Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Troubles with sister. Troubles with family.

Community Member
My sister and I have a very conflict filled relationship. She is my younger sister and there is just us two siblings. Growing up, we had a very difficult childhood with my parents who have major issues of their own. As the older sister, I protected and supported her so that she didn't bear the brunt of the issues with my parents. She was able to be denial that there were any problems at all until she was 18 and then she wasn't able to deny it any longer and that's when the problems started with her. She has serious anger management issues and we both have very different coping styles. I blow up quickly and then I get over it and I try to find a solution to forgive and get on with things. Her style is to be non-confrontational but very passive-aggressive and she holds a grudge for a long time. We had an incident last night where we had an argument over the way that she was talking to me. I felt like she was being very rude and disrespectful in the way that she was talking to me. She took that as major criticism and escalated so quickly to the point where she lost it and started to put up her fists as if she was going to fight me. I was like "Whoa, calm down and talk to me", but she had already escalated. She was out of control so I grabbed her car keys so that she would not be driving in that state and said "Take a walk or stay here and calm down but you're not driving". She then scratched and pulled at me to get her keys back and when I pushed her away, she struck on the head and I received a minor head injury that was bleeding. The police were called by her, because she was threatening me to "go ahead and take out an AVO, I don't care." I didn't even want the police involved, although she has called them in the past because she thinks that they need to be there. She has regular emotional ups and downs and it can be quite difficult to deal with her. She is currently seeing a counsellor and has seen her GP and two other counsellors in the past. Every time she has seen her counsellor, she comes back even angrier and lashes out verbally and emotionally at me. I just feel so helpless and frustated with the situation. There is never a dialogue with her to make peace and work out a resolution, only ranting about how I destroy her life. This can go on for two weeks and longer. I feel so frustrated and alone. My parents will not intervene as we are adults and my dad says that I should watch out for her, maybe she's tired or stressed and I should allow for that.
2 Replies 2

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Vetiver,

I am glad you are talking about this, I reckon you will get some ideas and support here. It's sad to hear how frustrating this must be, I am guessing you live with your sister and your parents?

As you know recovery can take time and it can be 3 steps forwards, 2 steps back. I guess you can try and give her space when you know she is not feeling good. You could stay focused on your self and do what you think is right without expectation of your sister. I hope this gets better for you soon.


Community Member

Hi Vetiver,

I'm sorry to hear about the fractured relationship you have with your sister. You and your sister sound like very different people, which makes having an amicable relationship even more challenging. It sounds as though you have been very good to her, in that you have protected her and watched out for her a lot in the past. You, as the more level-headed sister, are able to think things through rationally. It must be so hard to reach agreements or resolve issues with your sister, due to her lack of open communication, passive-aggression, and issues with anger.

To be honest, I can't think of any useful specific advice. I just wanted to reply to you, because I feel empathy for you in this situation. My sister and I get along okay, and we don't have any major issues per se. However, we are both really different in terms of our personality and ways of dealing with things, so this can make it hard for us to see eye-to-eye. She is two years younger than me, but we are at similar stages of life, on a surface level.

I hope your sister keeps seeing her counsellor and GP. Try to give your sister as much space as practical. If she is angry or emotional, giving her space will reduce the likelihood of you getting hurt, both emotionally and physically.

Good luck and best wishes,