Your sister: is she your best friend or does she drive you nuts?
There are two kinds of sisters. One is your very best friend on earth. The two of you talk on the phone at least once a day. You can’t count the number of times you have called her and cried or complained or shared great news, and she is always there to listen and offer advice, encouragement and support. Getting together with her is truly a gift. It undoubtedly involves endless laughing, lots of joking around, and meaningful heart to hearts.
The other kind of sister is…let’s see, how can I put this? Challenging. She’s feisty, argumentative, often times difficult to love. Phone conversations are usually strained and end on a bad note. And when you see her, you’re counting the minutes till you can go home. Sound familiar?
Having a sister you can’t get along with can be extremely complicated and difficult. If you think about it, you almost have to love your sister. She’s your blood. You both came from the same mother and father. You share a bond.
It’s different with a girlfriend. Sometimes friends grow apart. Their interests might change, or they have an argument neither can get past, or they just realize they don’t have much in common anymore. So, the friends stop talking and eventually lose touch, or they have a huge falling out, and then the friendship is over. But you really can’t do that with your sister. She’s here to stay. So, get over it and start trying to have the best relationship you possibly can.
Here are five things you can do to improve your relationship with your sister:
1. Keep the conversation light and general. You disapprove of her lifestyle. You can’t listen to anymore of her stories anymore, or you’re going to lose it. You want to tell her she’s unethical, or wasting her life away. Here’s my advice. Don’t! Keep things polite and talk about happy subjects, such as a new yoga studio in the area, a great movie you saw, or my favorite: the latest makeup trend. Trust me, no one ever had a fight when discussing makeup!
2. A kind gesture goes a long way. The weather was horrible so you spent the day baking, and now you have all these cookies and cakes. Bring one over to her house with a nice card. You can even leave it on her back doorstep and text her! Nice little gestures show people you care for them. They go a long, long way.
3. Be the bigger person. If you and your sister have a big fight, you have nothing to win by holding a grudge and/or by staying angry. Call her and say something like, “I know we don’t agree but you’re my sister and I love you,” or “What you did hurt me and I think you should know that, but you’re my sister and I love you.” Whatever you say, always end with “but you’re my sister and I love you.” If she doesn’t respond or responds in a negative way, you’ve lost nothing. You can be proud of your behavior.
4. Focus on the good parts of her. Your sister may have a great sense of style when it comes to fashion. She might be a French cuisine connoisseur. She might have this uncanny ability to calm a crying baby. Or, she might just have a great smile. Whatever good traits your sister possesses, try to think about them. Gather up all the good in her that you can. Then, maybe, those things she does that make your eyes roll won’t seem as bad.
5. Laugh! The best way to stave off a fight is to make a joke and/or add humor to what’s going on. Half the time, you will get her to start laughing, too, and what could have ended up in a messy fight will be diverted and forgotten. Life is too short for drama. Plus, if you laugh a lot, studies show you’ll live longer.
As far as a sister you adore, make sure you do all of these things with her, too! Treasure her, appreciate her, tell her your love her!
“A sister is one of the nicest things that can happen to anyone.” –author unknown.
Jessica and Ashlee Simpson
Serena and Venus Williams
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The Kardashians (of course)