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Dear Stavroula

Ask Stavroula: I Have the Idea That my Sister Wants my Boyfriend…

Dear Stavroula,

I am 24 years old and have a sister who is one-and-a-half years older than me. We have a strange “love and hate” relationship.

There are times in our lives when we have a very loving relationship – we go out together and talk to each other about everything – and there are times when we don’t talk for days, usually after a big fight that she almost always starts and which is usually caused by her jealousy.

I dare not get a nice outfit because she will go get the same one and then demand that I cannot wear it when we go out together – if it turns out that we want to go together to the same event!

This year I enrolled in a Latin class at a school next to my house and she came too, even though she doesn’t like Latin. She generally wants to do whatever I do. Although she has been jealous of me ever since I was born, I never thought to cut her off, because she is my blood and I love her. But lately she has enraged me with her behavior.

For the past two months I have been in a relationship with a boy I love and who feels the same way about me. My sister, who is alone at this time, has been coming day and night to my house ever since she met my boyfriend. We live in separate apartments that our parents bought us, but in buildings that are unfortunately right next to each other.

She comes uninvited, ostensibly to bring us food, or just to vent about her life, or to watch movies; she creates various excuses for being there. So far I have been patient and have not said anything to her about my frustration.

Last but not least, when she comes, she is all dolled up, and she sits next to my boyfriend, often it in a provocative way. She touches him at random when she talks, flatters him and puts me down – albeit with humor, for sure, but I feel it. I have the idea that she wants my boyfriend but I am not sure. What to do?

Yota

Dear Yota,

From what you write to me, I understand that your relationship with your sister was never perfect and you might have to talk to your parents and maybe some relatives or friends you trust and who know both of you. They may help you understand what is really going on and why your relationship is not working as it should, without competition and jealousy. If you understand where the problem is, you might be able to fix it, or at least improve your relationship.

If you feel your sister is going after your boyfriend, the first thing you should do is talk to him and ask him how he feels when your sister is with you. That way, you will understand if your sister is actually trying to seduce him, because there is a possibility that you may have misunderstood her behavior.

Sometimes when we are in love, feelings of jealousy that can be caused by insecurity arise within us. That’s why it’s important to talk to your boyfriend, if you trust him. If he tells you that he doesn’t feel strange about the way your sister approaches him, then you should probably look inside to find out what is causing you insecurity and overcome it.

Of course, the fact that your sister wants to be with you all the time is something you have to deal with. She may be afraid of losing you and thus is trying to continue to be a part of your life. So talk to her and ask her to cut down on her visits.

Explain to her that you are at the beginning of a relationship and that you need alone time with your boyfriend to get to know each other better in order to bond. Reassure her that you will always love her that she will always be a valuable part of your life.

But if your boyfriend conveys to you that he feels strange or uncomfortable with your sister’s behavior, that he feels she is throwing herself at him, then things get tricky. Try to talk to her honestly about your feelings, without verbal attacks or insults. Let her know that her behavior will result in your relationship being damaged and she will be left alone.

For a while, you might have to get her out of your life. Make sure you mainly meet at your boyfriend’s house or outside your home.

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