Relations between brothers and sisters form a space for personal and social development.
- The relationship between siblings shapes a person’s life from a young age.
- These special bonds teach cooperation, conflict resolution, sharing and empathy.
- Sibling dynamics therefore promote emotional intelligence and a better understanding of interpersonal relationships.
The special relationship between brothers and sisters is at the heart of identity construction. If this special relationship between siblings shapes a person’s life from a very young age, it is because it influences both their way of thinking, their emotions, and their understanding of relationships with others.
Enriching the relationship between brothers and sisters
Sibling relationships play a fundamental role in social and emotional development. These special bonds teach cooperation, conflict resolution, sharing and empathy. They also provide a multitude of opportunities to learn to navigate social relationships, understand the emotions of others and develop effective communication.
By observing and interacting with elders or younger children, children learn appropriate social behaviors, understand the emotions of others, and know how to adapt and negotiate. Sibling dynamics therefore promote emotional intelligence and a better understanding of interpersonal relationships.
The notion of “fraternal compensation”
The idea that the relationship between siblings can compensate for the emotional deficiencies of parents has been studied. This hypothesis maintains that mutual assistance and unity among siblings compensates for the lack of affection or attention from parents.
Indeed, the weaker the relationship between parents and children in interaction, the stronger the sibling relationships will be, confirming the idea that brothers and sisters act as substitute figures for parents. This mutual assistance thus becomes crucial for balanced development, especially in the absence of adequate parental support.
Hostility between siblings
On the other hand, in some families, parental favoritism can cause tension and hostility, even jealousy and rivalry between siblings. If one of the children perceives that he is less favored, he may then push his siblings away, sometimes even going as far as aggressive behavior.
We therefore see that the behavior of parents towards brothers and sisters has an influence on the way in which siblings will unite or tear apart.
Learn more: “Brothers and Sisters Forever: The Imprint of Siblings on Our Adult Relationships” by Lisbeth Von Benedek.