sibling rivalry

I grew up knowing my Mum preferred my younger sister.

She was always sticking up for her and taking her side, and telling me off in the process. Blatant favouritism. 

Then I had two children of my own and I suddenly had an entirely new perspective on the situation; because us older siblings can be just plain mean. 

As the eldest child, I considered it part of my job to torment my sister. This took various forms: saving my sweets while she scoffed all hers then slowly eating mine in front of her; refusing to let her talk to me at school; convincing her I could forecast the weather (?); generally treating her like my dogsbody.

Older kids: do not pretend you didn’t do that as well. 

Now I see Big Sis employing some of the same tactics, and I’m constantly having to jump in just to level the playing field. I find myself telling Big Sis off more often because I see aaaaaaall her little tricks: ordering Lil Sis around; kicking her sister under the table; encouraging her to do naughty things then disavowing any knowledge when Lil Sis gets caught.

*lightbulb moment*

So, I guess – with this new-found crystal-clear hindsight – I have some apologies to make…

Sorry Mum. Sorry Kirsten. And, no, I don’t know what the weather will be like this weekend.



  1. I’m the older sibling in my family too, and i definitely think i was mean haha. It’s a part of the job of being the eldest!

  2. Being an only child, I never went through that, but I can definitely understand the problems between an older sibling and a younger one, haha

  3. 100% sure I used to do this to my youngest sister. The middle sister had more sense to just ignore and let me get in trouble!

  4. I’m the oldest sibling and I feel like I wasn’t super mean to my sister but i was incredibly bossy.

  5. LOL. I am guilty of doing some of these to my younger sister but I also have older brother and he did the same to me too 🙂

  6. Lol it’s interesting to see the way we were mirrored in our children. My mum seemed to favour my siblings although it might have been that they challenged her more so she gave them more attention.

  7. I know exactly what you mean except it was the other way round for me. Not only was I the one who was always getting told off but because I was younger I was always treated like a child. Now though as an adult I can understand why and I have some apologies to make too. Oops !

  8. I am sure this happens a lot with lots of families and I remember it being like that with my younger sister

  9. Oh goodness – wait until they are teens! Mine are the best of friends and the worst bickerers possible. Tormenting each other at every opportunity! Kaz x

  10. Awwwww, what a fab post Jacqui! I was the younger one, and remember always getting away with things, but also the things my older brother used to do to me….. Raising two girls, 5 years apart brings another perspective to me too. I know I favour Olivia all the time, and am not fair on Isabelle (the angel as you know her), as it is the easier way. Olivia can be a pickle sometimes, and knows how to use this! I think in my case I need to stand up for Isabelle more …. the most important thing is they love each other, and have a nice relationship most of the time x

  11. Yes to this. I feel bad telling Oliver off relentlessly but being the eldest, he has the upper hand and really manipulates little Xander x

  12. I never had this being an only child, but to be honest wish I did. The boys both look after their little sister so far, but I’m sure this will come x

  13. […] and although they bicker and argue and occasionally disown each other (did you read my post on SIBLING RIVALRY?), the animosity never lasts and within minutes they’re screaming with laughter […]

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