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What to Do When Older Sister Is Mean to Younger Sister

Question

Our older daughter continues to be a source of hurt to her younger sister. They are three years apart and both teens. They are both well liked in the community, praised by teachers, active in church and civic organizations and taught responsibility with chores and part time jobs.The older one will do things like promise to watch a movie on a weekend and the younger one lets her choose the movie and time and sits expectantly all evening. The big sis will sit in her room and say she's coming, but never show up or procrastinate until it really is too late to start the evening. She promises to make it up the next weekend and the younger sister is always optimistic but then sits alone once again fighting back tears when she never shows up. This situation or one similar has played out dozens of times each year but now has expanded to what we see as a new level of supreme selfishness to the point of causing intentional pain. The now college student will show up at church and take both her friends and her sister's friends to dinner and leave her behind. They will even all be at the same church event and big sis will pile everyone in the car and tell her sister she can't come. Other times the young one won't know about the event until it's posted on social media: a double in-your-face slam. The lowest point was when they were all posing for a spontaneous photo and she told her sister to stand aside and not be in it. To all outwardly appearances, the older sister talks and walks with the values we taught her, but at home she is the most narcissistic individual we've encountered. How someone could be that intentionally hurtful is beyond us. Since calling her out each time she does this seems to do no good, and she is in college, pays for her own phone, on scholarship with a part time job, we really don't know how else to influence her that the Golden Rule applies in the home as well.

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