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Question
Posted by: Anon | 2012/01/12

Sibling rivalry

Me and my younger sister work far from my parents house. We always meet at parents house during the festive holidays. My younger sister has a good paying job. Every festive holidays when we go home she does not buy food, cook,clean, wash dishes or do any of the house chores. Everttime when we are at home i have to buy food for her,cook,clean and do all the chores while she is sitting and doing nothing. In 2010 i tried talking to her but she told me i have a big mouth and she told me she is eating her mom''s food. It got too much for me this year and i asked my parents to talk to her but they refused. I ended up leaving before christmas day and it was for the first time i spent chrismas way from my parents.

I also have a brother whom was expelled form the university and i was staying with him last year. Things were fine in the house until he got a job and he did not want to help with anything in the house including buying food. Things got worse when i decided to ask him for electricity money. He gave me the money while grumbling and since then he started giving me a silence treatment it my house. He made me feel like a stranger in my house that i decided to show him the door.

Am i a bad person? This thing hurts me and i do not know how to resolve it. There is 4 of us at home and i only get along with the last born and i am the first born.

Apologies for the long post.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

So she's lazy and selfish. Why do your parents not comment on this and remin her of her normal social duties ? And why should you ever buy food for her ? Let her buy her own, or go hungry.
How cheeky for your younger sister to rudely tell you that you have a big mouth, when you remind her of her laziness.
Maybe if your parents are so foolish as to allow her to behave like this, and to expect you to be her servant, its not wise for you to spend holidays with them - tell them you love them and would like to do so, but only when they have spoken to the younger sister and have made sure she will be respectful and do her full share of chores , food-buying, and so on. You do not need to remain a servant of such a rude and selfish girl.
About the brother, I'm not sure I understand what you're saying. Is this YOUR house you both share, or his ? Who owns it or pays for it ? IF its your place, you're the boss, and should lay down the law about what you expect of him, what he should pay and how he should share the chores. If you have chosen to tell him to leave - good ! Thats not bad at all, but sensible. People will get away with using you so badly only if you allow them to do so.
As you are the first born, they owe you respect. COngratulations on standing up for yourself, and don't allow inappropriate guilt to influence you, and dont let them resume their bad behaviours. In your hom, you decide what you expect, and anyone who wants to live there must keep to your rules or leave. And your parents cant expect you to come home to do all the work and be abused by a horrible little sister.
Maybe now, finding his own place, and seeing the expenses and the amount of work involved, your brother might begin to understand and appreciate you. And maybe without you there to do all the work, your parents will have to either do it themselves, or persuade your lazy sister to do it, and she too may recognize how much you were doing, without thanks.

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2
Our users say:
Posted by: Liza | 2012/01/12

Hmmm. You definitely don''t sound like a bad person. Only one who doesn''t like being treated as an open wallet and a doormat.

When people stay in YOUR house, they have to abide by your rules. Plain and simple. Your house is not a free boarding facility.

As for holidays at your parents'' place, just stop buying food and only clean up a mess that you have made. If no-one else is willing to cook or there is no food in the house - go out and buy yourself something to eat. Do not cook and clean just because no-one else is willing. Your parents seem completely comfortable with letting her behave like a spoilt brat. This is not your fault and not something you can change.

My siblings have learnt their lesson with me. I also used to be treated as an open wallet - I changed this by learning how to say NO. Assertiveness is a very important life skill that far too many people do not have. Or people confuse being aggressive with being assertive. Just remember that assertiveness is productive, whereas aggressiveness is usually counter-productive.

Good Luck
Liza

Reply to Liza
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/01/12

So she's lazy and selfish. Why do your parents not comment on this and remin her of her normal social duties ? And why should you ever buy food for her ? Let her buy her own, or go hungry.
How cheeky for your younger sister to rudely tell you that you have a big mouth, when you remind her of her laziness.
Maybe if your parents are so foolish as to allow her to behave like this, and to expect you to be her servant, its not wise for you to spend holidays with them - tell them you love them and would like to do so, but only when they have spoken to the younger sister and have made sure she will be respectful and do her full share of chores , food-buying, and so on. You do not need to remain a servant of such a rude and selfish girl.
About the brother, I'm not sure I understand what you're saying. Is this YOUR house you both share, or his ? Who owns it or pays for it ? IF its your place, you're the boss, and should lay down the law about what you expect of him, what he should pay and how he should share the chores. If you have chosen to tell him to leave - good ! Thats not bad at all, but sensible. People will get away with using you so badly only if you allow them to do so.
As you are the first born, they owe you respect. COngratulations on standing up for yourself, and don't allow inappropriate guilt to influence you, and dont let them resume their bad behaviours. In your hom, you decide what you expect, and anyone who wants to live there must keep to your rules or leave. And your parents cant expect you to come home to do all the work and be abused by a horrible little sister.
Maybe now, finding his own place, and seeing the expenses and the amount of work involved, your brother might begin to understand and appreciate you. And maybe without you there to do all the work, your parents will have to either do it themselves, or persuade your lazy sister to do it, and she too may recognize how much you were doing, without thanks.

Reply to cybershrink

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