Why Parents Need to Curb Unhealthy Sibling Rivalry: Mama’s Story

Adesua Iyoyojie

I was a daddy’s girl when I was a teenager, I travelled on several occasions with him. One time we went for the burial ceremony of his colleague’s mother, and then I witnessed a bitter exchange amongst adult siblings. It was obvious the rivalry between them had deep roots.

It was a celebration of life due to the fact that the deceased was over the age of 90. Her 3 children invited lots of friends and well wishers. She had 2 males and a female.

The first son had a canopy , music band and a dedicated caterer for his guests – the second son had same. Music was playing here and there, everything seem disorganised.

READ ALSO: 8 Practical Ways To Handle Sibling Rivalry

Then the caterer from the first son’s canopy served a guest from the second son’s canopy and a massive fight broke out.

“My food?  How dare you!”

Fistcuffs were flying, and everyone was shocked that the brothers hated themselves that much.

Two grown men, fighting over something as insignificant as that lead to side talks and their guests had one thing to say,

“Late mama caused it.”

READ ALSO: Sibling Rivalry: Medical Students Scalds Stepsister with Hot Water

Mama had always treated her second son like her blood but treated her first son like an adopted child while they were both blood siblings. It was sadly glaring to everyone who knew the family that she loved one more, and it gradually turned into rivalry.

Rivalry grew into hatred.

They grew up competing for their mother’s love and attention. They grew into cat and mice.

That wasn’t their mother intention but it was bound to happen.

Some parents are guilty of this . What they don’t realise is that their children can’t all be the same.

  • You have to appreciate them equally.
  • Embrace and celebrate their uniqueness.
  • Tolerate their differences.

READ ALSO: 9 Ways to Help An Older Sibling Adjust to A New Baby

Rivalry never ends. Don’t create a bridge between your children. You will grow old, die and leave them with the bitterness you planted in their hearts.

Some parents say it is natural to love one child more than the other .

Is it really natural or just an excuse?

2 Discussions on
“Why Parents Need to Curb Unhealthy Sibling Rivalry: Mama’s Story”
  • I think it is just an excuse. My mom loves my younger sister more than she does me and it’s glaring hence myself and my mom are always at logger heads. Parents should learn how to handle these things.

  • My Mum did same. I’m a middle child (2 before and 2 after me). She not only showed by her actions that she didn’t like me like my 4 siblings, she told me at the age of 17. When I asked her why she doesn’t like me like my siblings, she said she can’t like all of us the same. Now, I’m almost 40 and my siblings and I don’t have a good relationship. I only relate with our last born. The other 3 only look for me when the need financial assistance. Once they get it, they’re off. Now, we aren’t even on speaking terms. My Mum caused it all.

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