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Relationships Sundays

Other Relationships

Dealing with Your Sibling’s Significant Other

In high school, my brother dated a girl who I struggled with. A lot. You’d never know it, but being in the same room was hard at first. My brother is my best friend, and watching him go through a relationship and all of its ups and downs with someone who quite frankly didn’t deserve him was painful and difficult. 


When a family member or friend is dating someone you don’t like, tensions are often high. It’s hard to watch someone you care about date someone who seems so obviously wrong, and it can be hard to know when to keep your mouth shut and when to step in. But ultimately, pushing too hard only results in harming your relationship with your sibling, rather than that with their significant other. 


So how do you deal with it?


It’s not easy. I’ll tell you that right now. Finding and setting appropriate boundaries is a difficult task. The truth is that if you see serious issues in the relationship of someone you care about, you should say something… once. Calmly. Expressing your own observations and explaining your concerns—free of criticism or nastiness. Then let it go. With the exception of safety issues, it needs to be left up to your sibling to decide what happens in their own relationship.


The best way to support your sibling is to love and respect their decisions, and to respect the person they’ve chosen, even if you don’t like them. Do your best to stay civil and if you can find connection points, do it — but if not, at the very least, keep your distance and avoid conflict.


It isn’t worth risking your own sibling bonds over someone they’re dating, particularly when you have no idea how long they’ll last. Be patient and kind, and keep an open mind and closed mouth.

Recommended Movie

The Godfather

Marlon Brando, Al Pacino

Interesting Fact #1

Siblings spend more time with each other than anyone else.


Interesting Fact #2

Siblings tend to be similar in looks and intelligence, but different in personality.


Interesting Fact #3

Younger siblings tend to be more extroverted.


Quote of the day

Siblings: your only enemy you can’t live without.

- Unknown

Article of the day - How to Cope if You Hate Your Sibling's Significant Other

Before my sister met the guy she would eventually marry, she dated this horrible, manipulative, pathological lying, psychopath. As you can see, I was a big fan of him! As were my parents, of course. My disdain for him ran so deep that after a huge blowout with my sister, we didn’t speak for almost three months. Considering how close we had been before this, three months felt like a lifetime. 

While we were all grateful when they finally broke up (he actually dumped my sister which is a joke and a half since he’s the evil one in this scenario), I learned a very valuable lesson in regards to how to act if you can’t stand your sibling’s partner.


1. Keep Your Mouth Shut When You See The Partner

Throwing insults at your sibling’s partner, as much as you might want to, is going to cause a whole boatload of trouble for everyone involved. So do yourself a favor and keep your mouth shut.

2. Spend As Little Time With Them As Possible

If your sibling is having a cookout or party, politely skip it. Just explain you’re better one on one with just them.

3. Remain Neutral When They Have An Argument

Your sibling and their S.O. will fight and your sibling will run to you to complain about it. Instead of taking this as the perfect opportunity to tell your sibling what you really think, remain as neutral as possible.

4. Try To Put A Positive Spin On Things

In fact, I’d suggest you go as far as putting a positive spin on whatever your sibling and their partner fought about.

5. Have An Escape Plan For Your Sibling

At some point, your sibling is going to realize their partner is trash, so have an escape plan ready for them – even if they don’t know about it.

6. Always Be There For Them

Always. No matter how much you hate the dumpster fire they’re dating.

7. When They Ask For Advice Be Honest, But Not Too Honest

If your sibling is thinking about calling it quits with their partner, don’t immediately jump for joy. Instead, offer a small percentage of your feelings. It may be childish, but if you unleash on your sibling just how much you hate their partner, they might go right back to their partner in weird display of defiance.

8. Remind Yourself That We All Have Lessons We Need To Learn

If your siblings partner is so bad that you can’t stand them, then there’s a good chance they don’t have what it takes for a long-term relationship. This, however, is a lesson your sibling needs to learn on their own.

9. Don’t Lecture Your Sibling

Advice is one thing, but lecturing is another thing all together.

10. At Family Dinners, Just Don’t Engage

I’m not suggesting you ignore them, just don’t engage with them. It’s that easy.

11. Never Give Up On Your Sibling

Ever. They’ll comes to their senses. Eventually. (Hopefully.)

12. Talk To Your Sibling’s Friends

Maybe you’re the one in the wrong here… maybe? So talk to your sibling’s friends; see how they feel about the partner.

13. Never Tell Your Sibling They Should Break Up

Again, you just might have them running back into the arms of the partner like they’ve never run back toward anything in their life.

14. Don’t Get Too Involved

If it gets to a point where other family members are involved, because your sibling’s partner is really that horrible, don’t take this as an opportunity to gang up on them. You want to at least make them feel they have one person they can turn to if things get messy.

15. Remain Cool And Calm

No matter the situation or drama that unfolds regarding your sibling and their partner, hold it together. Be the voice of reason – as much as it might pain you.

16. Realize It Can’t Last Forever

Well, nothing lasts forever, not even life… so, you know, there is some hope; morbid hope, but still hope.

17. Try To Have A Heartfelt Chat

If you broach the subject from the angle that you love your sibling and you’re just looking out for them, you’re more likely to get through to them than if you go into it by attacking them.

18. Remember This Isn’t Your Life

Which technically goes back to that whole idea that we all have to learn our lessons on your own.

19. Understand You Can’t Dictate To The Heart

Cliché, but totally true – especially if you’ve exhausted all reasonable attempts to make your feelings and concerns clear.

20. Never Ever Say ‘I Told You So’

But if that day comes that your sibling and her partner, whom you couldn’t stand AT ALL, finally call it quits, be kind. Don’t do the “I told you so” dance or mock your sibling’s pain. Instead, quietly celebrate that the jerk is gone and hope it stays that way.


Question of the day - Do you find it easy to get along with family members’ significant others?

Other Relationships

Do you find it easy to get along with family members’ significant others?