Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hey, that's my shirt! Sibling conflict harms trust and communication between adolescent siblings

Date:
April 6, 2010
Source:
University of Missouri-Columbia
Summary:
Whether it is about who gets to ride shotgun or who wore a shirt without asking, siblings fight. While seemingly innocent, a recent study reveals that certain types of fights can affect the quality of sibling relationships. Researchers identified two major types of conflict among adolescent siblings and found that conflicts about personal space have a negative impact on trust and communication between siblings.

Whether it is about who gets to ride shotgun or who wore a shirt without asking, siblings fight. While seemingly innocent, a recent study at the University of Missouri reveals that certain types of fights can affect the quality of sibling relationships. MU researchers identified two major types of conflict among adolescent siblings and found that conflicts about personal space have a negative impact on trust and communication between siblings.

"The first conflict area we found includes issues about physical and emotional personal space, such as borrowing items without asking and hanging around when older siblings have friends over," said Nicole Campione-Barr, assistant professor in the MU Department of Psychological Sciences. "When these issues were present, both younger and older siblings reported less trust and communication. The second conflict area includes equality and fairness issues, such as taking turns and sharing responsibilities. These conflicts had no impact on relationship quality."

While both younger and older siblings reported personal space conflicts, older siblings reported these conflicts more frequently, according to the researchers. This suggests that older siblings are more sensitive to personal space issues and may indicate the beginning of their separation from the family.

The findings of this study can help parents, psychologists and other individuals who work with teens understand the impact that conflicts can have on sibling relationships. For parents, Campione-Barr suggests setting up family boundaries to reduce sibling conflicts about personal space.

"Parents need to establish and enforce family rules about respecting privacy, personal space and property," Campione-Barr said. "However, when sibling conflicts occur, there needs to be negotiations between siblings. Previous research tells us that parents should step aside because they have a tendency to make matters worse."

In the study, the researchers interviewed and surveyed pairs of siblings, ages 8-20. This study is the first to examine types of sibling conflict between adolescent age children. Research has traditionally focused on sibling relationships among younger children. Campione-Barr is conducting a follow-up study to examine the impact that conflicts have on the adjustment of adolescents as individuals.

The study, "Who Said You Could Wear My Sweater? What Adolescent Siblings Fight About and How it Affects Their Relationship," recently was published in Child Development. It was co-authored by Judith Smetana in the Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology at the University of Rochester.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Missouri-Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nicole Campione-Barr, Judith G. Smetana. "Who Said You Could Wear My Sweater?" Adolescent Siblings' Conflicts and Associations With Relationship Quality. Child Development, 2010; 81 (2): 464 DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2009.01407.x

Cite This Page:

University of Missouri-Columbia. "Hey, that's my shirt! Sibling conflict harms trust and communication between adolescent siblings." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100405122313.htm>.
University of Missouri-Columbia. (2010, April 6). Hey, that's my shirt! Sibling conflict harms trust and communication between adolescent siblings. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100405122313.htm
University of Missouri-Columbia. "Hey, that's my shirt! Sibling conflict harms trust and communication between adolescent siblings." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100405122313.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The brains of artists aren't really left-brain or right-brain, but rather have extra neural matter in visual and motor control areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins