Closeness, Distance, and Rapprochement in Sibling Relationships

Miri Scharf, Shmuel Shulman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The chapter discusses the nature of sibling relationships during emerging adulthood and the interplay between developmental processes and sibling relationships. Past unresolved conflicts and continuous rivalry might lead to conflictual and alienated relationships. However, greater maturity and separate residence might induce a kind of rapprochement. Emerging adults' acknowledgment of their need to maintain family bonds, combined with greater emotional and cognitive maturity, might enable them to reconstruct their siblinghood. Family structure, history, personality, and culture contribute to the intensity and quality of sibling relationships. Considering the challenges young people face in the current societal context, siblings are among the closest kin to whom one can turn in stressful conditions. The authors present narratives of emerging adults demonstrating possible factors that influence the sibling bond, the possible influence of culture and more distal variables (sibling relationships of the respondents' parents), and suggestions for future research and implications for practice
Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Emerging Adulthood
EditorsJ. J. Arnett
Place of PublicationNew-York
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Print)978-0-19-979557-4
StatePublished - 2016


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