Don’t make comparisons between two siblings. It can set up sibling rivalry in the future and cause parents unnecessarily worry in the present. My daughter Kali has twin boys and they are developing at different rates. They both crawled and walked around the same age but one twin talks a mile a minute and the other does not talk. This has caused parental anxiety that is not necessary, as a speech therapist told Kali. The talking twin is talking for the non-talking twin. He just needs more one to one time and some exercises that the therapist showed Kali and her husband.
But in the future, as siblings age, these comparisons of this can leaded to sibling wars 40 years in the future. Parent’s recall and say out loud, who got the first tooth, who walked first, who rode a bike first or who did better in school -subconsciously pitting siblings against each other.
As siblings grow up and reach midlife, after they have raised their own families, baby boomer siblings’ come back together. Midlife siblings celebrate family rituals, socialize together and critically care for aging parents. Deep-rooted sibling rivalry from early comparisons between siblings can cause estrangement begun in early childhood. Deep down in the sibling psyche, these feelings of sibling rivalry have sprung from comparisons the parents made decades ago.
For anyone who has read East of Eden, or seen the iconic James Dean film you say see the brutal battles that play out later in life from early sibling comparisons. This unintended consequence of early parenting creates alienated siblings who can’t form that sibling team to socialize together or work as a team to manage aging parental care.
So calm your parental present and give your young siblings a future without sibling’s rivalry- don’t make comparisons.