Basic reasons of step siblings rivalry

Step Siblings Rivalry

Today, there are several different kinds of families to be found in the world. The traditional nuclear family (two biological parents and their children) still makes up what is probably the most common household unit; however, the prevalence of divorce has led to an increasing number of stepfamilies where one parent has children who go on to marry someone else and create a blended family. This can be an extremely complicated situation, particularly when there are disagreements or resentments between the stepchildren and their new siblings.

Stepsiblings often have a lot of animosity towards one another, as they may feel that they are being forced to share their parents or that they are not getting as much attention as they deserve. This can lead to a lot of conflict and rivalries, as the children will compete for their parent’s love and approval. In some cases, the stepchildren may never really bond with each other and simply view one another as rivals who are always trying to outdo one another.

This kind of rivalry can be difficult for parents to deal with, particularly if they have biological children who are being pushed aside in favor of the new stepsiblings. This is why parents need to remember what their roles are in this situation — it is not their job to choose favorites or take sides when there are disputes between the children. Instead, they should remember that each child deserves equal amounts of love and affection.

Basic reasons for rivalry

A young boy standing in front of a mountain

Rivalry with siblings is very common, especially under certain circumstances. Like step sibs, half-siblings usually do not grow up together but are thrown into each others’ company as adults. Sometimes this leads to some level of resentment or at least an awareness on the part of each party that they do not equal, not ‘best friends, etc. The half-sibs may take a very long time to get to know each other and form a genuine, loving bond. Multiple marriages or remarriages between parents complicate things further, but the same rules apply about not favoring one over the others.

My two cents: Relationships are tricky enough when you’re not related, to begin with. Furthermore, relationships between brothers and/or sisters are even more complex, as the stakes are higher for this relationship. Not only does one risk being closer to a sibling than an average friend, but there is also the possibility of actually becoming close enough that romantic feelings could develop.

The most important thing in any family is to remember that each child is an individual, not a ‘cog’ in the family machine. Each child will have their strengths and weaknesses, so while one may be better at sports than the other, he/she might have other talents that are just as great or greater than their sibling. As parents, it is essential to recognize this and give each child the time and attention they deserve without showing favoritism or living vicariously through their children.


A little girl posing for a picture

Family rivalries are nothing new, but with the increased number of blended families due to divorce, there has been an increase in stepfamilies where one parent is already married when a new spouse comes along with children from a previous relationship.

Subscribe to our monthly Newsletter
Subscribe to our monthly Newsletter