Envy between siblings can occur at any age , the childhood stage being more prone , when they are younger. Any gesture of an adult person can already generate a dispute between both brothers. For example, when you are the first child in the family and the attention is all for him / her and suddenly a cousin or brother comes, it is a key moment to teach that envy does not exist and create a healthy bond . Two things can happen, that you adapt to the situation or that on the contrary you are envious , that is why it is very important to educate from childhood so that this feeling is not present in later years.

What is envy?

First of all, envy must be understood as a feeling of frustration that arises from the desire to have what others have . There may be healthy envy, for example, being happy because your best friend has bought a car, and although you would like it and right now you can’t, not for that reason you are going to have unhealthy envy, but quite the opposite, you want him the best. Things get complicated when it comes to siblings and when they are little . This fact not only occurs with material things, but with any situation such as possessing qualities or results that others have achieved and the other party has not.

It is an unpleasant sensation that in some cases can be noticed. The feeling of annoyance makes us not feel good about ourselves, it can even provoke anger towards other people. On this occasion, anger towards the sibling may arise. In some cases, envy is related to low self-esteem or the desire to always have the leading role , as happens between siblings.

Tips to avoid sibling envy

    1. Do not encourage competition between them . What you have to do is avoid this type of feeling, because that would increase the anger or envy between them. That is why you have to make them understand that they are part of the same team and that both are there to support and help each other, that together they are stronger. Each sibling will have different abilities and what you have to do is reinforce each other.For example, if you are better at math, help your brother / sister, and so on in all cases. Avoid any hurtful comment like: “if you try harder you will become like your brother / sister . ” Those kinds of phrases are the ones that foster hatred between both parties. You have to eliminate them completely and make them understand that if they help each other they will go further , together, not separately.
    1. Mediating conflicts in an equitable manner . In the event that there is some kind of discussion, you do not have to position yourself , although there is clearly one position that is more right than the other. This can provoke that envy and that the relationship between siblings becomes cold and not positive. As soon as this type of situation is witnessed, you should not let them solve it alone, because the strongest will try to leave the brother in a bad place, and that can also cause problems with self-esteem and envy .You have to ask them to explain themselves in turns and in good manners , to know what really happened. Once both have presented their versions, you have to make them understand that you have to reach a middle ground in order to find a solution . When both parties feel satisfied, the discussion-confrontation can be closed.
    1. Encourage positivity and friendship between siblings . You have to make them understand that having a brother is lucky, that he is a kind of best friend that they can always count on. In this way, a most beautiful and special bond will be created . In order for them to achieve that affinity, it will be necessary to make joint plans so that little by little they will gain more confidence and complicity, and when they reach adulthood they are inseparable no matter how far they live and lead totally different lives.
    1. Highlight the best traits of each sibling . It is always positive to highlight the traits of each brother so that they are aware that each one is better at something, and in this way they eliminate envy and anger for each other. Moreover, they can help to improve in the aspects that stand out the least. This circumstance will also create a closer bond between the two and a lifelong friendship will be generated , not just a family union.
  1. Pay attention equally . At the moment in which a brother feels more cared for than another, he will feel more protected and protagonist, and that can trigger envy for the other party. Siblings should always be treated the same, whether they are given a gift or in other circumstances. By treating them equally, they themselves will know that they are just as important and that will avoid any kind of envy between them.


Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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