Your most vivid memories of you and your siblings may be fighting over who gets to sit in the front seat of the car or who gets the biggest glass of juice. What you may be surprised to discover is that this somewhat meaningless bickering could have prepared you for future romantic relationships. It turns out that the type of relationship you had with siblings of the opposite sex can have an impact or the quality and longevity of your adult romantic relationships.
Teenage romance; a result of close sibling interactions.
You may need to thank your sibling for the romantic relationship you had with your teenage sweetheart. According to a study conducted by Susan E. Doughty and colleagues at the Pennsylvania State University, mix-gender sibling intimacy is a positive predictor of romance in later relationships.
The study involved interviews with working and middle-class adolescents. In the first interview, the participants were asked about their sibling relationship intimacy, conflicts they may experience with their siblings, and issues to do with control. Two years later, the same subjects reported on the role that intimacy played in their romantic relationships.
So if you remember having a great summer romance during your adolescent years don’t forget to thank your brother or sister.
Your birth order may be affecting your relationships.
If you have an older sibling of the opposite-sex, you may be more likely to have rewarding interacts with strangers of the opposite sex, according to a study published in the “Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.”
The study involved unstructured interactions of 40 mixed sex pairs. There participants were undergraduates who each had a sibling of the opposite sex. The study looked at the various possibilities of birth order; for example, a firstborn man was paired with a first born woman, and so on. Each pair was videotaped during their initial meeting, and they then completed a questionnaire about their interactions.
The results showed that last born men talked nearly twice as long and asked more questions than firstborn men. The also evoked more gazes and verbal reinforcers, and received more self-reported liking from the female they were paired with. Last born women were more likely to initiate the interaction, and they also made their male partners smile more, than first born women.
Your birth order may be affecting your relationships with the opposite sex in more ways than you realize. If you are the youngest in the family, you may find it easier to woo the opposite sex.
Sibling favoritism and your relationship.
Siblings who reported equal treatment of themselves and their siblings had higher self-esteem and less romantic relationship distress, reported a study conducted by Amy J. Rauer and Brenda L. Volling in the Department of Psychology at the University of Michigan. On the other hand, if siblings experienced different parental affection, all of the siblings, even if they were the favorite, reported more negative models of self and greater romantic relationship distress.
The study involved a survey that was undertaken by 200 young adults.
The results indicated that early within-family dynamics, and the treatment of siblings by their parents can have an impact on the way later relationship function.
Having more siblings may mean less chance of divorce.
A new nationwide study reveals that the more siblings you have, the less likely you are to get a divorce. Each additional sibling a person has reduces the likelihood of divorce by two percent (up to seven siblings).
“It wasn’t the difference between being an only child and having siblings that was significant. ― We expected that if you had any siblings at all, that would give you the experience with personal relationships that would help you in marriage,” said Donna Bobbitt-Zeher, co-author of the study and an assistant professor of sociology at Ohio State’s Marion campus. “But we found that the real story appears to be how family dynamics change incrementally with the addition of each sibling. Having more siblings means more experience dealing with others, and that seems to provide additional help in dealing with a marriage relationship as an adult.”
The study used data from the General Social Survey, which involved interviews with about 57,000 adults from across the United States at 28 points between 1972 and 2012.
The results showed that each additional sibling up to about seven provided additional protection from divorce.
If you find that you enjoy a fulfilling and romantic relationship with your partner in life, you may want to give your brother or sister a call and thank them.