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Jealousy of kids sibling relationship


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  Recently I was talking with a friend and the subject of jealousy and kids came up. In my family I have one child that is jealous of the relationship a couple of my other children have, which causes conflict and I feel sorry for said child. My friend confided that she realized she is jealous of the relationship her two kids have with each other. They turn to each other instead of to her when they have problems or need help with anything, and she said it makes her sad and jealous. This caused me to think about different times I have been passed over for a sibling and how it made me feel.

Have you ever experienced jealousy of the relationship some of your kids have with each other?

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No, I have not felt jealousy because of my children's relationships with each other.  In fact, I celebrate that they are quite close to one another and turn to each other in times of need, nor do I feel envious of relationship they have with my sister.  The wider a person's support network is, the better chance they have of making it through tough times intact.

I do not want to hijack thread so I may start another thread about an interesting observation that some parents are jealous of what their children achieve and attempt to minimize their accomplishments.

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No. I might have been jealous at some point when my kids were younger but by the time I had a house with multiple teens I really was desperate for them to go to someone else with their problems. I know that sounds terrible and of course I would want to help them in any way I could with any serious issue they had. However, it did become exhausting to be everyone's primary. I could see myself when they were young being jealous if they went to dh or another dc instead of me but by the time they were young adults I was really hoping if they wrecked their car someone else would be the first phone call! 

None of my kids are super close but at this point I would be so grateful if they were that I would not be jealous at all. In fact, I guess that came up recently. One of my kids was exposed to Covid and suspected he had it and he confided in a sibling before the test came back. He did have Covid but I wasn't jealous at all that I wasn't the first one he told. I know he wanted to talk to someone else before he had all the details and I am plenty happy he sought to spare me extra worry. 

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No, I can't say that it makes me feel jealous at all. It sometimes concerns me when a child turns to dd23 (most often it's ds18) because she is unwise and often gives bad/toxic advice.

I delight in ds18 and dd16's friendship. There were some years when their maturity wasn't a match and they grew apart and that really bummed me out. But now they're back on the same level and close again. I don't even mind when they keep secrets from me (dd always knows Ds's girl status before the rest of us). 

Not that you were asking this, but I also have the inter sibling jealousy dynamic with my kids. Dd 23 always struggled with the younger 2's relationship. I felt sorry for her, too, however, she often dug her own hole with that. As a young adult, I can't say that I'm sorry that she's not close with them (see above).

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My kids are far closer than I was to my siblings.  I am not jealous of them.  My husband, on the other hand, has very close relationships with his siblings, and I will admit that sometimes I am jealous of those relationships.  I have two siblings.  One who I haven't seen since my father's funeral, 21 years ago, and one who I see once a year, except when there's covid.  

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I could see a child feeling jealousy?  But I love my kids have had generally a good friendship over the years. I suspect my daughter especially tells my son more than she tells me.  I'm fine with it.   

I have one sibling and was close to him at points through out teen years and young adulthood.  But when someone marries a really unbalanced person who has no interest in fostering family relationships, it's hard to maintain more than a passing relationship.  My brother blames me probably, I think he lost a few too many brain cells as a young adult and doesn't have a lot of self awareness.   

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I am extremely close to my brother and it has endured over my move here. We've always had each other, never had to look at our parents. Even now while we are close to our parents, we always turn to each other. We are just the two of us, no other siblings. My brother knows me enough that he can pick up my mood just from my hello tone of voice. Even DH cannot read me that well. But my brother has always done that and I know him that well too.  There is a comfort in someone knowing you so well.

DH and his brother are like that. Extremely close. They have a sister they hardly have a relationship with except as a sibling. They are ok with their parents.

The downside to having close sibling relationships is you tend to turn to them first instead of your spouse. All of us have had to work on that. It has also meant setting up boundaries between what to share and not. It has meant keeping things from spouses with their knowledge. For instance, I know DH talks with BIL almost everyday after his shift as a doctor and helps him process his feelings. I do not know the details though. I do know it is distressing because DH is very upset so I help him process that. 

I have always wanted that for my kids but they have a gap of 9 years between them, COVID though has made them a lot closer. 

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I have sometimes wondered if my brother has some resentment/jealousy issues about me. He's said some things that indicate that he does. The family was more stable when I was little and less for him. I have a closer relationship with my mother and had a decent one with my father. We're just SO different though. I could write a book... Sigh.

For my kids... I don't know. I think one might have some sibling jealousy over some things. I'm not sure. They bicker and don't always understand each other. But also, they're pretty close. I'll see how it all comes out, I guess.

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My siblings and I are not close, and my husband is not close to his sibling. I worry that our kids will not be close, and wish they were closer now.  Most likely, the day will come that they are the only family for each other (excluding the families they may marry into and start on their own of course). 

 

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I am not jealous of the relationship my children have with each other.  I can't even really imagine that.  I sometimes wish my relationship with my sister was more like the relationship my husband has with his sister.  They're not SUPER close, the way some people are with their siblings (haven't lived in same city as adults ever, for instance), but they share interests and get along well.  My sister is six years younger, and while I usually see her once a year or so, in non covid times, we don't share common interests and didn't really share a growing up together thing.  We're not exactly strangers, but more like facebook friends.  

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My kids are young but it pleases me greatly when my children lean on each other for comfort.  I can't imagine being jealous of their relationships with one another. Them being close for the rest of their lives is one of my main goals as a parent. I am incredibly close to some of my siblings and would certainly lean on them during certain times over my mom.  But really my mom is still my mom and none of them can even come close to replacing her as emotional support during the worst of times.  

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I grew up in a family where my maternal grandmother was jealous of several of her sisters. (no brothers).  My mother was an  only child, so we were around her a lot.

she continued those attitudes to pitting my siblings and I against each other for her approbation.  As adults - we have extremely strained relationships (when we're actually speaking.)

No way in HADES will I ever do that to my children.  Instead, - I have rejoiced my children have good relationships with each other.  They chose to spend time together, and do things together.  Parents may or may not be there - but their relationships with each other are healthy.  It doesn't mean less of me as a mother - it means I did something right in that my kids like each other and want to spend time with each other.

 

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My children are very close, even the ones with large age differences. I’m both happy about and proud of that fact because my family of origin was full of the good kid/bad kid dynamic. I do find that some of the relationships with my adult kids are just easier than others. 
 

Sometimes I suspect that one of my kids has twinges of jealousy about how close everyone else is. I feel like she wants everyone to be close to her, but is a little threatened when everything doesn’t include her and they have separate relationships and activities that don’t always include her. I have to watch closely or she will plant little seeds of discord which I will not tolerate. I don’t know why she is like that. Dh says it is just a different kind of personality. 

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I'm an only child and love that my four kids are so close.  There is a big age gap between my older three and my youngest and they live in four different states, but they are all in constant contact electronically.  They are all so supportive and helpful to each other - it really touches me and I treasure those rare times that we are all together.  

One of my kids seems to be the heart of the family - all of his siblings are closest to him, but still close to each other.  

As an only child, I never had any idea the influence siblings have on each other.  It's really amazing.  

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23 hours ago, saraha said:

  Recently I was talking with a friend and the subject of jealousy and kids came up. In my family I have one child that is jealous of the relationship a couple of my other children have, which causes conflict and I feel sorry for said child. My friend confided that she realized she is jealous of the relationship her two kids have with each other. They turn to each other instead of to her when they have problems or need help with anything, and she said it makes her sad and jealous. This caused me to think about different times I have been passed over for a sibling and how it made me feel.

Have you ever experienced jealousy of the relationship some of your kids have with each other?

No. My dh is an only child. I might as well be. We have purposely tried to encourage our children to be close to each other.  We feel all the warm gooey feels when they exhibit signs we have been successful to that goal.  And all the heart pains when it seems any of them are not. 

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As an adult, I've noticed that if I and one of my siblings (or their spouses) have a phone conversation, I get quizzed on the topics we talked about.  We never visit  them without my mom present or rarely at least because of distances.  I don't think my mom is trying to be controlling or intrusive but that's what it ends up being.  

I'm thrilled that my adult and minor children have relationships that are separate from me.  I love that they often communicate between themselves and get together to do things that don't involve the whole family!  

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I feel like I have maybe been using the word jealousy differently, and perhaps wrongly?

When I look at the relationships my DH has with his siblings, it makes me feel sad about my relationship and maybe resentful of my siblings for not wanting that.  In my mind that’s jealousy.

But it doesn’t me wish he didn’t have those relationships, or resentful towards his siblings.  I just want it too and sometimes seeing it reminds me of my sadness about not having it.

I’ve posted here that I have struggled with jealousy towards my SIL who has three healthy kids.  Sometimes watching her do something like hang 3 stockings on Christmas Eve can hurt overwhelmingly.  But I never for a second wish my nieces weren’t there.  I just wish I had the same thing.

I will admit that one of the many reasons I am happy to be getting a new niece or nephew this summer is that I think it will be easier to watch her hand four stockings next year.  

So if feeling jealous of someone means you wish they didn’t have the thing you’re jealous of, then I change my answer above.

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26 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I feel like I have maybe been using the word jealousy differently, and perhaps wrongly?

When I look at the relationships my DH has with his siblings, it makes me feel sad about my relationship and maybe resentful of my siblings for not wanting that.  In my mind that’s jealousy.

But it doesn’t me wish he didn’t have those relationships, or resentful towards his siblings.  I just want it too and sometimes seeing it reminds me of my sadness about not having it.

I’ve posted here that I have struggled with jealousy towards my SIL who has three healthy kids.  Sometimes watching her do something like hang 3 stockings on Christmas Eve can hurt overwhelmingly.  But I never for a second wish my nieces weren’t there.  I just wish I had the same thing.

I will admit that one of the many reasons I am happy to be getting a new niece or nephew this summer is that I think it will be easier to watch her hand four stockings next year.  

So if feeling jealous of someone means you wish they didn’t have the thing you’re jealous of, then I change my answer above.

Oh, that makes sense.  And when you put it that way, I am envious of my kids having a special relationship because I would have loved that for myself both growing up and also now as an adult.  I'm thrilled for them, but see what I missed out on.  

 

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I think of jealousy as different than craving something for yourself or feeling wistful about relationships you wish you had or grieving.  Jealousy just connotates certain outward behavior in my head. But I can see how someone else might use those words interchangeably when you talk about it like that.  

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1 hour ago, Kassia said:

I'm an only child and love that my four kids are so close.  There is a big age gap between my older three and my youngest and they live in four different states, but they are all in constant contact electronically.  They are all so supportive and helpful to each other - it really touches me and I treasure those rare times that we are all together.  

One of my kids seems to be the heart of the family - all of his siblings are closest to him, but still close to each other.  

As an only child, I never had any idea the influence siblings have on each other.  It's really amazing.  

This is how things are with my own siblings as adults. We don't live near each other but we having a sibling group on an app and we all chat every day. And we love the rare opportunities we do have to be together.

I also have one sister who is exceptionally good at reaching out and maintaining relationships.

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1 hour ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I feel like I have maybe been using the word jealousy differently, and perhaps wrongly?

When I look at the relationships my DH has with his siblings, it makes me feel sad about my relationship and maybe resentful of my siblings for not wanting that.  In my mind that’s jealousy.

But it doesn’t me wish he didn’t have those relationships, or resentful towards his siblings.  I just want it too and sometimes seeing it reminds me of my sadness about not having it.

I’ve posted here that I have struggled with jealousy towards my SIL who has three healthy kids.  Sometimes watching her do something like hang 3 stockings on Christmas Eve can hurt overwhelmingly.  But I never for a second wish my nieces weren’t there.  I just wish I had the same thing.

I will admit that one of the many reasons I am happy to be getting a new niece or nephew this summer is that I think it will be easier to watch her hand four stockings next year.  

So if feeling jealous of someone means you wish they didn’t have the thing you’re jealous of, then I change my answer above.

I feel the same. I don't begrudge my children anything, but I do often see their relationship with each other and wish that I would have had the kind of family life that fostered such closeness. In a similar way, I see the amount of freedom they have to follow their interests, the types of books and ideas that they're exposed to and think about how much i would've absolutely loved to have those kinds of opportunities when I was growing up. I had a Catholic education that had some classical elements, but an individualized education at home has proven to be a unique experience to say the least! I cant imagine feeling the type of jealousy that implies resentment, though. I've actively worked to encourage their closeness, their intellectual curiosity, etc.

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46 minutes ago, maize said:

This is how things are with my own siblings as adults. We don't live near each other but we having a sibling group on an app and we all chat every day. And we love the rare opportunities we do have to be together.

I also have one sister who is exceptionally good at reaching out and maintaining relationships.

Yes!  My kids are 18-30 and they have a discord group for just the four of them, snapchat streaks, text each other, play a video game together online, etc.  Pre-Covid, they would sometimes travel together and visit each other.  It's really special and it makes me so happy that they have that bond and unconditional love and support.  

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I am thrilled that my kids have a good relationship with each other.  I only hope that lasts forever.

I will say that my kids were adopted, and I took custody when they were 9mos and 12mos old.  They had been raised in separate foster homes up to then.  Once we all arrived home, our process of bonding began.  My eldest took a while to bond to me, but she bonded with her sister right away.  I think that first bond with her sister helped to prepare her to bond with me, so I consider it really valuable.

13+ years later, hearing my girls laugh together is still my favorite sound.

My FOO is pretty good as far as keeping good relationships, so maybe that is why it just makes me happy to see my kids enjoying each other.  I have 5 siblings and they all talk to me, so ...   😛

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I haven't felt that.  We're a rather large family, and my kids are all young adults now.  Sometimes, they feel more comfortable running serious adult problems past each other first, before us.  That actually makes me feel grateful.  I mean, I guess it would be like the cherry on top if they felt comfortable talking with us about those things as well, but at the same time, I completely understand why they might not.   It's a great joy and comfort that they feel such peace about confiding with each other about some really difficult life challenges.  They'll have each other much longer than having us around.  And, I trust and know my kids well enough to know that they'll have good advice from and be good support to each other.

I think my mother had a deep contentment knowing that we three children could confide in each other.  

I will say though, that in hind site, I wish I had also confided more with my mother, and my dad too.  I think they both would have been great about listening and offering healthy suggestions in certain circumstances.  Actually, I'm not sure why I didn't always confide with them except simply that they were my parents and of a different generation.

 

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