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Why you may not like your brother or sister

Sibling rivalry can be present if one or both siblings are intellectually gifted or especially talented. If sibling animosity is left unchecked, it colours relationships between siblings in adulthood.

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Sibling rivalry can also be present if one or both siblings are intellectually gifted or especially talented. If sibling animosity is left unchecked, it colours relationships between siblings in adulthood.

According to a research by the University of Michigan Health Systems, sibling rivalry has a number of causes. Here are four of such causes:

·Unequal amount of parental attention- sibling rivalry can result if one sibling feels they receive little attention from their parents as compared to the attention other siblings get. Favouritism from parents results in two things. First of all, there is heated competition for parental attention between siblings. Secondly, the sibling who gets little attention may develop a hatred for the favoured sibling.

·Unequal amount of parental discipline- if parents are quick to punish one child and let another off the hook, sibling rivalry can occur as one child may feel that he/she is less loved by their parents. When I was younger for example, I convinced myself on a number of occasions that I was adopted. This is because I was always the one who got smacked for doing the wrong thing, not my little sister.

·A family that forbids physical fighting- Children are bound to fight, especially when they play. A family which forbids physical fighting while refusing to find alternate means to the expression of anger can have a case of sibling rivalry. The inability to resolve conflicts through open confrontations results in the accumulation of hostilities which then leads to sibling rivalry.

·Stress in a parent’s life- fatigue, emotional stress and a lack of attentiveness on the part of parents can impact negatively on healthy relationships between siblings.

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