7 Powerful Ways to Improve Your Sibling Relationship Today

InsideDo you have a relationship with your sibling? Here are 7 tips to improve your sibling relationship today. God wants restoration in all relationships!

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Today, I’m sharing at Melanie Redd’s site and her series on “Improving Your Relationships.” Melanie has always been a blogger I looked up to, she’s full of God’s wisdom and her posts speak to pertinent issues surrounding us. I’m honored to be a part of her series on improving your relationships.

I don’t have much of a relationship with my sibling. There I said it, and I’m admitting to it.

It’s not that I like how it is. I wish it was different. My desire is for it to change and improve.

When I needed to decide on a topic for this series, I by-passed this; I mean… who really wants to air their dirty laundry?

Somehow my thoughts kept returning to it; I had to write about it because I know I’m not the only one experiencing a broken exchange with a sibling.

I want us to let go of the shame, guilt, and feelings of loneliness when it comes to our siblings and the relationship status that we have with them.

The Reality on Earth

The reason I know not all siblings get along is because this world is broken.

We may have a fascination with Norman Rockwell or Hallmark and their depiction of a family, but the truth is: American families aren’t a reflection of the picture-perfect family.

Many of us don’t have an unblemished family. Some of us might even try to cast visions that we do have that family by the photos we share, but behind closed doors, we’re a mess of dysfunction.

So here I am admitting my dysfunction and the broken sibling connection I have, which I hope can encourage you. Maybe this post could spur you forward and help you look for ways on how to improve yours.

What if you want to have a closer friendship with your sibling?

What if you want to improve your sibling relationship?

Friend, I don’t know how to navigate these chasms, but I’m learning what God says about this!

So if you have a close relationship with your sibling or siblings, I’m envious.

That’s the way it should be, the way God intended.

I don’t know how to improve my relationship because it’s been this way for 25 years.

How does one get closer and more intimate when there aren’t common interests or any other shared threads in life?

How does one get close when geographical distance creates a vast discord, and no one is willing to take the time to text, Facetime, or call?

When Our Sibling Relationships Aren’t Hallmark Perfect

For handfuls of us, the results of a broken world are evident with these key sibling relationships.

For my situation, there wasn’t a falling out or any one specific thing that created the chasm, but rather small steps that created larger gaps over time.

It began in high school… I think. I’m not even sure what happened; I just know that I literally know nothing about my sibling.

Part of me is sick to my stomach admitting this; I mean I sound terrible. The other part of me thinks that my sibling doesn’t know anything about me and isn’t interested really in knowing me either.

It’s complicated friend, isn’t it?

A lot of time has elapsed, and I’m not sure if it will ever be different.

Sometimes I wish I was closer to my sibling, and other times, the hurt is there, so I’d rather not feel the pain. Most times, I push it away, thinking those feelings will lessen or disappear.

Here’s what God’s word has been telling me… these relationships are:

  • Life long
  • Important to God
  • Are hand-picked for us.

God puts a huge emphasis on mending relationships, so we probably should heed advice from the Big Guy.

I realize the benefits that a close connection could have for me as I age and experience loss, but many times, I just can’t see the possibility of it being any different.

Can we improve our sibling relationship?

What I’ve Been Getting Wrong

A lot of improving these relationships begins with forgiveness, humbling ourselves, serving our siblings, and becoming more patient.

We can always point fingers and dish out the pain that someone else has caused us, or we can let “bygones be bygones.”

God doesn’t really care who started it; He just wants restoration.

Restoration brings God glory. The deeper the chasm and pain, the more glory God gets when the relationship is mended.

I understand, friend, that I might not understand the pain your sibling has put you through, but may I encourage you in the Lord?

Jesus’ example of how to love despite how others treat us is a good place to learn about love.

God’s ability to forgive us all day every day can enable us to learn how to forgive our siblings.

(1 Corinthians 3:4-5, NLT).
 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.

(Matthew 18:21-22, NLT).

21 Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone[a] who sins against me? Seven times?”

22 “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven![b]

To get some practical tips for improving your relationship, follow me to Melanie’s site!

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  1. I don’t have a close relationship with my brother, who is my only sibling. It hurts, and I’m not sure what to do about it. But I do know you are right that God wants restoration. Maybe I need to begin praying for ways to reconnect. As in your situation, we never had a falling out or anything, just different priorities and lifestyles. Your post has definitely touched my heart. And it helps to know we’re not the only ones. Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. I am blessed to have wonderful relationships with my two sisters. That’s not to say we haven’t had disagreements. We are human and have our own opinions about things. However, we come together in love and forgiveness.

  3. I think you make such a good point that media and culture can portray families as being close and loving. Yet, as you point out, families and sibling relationships can be challenging and hard. So many have broken, dysfunctional relationships somewhere in their family. I really appreciate your vulnerability in sharing your story. I am sure it resonates with many. I totally agree Most often, “improving these relationships begins with forgiveness, humbling ourselves, serving our siblings, and becoming more patient.”

  4. Great ideas for improving our relationships with our siblings. My brother is almost 8 years older than me. We get along but our just different people because of the age gap.

  5. I always tell my kids that the way they get along with each other helps to teach them how to get along with their future spouse. It really does make a difference.

  6. Beautiful post. Love how you said God doesn’t care who started it, He wants the relationship restored. I have lots of siblings, because my parents were divorced and remarried several times. My twin sister and younger half sister (who I grew up with), we three are very close. We are all married to pastors even though we came from very dysfunctional circumstances. My twin sister and I met a half brother for the first time 9 years ago when our dad passed away. He never knew my dad. But we keep a long-distance relationship up with him. Still, I have 2 other half-siblings where we share one parent that I never talk to or see. One lives really far away and the other is in my area, but we don’t have a relationship anymore. I try to reach out, to no avail.

  7. Close to one brother. Other brother passed away when we were both too busy maybe? They share our history and remember things we don’t. What a blessing when they can answer questions about the past when your parents aren’t here anymore. Great post.

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