation about her mental health. And it's unbelievably hard to be around her. Her conversation is either inane or inappropriate or both. And she's incredibly angry. Well, I would be angry too, and I feel so sorry for her and also feel responsible, especially as my older sister who lives the closest to her does most of the work she entails. But at the same time she does what she can to push my buttons because I guess a fight is some sort of connection and she's terribly lonely. It feels so sad that a once-smart person is now someone you can't really have an intelligent conversation with. I remember her when she was a cute little girl. To be honest, I really can only take contact with her in a very limited way though I try to keep in phone contact because I know that it's important.

I know that this is different from the cases in which personalities just don't match--and I think that happens in families, or someone chooses a path so different from yours or whatever that you just can't be close, and that there are several mitigating factors that just change the whole thing. I wish I could help her but I have to steel myself to spend more than half an hour with her. And it's hard to put dh and ds through much of her company. I dislike it about myself and am trying hard to work on it so that I can be more tolerant, kinder, more accepting, though not of her being abusive and attacking, which she can be. That's one of my new years' resolutions. Here we go, 2008!
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Old 12-23-2007, 02:05 AM
 
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I totally and completely dislike my adult sister. I was the oldest of 3 children, my sister was the middle child. She is 18 months younger than I am. My brother who was 3 years younger than I am passed away at 21, 18 years ago. He is the sibling I as close to.
My sister has been a drug addict since she was a very young teenager, she was a dealer at 15. She gave my parents nothing but aggravation and grief. She had 2 babies, both she dumped on our parents and then took back when they were both approximately 10 months old and gave up for adoption. The first, she sold.. yes, sold for drug $. The second she turned over to the state dept. of human services and terminated her parental rights.
She put my parents through hell. I never spoke to her as an adult unless it was inevitable in our entire adult life. I haven't spoken to her since a week after my mom died almost 6 years ago. She doesn't know where I live or have any way to contact me. She's been in prison several times for various felonies, including check fraud, armed robbery and more things than I can name. She blames everyone for the way she is except for herself. She never worked unless it was for a day or two, just long enough to have a "work injury" and file a worker's comp claim and get a settlement... last I heard, she was on SSDI because her drug use made her too ill to work. What a waste.
Last I heard she's in jail again and she can stay there for all I care.
No love lost here.
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Old 12-23-2007, 03:07 AM
 
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I cannot stand my brother. We've fought like cats and dogs since we were teens and now that we're in our 20's it's not gotten any better. We can't even be in the same room together without wanting to kill each other. To be honest, I get along better w/both of my SIL, which is rather sad if you think about it.
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Old 12-23-2007, 05:14 AM
 
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I woudln't say at this point I dislike my brother, but I don't erally like him kwim? Totally neutral. We had a horrible relationship growing up, I can't even remember any good tiems we had in the middle. Constant fighting / hurting (pysical & emotional) etc. We don't fight anymore, but we have absolutly nothign in common. I will call him on his b-day, and he will call me if he rememberes, but we really dn't talk about another (how are you: fine. How is work? Fine. How are te kids? Fine. you get the idea). My mother has been pushing me to reach out and call him and try to develop a relationship, but honeslty I dn't really want to. I hold nothing against him at this point, and I guess I'm glad he's around, but we are just two totally different people. I wish she would have spent half the effort on our relationship when we were younger, maybe things would be different, but as it is i'm okay with it. Dh is close to a few of his brothers and sometimes I see their relationship and wish I could have it, but it wasn't meant to be. Heck even his brother that he is *not* close to calls about 1x a month and we try to get together & visit when we can (he lives in England & we are in Israel so it's not that often). that's kind of off topic though, sorry

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Old 12-24-2007, 02:41 AM
 
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My brothers are 39 and 37. The 39 year old is not married and is a pain in the rear. He does not like my children who are 10 and 9 and don't bother him at all. He returned all of the pictures I gave him of the kids. He doesn't acknowledge they exist and told my parents he doesn't want them calling him Uncle. My 37 year old brother has a wife and 3 kids and is a know it all and thinks he is better than everyone else. He makes me sick to my stomach and is very judgmental about everything I do. I have zero to nothing to do with either one of them. I am adopted and contemplating finding my birth parents so my children know they may have aunts and uncles who care about them beause the two idiots that I have brothers don't care a lick about them.

I am going to end up taking care of my parents when the time comes as my brothers could care less. I am closer to my cousins who are more like my siblings than my two brothers are. My cousins are like my brothers and sisters. My 39 year old brother won't show up for a holiday dinner if other people are around that is how selfish and conceited he is towards everyone. So my life is much better without them in it. They are too small minded for me.
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Old 12-26-2007, 06:28 PM
 
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Unfortunately, I cannot fully trust my older sister (she's my only sibling.) She and I are civil to each other and talk regularly, but sadly I have to watch what I say (I feel she's a bit of a blabbermouth)... But I'm learning to accept things as they are, though if I could have chosen a different person for a sibling, I would and she'd probably say the same! I do not have the type of sibling relationship that I would like, that's for darn sure.
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Old 12-26-2007, 07:33 PM
 
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my bro and I are very very close, though with the distance in living spaces (and the way we live our lives) it's made it difficult to be close, but we ALWAYS have meaningful conversation, b"h, and I feel like we just really truly understand each other in a way that most siblings or other people for that matter, don't.

my sister is 5 years younger and was the child that they both knew would be their last. She got EVERYTHING. from being breastfed the longest to being in her mid 20's and having my parents give her credit cards/money/paying rent/ etc (things they would NEVER have done for me or my brother, nor would we have thought it right to ask for something like that)

It's like there is one set of rules for the two of us and one for her. ANytime we brought this to their attention we were told "you are just jelous". And then guilttripped "she loves you both SO much...you just don't want her to _________fill in the blank" (find love/be happy/ have what she wants). Because we were both sisters and I was the oldest, I was expected to be SOOOOO close with her and share everything. Mom always wanted a sister and her older sister was born still, so she had this fantasy in her mind that me and my sis would have the relationship that she never had.

This combined with the fact that BOTH of my parents are youngest children who were repeatedly abused (physically/verbally and sexually) by their older siblings and often reminded us about how their siblings were just beyond cruel. IMMEDIATELY they jumped to the assumption that we would do the same if they didn't protect the baby. I remember my sister at the tender age of just a few years old saying things like "if you don't give me that toy/give me your candy/etc... then I am going to cry and tell mom and dad that you hit me". And she would. And they would ALWAYS believe her. ALWAYS.

We NEVER hit her, G-d Forbid. No more than the regular playing we all did. But we DID eventually learn a way to get her back without her being able to do anything about it and that was using our wits and intellect to discuss her. Which, admitedly, we did often. She was never so bright and to this day is not so bright and just doesn't get it.

At this point, I feel very sorry for her because I feel that she COULD be intelligent but she has just been so coddled and babied that she has never really had to use her wits to live by (mom and dad have done it all for her). She drinks too much too often, is in a really rotten relationship where her bf cheats on her and whatnot, and her direction in life is based on what my parents tell her to do.

She DOES call when things are going really bad. And I do what I can to help. But then she forgets about me for years on end!

She is very self absorbed, but I don't really expect much more from someone who was taught that she's entitled to be that way, and excuses are made for her when she is.

That being said, I'm no picnic either. I wasn't the best big sister (rather detached) though I've apologized to both of my sibs for that, and tried to make it right, but the damage is done, yk? Alot of the damage was my parents trying to turn my siblings against me for my wild teenaged antics. Like the time I got the 3rd degree from both of my siblings because my parents had "confided" to them that I had been drinking and smoking. Now, outside of a SIP (REALLY!) of alcohol and TRYING cigarettes, I was certainly NOT drinking and/or smoking, but my parents said it to them and they came at me as if I were some criminal...like on my way to prision and telling my parents they were afraid of me because I was a drug user and all of this. I NEVER used drugs. EVER. EVER. EVER. but TO THIS DAY can't get a single person in my family to belive me. Amazing. Truly. But all of this back and forth and making up stories (created and perpetuated by my parents) caused a major backlash of hatred and fear from my siblings that damaged my relationship with them forever.

Which is funny because within a few years BOTH my brother and sister were FREELY drinking, something I had never done, and never thinking a thing about it.



Anyways, didn't mean to rant but this is a real trigger for me. I had heard about that book recommendation before but haven't read it. Is that by the same people who did how to listen so your children can talk and talk so your children will listen, or whatever that book is called?

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Old 12-26-2007, 08:11 PM
 
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Anyways, didn't mean to rant but this is a real trigger for me. I had heard about that book recommendation before but haven't read it. Is that by the same people who did how to listen so your children can talk and talk so your children will listen, or whatever that book is called?
Yes - same authors:
http://www.amazon.com/Siblings-Witho...8706679&sr=8-2

It was a #1 New York Times best seller -- go figure!

I found the book helpful in a lot of aspects. Parents make mistakes they don't realize in setting up adversarial relationships (She's the pretty one and he's the smart one, not allowing siblings to work through disagreements on their own, etc.) and it addresses when you have a sibling with special needs. IMO, just understanding how some of the sibling dynamics came to be was therapeutic in and of itself.

Laura - Mom to ds (10) and dd (7) "Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life." Brian Andreas.

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Old 12-28-2007, 11:22 PM
 
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I had a cousin growing up who was just always mean... he played mean tricks... just hurtful. I didn't see him much after we were adults, we lived in different states. He died when we were in our mid-late 20's. His mother (my aunt) and I are about as close as 2 people can be and it is weird .. she misses him so so much. I forgave him after he died, i figured wherever he is now he sees the fault of his ways.

My sister who is 6 years younger than me is just annoying ... I mean I love her but she always finds some way of insulting you at every conversation. And like at Christmas... she breezes in like the Tasmanian devil is there for about 15 - 20 minutes and tornadoes right out ... uhh she is just exhausting ... and everyone feels the same way about her ... its sort of embarrassing, i find myself making excuses for her.

Mom to DD born 1989 DS born 1993 and grandma to
DGS born 2005
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