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Sibling starts to spiral whenever I spend time with them

Community Member

My sibling is diagnosed with CPTSD, anxiety and depression.


It’s been an ongoing situation where they spiral into the same really traumatic and negative topics that usually result in talking about ending their life.

This can go on for hours and they get very aggressive when I don’t engage (or engage the way they want me to) or when I try and move away from the conversation to stop the spiral. 

Unfortunately, yelling is a major trigger for my own traumatic reactions and yelling is a theme of these conversations. I have tried everything I can, but the conversation usually ends up in my sibling being super defensive and even more aggressive.


Is there any advice from people who have been in similar situations?

1 Reply 1

Community Member

Hi Ashii,


Thank you for sharing. It sounds like these are some very difficult conversations. For the most part it is difficult to know what to suggest as it depends on the conversation and the person. I guess the best thing I can say is to try and really connect with them and feel what they're feeling which is a lot tougher than it sounds. Alot of the times as family our protective instinct is to patch things up and try to make things better as fast as possible. But there is a lot of merit in simply sitting with that person and letting them vent/offload on you. I find personally that I prefer if a friend or family member simply sits there and genuinely listens to my experience. At the very least it would avoid a situation where both of you are yelling. I hope that helps a bit.


There is also a good website which provides support and resources for those with complex trauma. It is https://blueknot.org.au/.