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How To Gain My Sister's Trust?

We are a big family- I'm the big sister (28years) and I am older than my sister by 12 years. We are not the talking family all the time but we appreciate each other but not to share secrets.

By chance I discovered that my sister is pursued persistently by a guy who we know and she has feelings for him. The problem is that it is not the suitable time for them now to share these feelings. That might change in future when they grow up and socialize more. It also could cause trouble between our families. The question is how can I gain her trust to make her speak to me about this?

Actually I need to be frank with her and let her know that I know, and help her to withdraw from this relationship without causing her pain. But this needs to be without causing an unusual situation with the guy and his family?

Comments for How To Gain My Sister's Trust?

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Building Trust Between Siblings
by: Annie Desantis

Hi,
It is very tricky when families don't approve of a boyfriend, and you have not given any reasons why you think he is unsuitable. Some cultures have very strict ideas about relationships, even to the point of arranged marriages, which can be very successful. But equally there are many young people whose hearts are broken when a family interferes and prevents a relationship.

Firstly, she is very young, and this is unlikely to be a long term relationship. We all have our first love, and we all have to deal with some kind of heart break or ending of a relationship, it is simply part of life. Of course you want to protect her from getting hurt, but in reality you can't.

If you are not close, then you are going to be seen by her as interfering, and that will actually loose any trust you may have.

It would be better for you to gain her trust by spending time with her, sharing stories of your own relationship experiences, and listening to her and understanding her. It would be great for her to have a close relationship with her older sister, you could be a kind of mentor for her. But not if you come in wanting to break a relationship you disapprove of.

Over time, if she raises the issue, you can gently voice your concerns, but very carefully. If she feels you are disapproving, or critical of someone she has developed strong feelings for, you will actually push her into his arms.

You would be better to let the relationship run it's course but be there for her, and build a strong relationship with her, so you are someone she can talk to and share any of her concerns or questions with you.

Feelings for a boyfriend can be very strong no matter how young, but of course a 16 year old does not have much maturity, and can get swept away a little. But that is how we learn about relationships and make decisions about our paths in life. It would be fantastic is she did have the kind of relationship with you that she could trust and look to you for advice, but that only comes with actively building and sharing close times together. It certainly won't be a trust building thing if you come in confronting her and judging the relationship.

Part Two Follows . . .

Building Trust Between Siblings - Part Two
by: Annie Desantis

It is possible that she is aware of misgivings, or knows the family will disaprove, so having a sibling she can talk to or raise concerns herself is really important. You can help her far more by being supportive and listening and only offering advice when she asks for it.

Unfortunately there is not a way to MAKE her listen and trust you, trust is something that develops over time, with deep sharing and acceptance. Trust does not develop from criticism or disapproval, no matter how well-meaning.

You clearly care very deeply for your sister and have her best interests at heart, but often we simply can't protect people from hurts. But we can be there to support them through it, and help them learn and grow. If you concentrate on building a closer relationship with her, then you are holding the door open for her to share her feelings and ask for advice from her big sister.

Good luck,
Annie D :)

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