The Sibling Relationship: A Force for Growth and Conflict

The Sibling Relationship: A Force for Growth and Conflict

by Joyce Edward MSSA, BCD


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This book focuses on the role that siblings play in each other's development, on the ways in which they may enrich or cast a shadow over each other's lives, and on how their internalized influence can be recognized and dealt with in the clinical setting. Drawing from observational research and clinical experience, Joyce Edward considers how brothers and sisters, as important attachment figures, may contribute to each other's development of a sound sense of self and to their capacities for establishing satisfying social relationships. Edward also examines how excessive sibling envy, jealousy, and rivalry or physical, sexual or emotional abuse at the hands of a sibling can impede an individual's development and contribute to pathology. Detailed treatment examples demonstrate how essential it is to give siblings a place in the therapeutic situation, to recognize them not only as displacement figures for parents but also as persons who hold an important place in the minds of patients, exerting influence on the way they relate to their mates, their children, their friends, and their therapists.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780765707338
Publisher: Aronson, Jason Inc.
Publication date: 01/19/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 246
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Joyce Edward, MSSA, BCD has practiced psychotherapy and psychoanalysis for more than twenty-five years.She has served on the faculties of the Hunter, Adelphi and Smith Schools of Social Work. She is the co-author of "Separation-Individuation: Theory and Application" and the co-editor of "Fostering Healing and Growth: A Psychoanalytic Social Work Approach" and "The Social Work Psychoanalyst's Casebook: Clinical Voices in Honor of Jean Sanville".

Table of Contents

1 Acknowledgments 2 Introduction Chapter 3 1. Siblings as Developmental Partners Chapter 4 2. The Impact of Culture on Sibling Relationships Chapter 5 3. Siblings in the Families of Today Chapter 6 4. Foster Care, Adoption, and the New Reproductive Technologies Chapter 7 5. Sibling Discord Chapter 8 6. Sibling Sexuality Chapter 9 7. Siblings with Special Needs Chapter 10 8. The Death of a Sibling 11 Afterword 12 Bibliography 13 Index 14 About the Author

What People are Saying About This

Sharon K. Farber

The sibling relationship deserves a more prominent place in psychoanalytic treatment. Joyce Edward’s book is an invaluable contribution, illuminating the complexity of the sibling attachment and its significance as a force for individual development. Encyclopaedic in its scope, this book is broad as well as deep. The reader can read it as if it were a smorgasbord, selecting chapters on cultural considerations, changing family structure, foster care, adoption, new reproductive technologies, sibling rivalry, sibling sexuality, siblings with special needs. All have numerous clinical vignettes. I would urge all clinicians who care about their work to have this book in their professional library.

Henri Parens

With strong scholarship, an astute, well-exercised clinical eye, and an even hand, Joyce Edward opens more richly and widely than I have seen to date the multiple functions, both negative and positive, siblings serve in our lives. She rightly observes that in our clinical and theoretical universe, the topic has too long been marginalized by constructs we have perhaps centered too exclusively, failing to take stock of how siblings enrich or burden us and our patients as they help mold who we and they become. Edward, with much clarity, makes a strong case and contribution to what, in our clinical work, we all need to better take into account. A decidedly worth to have book.

Florence Lieberman

There is a special warmth about this book perhaps because of the author's style and clarity, perhaps because of the subject matter which is so welcome because of long neglect, perhaps it is because most of us will bring personal recollections to the reading of the volume. In any case this is a most welcome and important book for all who work with people. Relationships between siblings are studied from many perspectives both normal and pathological. The lingering influence of death of a sibling, illness or developmental problems is discussed and case studies are presented to demonstrate treatment implications. This is an important book that belongs in the library of all practitioners and in the reference materials in schools of social work. It is even interesting enough to be read by anyone who has a sibling, as well as those who wish they did.

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