Sisters, real sisters, make an effort to stay connected – especially with their family of origin – especially with their brothers and sisters. Sisters connect whenever, wherever possible.
A study by family experts found that most people wanted their relationships with their siblings to improve – whether they were close or estranged. They just didn’t know how or where to start.
Here are a few of their suggestions on how to go about the daunting process of connecting more deeply or reconnecting with siblings.
- Let it go. Unresolved issues from childhood can create conflict in adult relationships. Unfortunately, that is how we sometimes define our adult relationships with our sibs – through the lens of childhood. If it is a minor infraction – “she wore my clothes and ruined them”- learn to forgive and forget. Something more serious? If talking it out with the sib is not possible, maybe some outside source could provide insight and help you move on.
- Stop it! Family gossip is dreadful and undermines the foundation of trust needed to foster a healthy sibling relationship.
- Fire central casting! Families assign roles to its members – some flattering, some not so much. It is an easy transition to peg adults with the same roles. You know, the baby, the overachiever, the pouter, the one that was never good with money. View your sibs in their grown up role and bring something good in you to the table. It will do wonders for your relationship!
- Become iSibs. Yes, long chatty calls are nice, but not always possible. Stay connected with short texts about what is going on in your life: “Headed to the cabin-makes me think of summers as a kid when we would go camping.” BAM! Connection made. Here at Call Me Sister, we often will share an email with “Sibling Update” in the subject line. And a very long thread ensues….
- Here is something to remember when trying to connect with a sibling (or anyone else, really!)