Big Kids

It's official: having sisters makes you a better person

Ah sisters, one minute you're fighting about who stole whose lipstick and the next you're best friends. 

Well not only does having a sister give you access to a whole other wardrobe, but it's also been proven to make you a better, kinder person. 

Makes all that stealing and beheading of Barbie dolls feel worth it. 

Researchers at the Brigham Young University have found that having a sister helps you to develop social skills like communication, compromise and negotiation. 

Head researcher, Alex Jensen points out that the presence of sisters eases feelings of being  lonely, unloved, guilty, self-conscious and fearful.”

“What we know suggests that sisters play a role in promoting positive mental health,” Jensen said, speaking to Motherly“And later in life they often do more to keep families in contact with one another after the parents pass.”

Sisters, according to the research, also promote positive social attributes such as compassion and generosity. 

Even fighting has it's benefits, as leader study author Laura Padilla-Walker shared in an interview

"Even if there is a little bit of fighting, as long as they have affection, the positive will win out," she explained. "If siblings get in a fight, they have to regulate emotions. That's an important skill to learn for later in life."

It works for boys as well. The study found that men who grow up with sisters tend to be better at communicating with women later in life, and vice versa. 

“Some research suggests that having a sibling who is a different gender from you can be a real benefit in adolescence,” Jensen explains. “Many of those sibling pairs become closer during the teen years because they become good sources of information about the opposite sex.”

Why is this? Girls are more open to communication and positive reinforcement, leading to strong and healthier family bonds. 

So you have a lot to thank your sister for- not just that jumper you stole ages ago (it looks better on you anyway). 

Search results for
View all