Family Relations/Sister and Mom


My sister is 24 years old and she and our mother have a very poor relationship. My sister has made some bad decisions throughout her life. She dropped out of high school at 16, got pregnant at 17 and married the father of that child after she turned 18. When she was 19 they got divorced and six months later had another child with a different man. Those are just a few of the decisions she made. The problem is my sister treats my mother really badly. She calls her a horrible mother, tells her she neglected us growing up, was emotionally abusive, and because of her upbringing, it was our mothers fault that she made all these mistakes with her life. She hasnít even went as far as posting on my motherís Facebook page that she has used our fatherís child support check on doing drugs and drinking.

The thing is our parents divorced just before my sister was born. My father wasnít always in the picture. He worked a lot, and moved on to be remarried. He and my sister have a good relationship. He gives her money, watches her kids often. She feels that our mother doesnít do anything for her. Growing up we always had food on the table, clothes on our back (werenít brand name, but we had clean clothes) and a bed to sleep in. My dad paid my mom support every month (590.00) which went towards our basic needs. We didnít really get a lot of extra stuff. For Christmas and birthdays, we usually received only one or two gifts and they were usually things we needed rather than wanted. One year I got a new pair of winter boots, and she got a new outfit (this was the only time she got an brand name outfit).

My sister accusing our mother of being emotionally abusive, which isnít true? She never said one mean thing about either one of us. Never blamed us for her problems never told her any names, or anything. She wasnít an affectionate mother and at times, what you would consider cold. I canít recall her ever saying she loved us, or giving us hugs. But I do believe she loved us, because she was this way with everyone. We learned to be responsible at a young age, and learned to work for what we wanted. I got my first paper route when I was 11 years old. I saved up my own money for certain things I wanted (toys, video games, comic books, etc.) I managed to put myself through secondary schooling. She makes it sound like she never gave us anything for entertainment. We a TV we could watch, and she provided reading material. I think what makes my sister the angriest is because my mother doesnít seem to care that she is mad. My mother told. ďI took care of you growing, and if she wants to be ungrateful then donít expect anything else out of me.Ē

Iím stuck in the middle and I donít know what to do. I love my sister, but I canít agree with her, because I had a great mother growing up. Sure, she wasnít perfect but she was still good to both of us. What can I do? Am I really just confused?

Hi Tan,
I went through each paragraph carefully. I understand your situation. Certainly your sister has taken some wrong decision in her life. Though no one is responsible for her deeds, however, she needs an affectionate counseling. Yes, you love your sister but at the same time you are rightly disagreeing with your sister. It's great that you have such gratitude towards your mother.

Undoubtedly, your mother has brought up you two sisters painstakingly. She fulfilled the basic needs of you two sisters. You are grateful whereas your sister is not so. Your mother have brought up or treated you both with same eyes. But the persons(here you and your sister# is seeing this differently. One #you) is considering it as good and OK and the other have other ideas. Well, we have to understand here that not every two persons are of same nature and understanding.

What is needed here is that your sister needs a careful and affectionate attention. If your mother can have this approach towards your sister or if you can convince her about the necessity of this, it would be great.
My mother told. ďI took care of you growing, and if she wants to be ungrateful then donít expect anything else out of me.Ē Such attitude will not work rather worsen your sister's emotions. Here you can play a bigger role. One is that you should convince your mother to have a affectionate approach towards your younger sister and the other is that you also should affectionately counsel your sister. She needs to understand the situation in which her mother has brought up you both. Also, it is how important to take right decision on right time. You can tell her that marrying at such a younger age and becoming mother of two was her sole decision. Put your own example before her that if there was any fault in upbringing then why you are not blaming for that? Why your condition is not as bad as hers? In fact, it is necessary to understand that how our decisions affect ourselves. No one else can be responsible for that.

If you can arrange a counseling session for her by an expert, it would be really helpful. Other idea is that you can also ask for help from your father in this regard. As she seems to be a bit close to him, it may work.

Wishing you all the best!

Shashank Shekhar
You can contact me online on the above URL.  

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Shashank Shekhar Pandey


Family / Parenting / Relationships, Psycho-Spiritual Counseling, Self Esteem, Motivation, Eating disorders (Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia) Ask an Expert - Visit my Virtual Office at LivePerson


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B.A, Diploma in psychotherapy, diploma in Yoga Teaching and Therapy, diploma in Nutrition & Health Education, degree in Pranic & Spiritual healing and Master in Reiki.
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