The situation is new – taking care of Mom or Dad – but sometimes, the old story still dictates family interactions. It can become especially apparent when siblings try to assign jobs or make decisions together. Old family roles are rekindled….Who is the ‘responsible kid’ in the family? Who leads the pack and is dominant, and who is considered flighty or unavailable? The challenges may be escalated further when one sibling lives close to the parent and the others are physically distant.
Unspoken Expectations and Asking for Help
A large part of sibling tensions can arise from lack of communication. One huge step that any caregiver can take is asking for help, and specific help at that. Many times, a brother or sister may be disappointed in another sibling for not contributing more, but has never communicated the need or where there are gaps to fill in the care.