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How to help a relationship between half-siblings?

How to help the relationship between half-siblings work is an extremely frequent question, whether they are in the same space interacting daily, or they meet on some special occasions.

Whatever the conditions, one of the greatest desires is that they have a good relationship and thus help family ties to be stronger and at least not loaded with so many problems. Here are some tips to help the relationship work:

1. Avoid the distinction of treatment according to blood difference

In order to have an environment of respect and empathy we must create equal treatment, something very common is that some of the brothers, due to the little genetic resemblance may feel uncomfortable or accepted. To avoid these types of situations we must make it clear that they have the same value, and will be treated and loved in the same way. Although they will have the knowledge of being half-brothers, it is not necessary that they repeat it at every moment.

2. Develop agreements and strategies

Many times when starting to relate as half-siblings, fears may arise. It is not only about finding out what scares them but about working on it, both individually and as a team, establishing agreements, especially communication.

If you are afraid that your bond will break or they are not so united, it is good to establish that it is forbidden, such as not saying what bothers you, etc. to create strategies that avoid such discomfort, and it may be that, if it causes them problems to talk about it, write it, draw, etc., that the imagination flies. Above all, it is important that the commitment is not forgotten, it tries to comply with every agreement to the letter, so only accept what you think will be possible, try not to create impossible scenarios, if you can put it on paper so as not to forget the agreements.

3. Provide individual spaces

This is a fundamental point. It provides individual living spaces for children. Many times, even as adults, it has happened to us that it is difficult for us to express points of view in front of everyone. In the case of children sometimes they only have enough confidence with their trusted adult and not with their half-brother. This trust will be built little by little. In the meantime prepare some time to be only with them.

Although they show good communication, it can also help them feel closer to you. Go out to do some activity that you like, have ice cream, go for a walk, etc. Try to make it outside the home, because then there will be more freedom and they will have once a week, every fifteen days or a month a space only for them, as agreed.


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4. Make a weekly dialogue table

Once a week it will be important to sit down specifically to talk about anything that bothers you, such as the problems of the week, what was not noticed but could cause discomfort to the members, how they feel emotionally, and how was their week, obviously there will also be space to talk about everything pleasant.

Try to be a listener and mediator. Don’t directly give the solution, guide them in the conversation so they learn to solve on their own, and a fundamental rule is not to interrupt yourself when you’re talking.

5. Avoid forcing them into friendship

We must learn to differentiate between desire and reality. Wishing for half-siblings to have a true friendship is something every parent will want, yet a friendship is a construct. It will not happen overnight. It requires time, respect and many other factors, among the most important is to agree in the moral field, and find similar or thematic tastes through which they can engage in conversation or perform activities.

You always have to keep in mind that it is possible that, even if they are half brothers, they do not have so much in common or are not so comfortable with each other. Trying to force a friendship can be completely counterproductive. That is why more than trying to have a friendship, it begins by promoting a good environment, with respect and communication.

Remember that the good relationship between half brothers is built in everyday life. It is about taking small steps, first of all, we recommend you have a lot of patience.

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