PBS Kids GO! It's My Life
Sibling Rivalry: Good Rivalries

Have you ever noticed that sports teams often play their best games against rival teams? In this same way, a little good-hearted competition between a sibling can help you rise to the occasion and achieve more than if that rivalry weren't there.

Let's say that your brother is a top scorer on the soccer team, and you see how happy it makes him to have something he's good at. Well, even if you're not interested in sports, it might encourage you to try out for the lead role in the school play so that you can get that same feeling of accomplishment.

There's nothing wrong with siblings pushing each other a little bit or providing examples for brothers and sisters to follow. But if the rivalry becomes the whole focus of everything, and you feel like your value in the eyes of yourself and your parents will fall if you can't beat out a sibling, then you're headed for unhappiness. Constant competition, especially between people who are supposed to love, help and support one another, is dangerous, and can cause trouble that lasts for years.

Imagine you and your siblings as athletes playing for the same team. A little rivalry among the players can be good, because it can help you play your best. But in the end, it's teamwork and cooperation that will win the game and keep you working smoothly. Show-offs, scene-stealers and ball-hogs aren't good for the team no matter how many points they score.

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