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I don't know how to handle her anymore! Help?!

I feel like a fool for talking about this (and I'm sorry if it seems long-winded), but I really need some advice. First off, I'm 26 and I only have one sibling: my little sister is 19. She and I got along really well for years, but in the past couple years her behavior has driven me crazy. I chalked it up to her being so much younger than me, but really, it's got to be more than just that.

Here are the big issues I'm having:
~ She used to admire me as her big sis, look up to me, ask me for advice, and compliment me. Now all she does is put me down or make fun of me - even if it's "in jest", it's clear she means what she says.
~ She's severely depressed and hypochondriacal. She is on medications I can't even count anymore, and this stems from living with my dad, who thinks there is a prescription for every annoyance.
~ She is embarrassing. Her Facebook statuses are ALWAYS something about how terrible her life is, how life has just crapped all over her basically. (Which is absurd! She has two jobs, her own apartment, a paid-off car, health insurance, and money in the bank. I can't even claim to have all of those things!) It mortifies me to see her posting these things to all of the same people I know and associate with. Even if someone tries to make her feel better, she'll argue with them - "no, you're wrong, there is no bright side to my complaint", essentially.
~ She tells me (and everyone we meet) that my kids are soooo annoying. That HURTS. They are well-behaved, intelligent, hilariously funny little kids. And they're toddlers for pete's sake! I don't know one other person who would describe them as annoying. Not to mention, she sees them one day a week for maybe an hour or two!
~ She tries to upstage me and make me feel terrible in every situation. I'm in college full-time, but if this gets brought up in conversation, she immediately points out that she's in college full-time too, AND in an honor society, AND works two jobs - she literally says this stuff OUT LOUD, with emphasis on the "AND I work two jobs too!" (I'm a stay at home mom. So I guess that makes me a failure in her eyes?)
~ After all of the whining she does about everything, she doesn't have time to give a rat's patootie about anyone else. So when she asked me how I was the other day, I was shocked. I replied that I was "Great! No complaints, except maybe the homework I'm racing to finish because I procrastinated so long!" (chuckle). Her response to that? *rolling eyes* "Whiner!"......SERIOUSLY?!!?

Anyway, I used to take this stuff with a grain of salt, but it's become too much. It doesn't help that my own life has taken a massive hit in the last 2 years (my husband lost his job and we lost everything in the process), but I don't go around talking to everyone about that. I don't feel like I can handle my sister's attitude and insults anymore, when I'm trying so hard to repair my own life and keep my chin up. My parents don't seem to think there's anything wrong or abnormal, or that I have any reason to be upset.

What do you guys think? :(

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 5:01 AM on Jun. 2, 2011 in Relationships

Answers (11)
  • Get some new friends and quit worrying about your pain in the neck sister?

    Answer by blackisbetter at 5:05 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • Sounds like she's insulting you to make herself feel better. You're doing great and she's so wrong because the AND should be yours.. as in "..AND I do it all while raising 2 kids." Her behavior probably has nothing to do with you, she just can't see past herself right now. I'd distance myself and encourage her to get some therapy.

    Answer by Ashes0813 at 5:14 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • I know this is family but avoid her as much as you can, don't inclued her in anything new unless she ask. When she gets attitude with you, you need to ask her why she is so nasty towards you. Let her know that she will lose her only sister for acting out. And when she is doing the AND.. thing, ask her "and how is that working out" because it seems to me that her life is just upside down. Or say "says the one who complans about everything". You need some come backs, or you need to just leave her be, and worry about your family!

    Answer by MsVanqueOsg at 5:41 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • Seriously, you can't choose family. You can't change her or make it better with words. You're going through enough crap right now. Telling her off might sting for a moment though she will be prepared for the next run in. Avoid her and the issues. When you need to deal with her call attention to her bad behavior. Say, "oh must you insult me" or " perhaps your priorities are different than mine"
    I would state my feelings loud and show her. I'm betting her life isn't what she expected. She does envy you in some ways, perhaps its the kids. Also on the facebook thing, I had a friend that acted up on face book. I right clicked all her posts and removed them. One day she said something. I told her "hey people I know see that"
    Start speaking up though realize you can't change someone overnight.

    Answer by chgomom at 6:28 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • she obviously has some issues and is using you to make herself feel better.. in reality she's probably jealous that through all your drama in your own life you seemed to come out unscathed and basically smiling, I think she envies you for that. If she has no relationship with her mom, she could be viewing you more as a mother figure as well, and seeing that she is struggle she may feel abandonment issues.
    what to do? Not much, let her go through her phase and try to just ignore the rants on FB. If she starts getting into you, then step up and say that it's not appreciated. Give her a chance to grow up a little, and I bet she'll come around in a few years, until then try to lay low.

    Answer by xxhazeldovexx at 7:35 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • Simple... cut off all ties with her for awhile, maybe she will realize how much she misses you when she doesn't have you as her ounchng bag anymore! If you MUST be around her for family events etc.. I'd never stoop to her level. I would simply take pitty on her, tell her, LISTEN, i am sorry you are so unhappy with your life, but i love mine and you need to grow up. Just ignore her, smile ad walk away, when she does not get a reaction from you, she will get tired of tryng. Good luck and maybe when she grows up she will see what she is missing!

    Answer by JenzAmomOf2 at 9:52 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • I think she needs counseling! Especially if she thinks that 'life crapped on her' and she won't look at the positives that are going for her. She may have self-esteem issues, or maybe she does not like or love herself, so to make herself feel better and be a "somebody" she directs her anger at you and takes her issues out on you. She could be jealous of you, you are older, married, have kids.... so if she does not have those things that may make her 'target' you as well. If it were me I would be very tempted to say "Whatever! Why don't you stop acting like a b*tch?! I am sick of all of your insults and put-downs. Until you can grow up and stop acting like a spoilt brat I refuse to have anything more to do with you!" I'd also strongly urge her to seek counseling.

    Answer by MizLee at 11:13 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • I think you need to straight up tell her exactly what you just told us. She needs to hear it. She probably has no idea how she makes you feel. She needs to be knocked off her pedestal.

    Answer by JackieGirl007 at 11:33 AM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • Thank you everyone. I can't tell you how much the responses mean! Just knowing I'm not crazy for feeling this way really helps. I've stopped contacting my sister through text or anything like I normally do; I'm not going to go out of my way to be in her life anymore. If she really wants to be in mine, hopefully she'll start treating me differently. And if not, one of these days, I *will* tell her exactly how she comes across to people. We were talking about someone else recently who is condescending and insulting to everyone she talks to - maybe if I compare my sister to that person, she'll get the point! :-/

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 1:43 PM on Jun. 2, 2011

  • I think everyone so far has hit it on the head. She seems jealous and envious...and has to belittle you to make herself feel better. I think distancing yourself from her for a while will help. Remember, she is only 19, and still trying to "grow up". I think you are already, just chalk a lot of it up to being young and inexperienced....Eventually, she will learn, maybe by the time she is 26! But, it may take her a bit longer, since she is the youngest. If you decide to not distance yourself, then at some point I would address the issues that bother you with her. She, of course will deny them...but it will make you feel better to let her know how the things that she says make you feel!

    Answer by Lynda-Lou at 1:17 PM on Jun. 3, 2011

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