Sibling Friendships that Last!

posted in: Dads, Mom 0



Want more family peace? Require sibling honor!


Start at birth teaching your children to refer to each other as “best friends.” We practiced that

along with implementing the following principles in our homes when our children were very

young. And now that they are reaching adulthood, they still prefer each other above all other

friendships. It’s never too late to make sibling friendship a priority.


Here are some family habits for making brothers and sisters best friends:

• Have zero tolerance for unkind speech in your home. And actions, attitudes and body

language are just like words. Bring any unkindness to the attention of your children

immediately. Have them repeat the action or words with a correct tone and attitude

before moving on with the day.

• Working on words and attitudes with the oldest children has a trickle down effect for

the rest. Call your older children to rise to the responsibility of mentoring the younger

ones. Younger siblings naturally reciprocate what they see and experience.

• Cover the topics of love languages, spiritual gifts and temperaments as a family.

Understanding differences helps siblings celebrate each other and forgive besetting sins.

• Require repentance, forgiveness and restoration. “I’m sorry” is bumped to the more

vulnerable “Will you forgive me for _______ ?”

• When two children are angry with one another, don’t prefer each other, or the

relationship has been weakened over time, plan to have them spend more time

together. Limit outside activities and influences until their hearts are right. Require them

to do something extra kind for one another and use kind words. Ask the older sibling to

be responsible to plan an event, help with school, or bake with the younger sibling so

they have extra opportunities to strengthen the relationship.

One thing that really helped our families was reading the book Making Brothers and Sisters Best

Friends, by Sarah and Harold Mally, out loud. We had our children make a “lapbook” about

laying down his or her rights, being willing to “lose in the good fight,” and other major themes

from the book. Later, we reread the book since the youngest children were too small to

understand it well the first time through. When two siblings are vying for the first or best we

ask, “Who would be willing to lay down his rights?” Having taught what this means in a time of

non-conflict, almost always someone graciously lays down what he deserves for the sake of a

brother of sister. It is considered a mark of honor.

Also, we frequently say, “You wouldn’t speak to so-and-so that way. Why would you treat your

sister/brother, who is your best friend that way?” Family peace in founded in strong sibling

relationships. It’s our prayer that our children will esteem and prefer one another all the days

of their lives.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *