Over the years I have treated people who were tormented in extreme ways by siblings. I have been told of sexual abuse in bathrooms, spit in drinks, gun threats, being hit over the head with wooden boards, being pushed down flights of stairs, being held under water and being set up to take the blame for sums the sibling stole. A professor of mine, an expert in personality disorders told me that these people “terrorize their families.” Sometimes one family member is targeted.
Siblings play a great role in shaping us. Childhoods characterized by a disturbed sib’s pattern of covert, overt, psychological or physical transgressions are not uncommon. Mind manipulations may be more damaging than anything for trusting, often younger family members. One’s ability to believe in one’s own judgment and capacity becomes compromised.