You Were Always Mom's Favorite!: Sisters in Conversation Throughout Their Lives
NEW YORK TIMES BESTELLER
Conversations between sisters reveal a deep and constant tug between two dynamics—an impulse toward closeness and an impulse toward competition. It takes just a word from your sister to start you laughing, or to summon up a past you both share. But it also takes just a word to send you into an emotional tailspin. For many women, a sister is both a devoted friend and a fierce rival.
Wise and witty, You Were Always Mom’s Favorite! will leave you with a profound new understanding of the unique and precious sister bond, as well as provide practical advice that will open up communication, dispel tensions, and make a vital connection even stronger, deeper, and more resilient.
help.” She added, “That was my job in life—to take care of my sister.” This woman, like Walters, had responsibility for protecting her sister even though she was younger. In many families, older or more able sisters protect younger or less able ones, because they were told to or because they took it upon themselves. But sometimes they resist that role. And sometimes one sister expects another to watch out for her, and is puzzled, hurt, or resentful when she won’t. For example, a woman recalled
explain, “That’s my parents and my sister Naomi. She’s eight years older than I am.” When they look more closely they see how much younger one of the standing women is than the other. The question, “Which one is you?” is telling. Many sisters ask it of themselves. They can hardly think about who they are without thinking about how they are like or unlike their sisters. A sister is the person you might have been but aren’t, by choice or by chance. The photo also dramatizes the enormous
siblings in their joint stance toward a parent, or with one parent in a stance taken toward the other parent. For example, a woman told me, “My sister got spanked more. If my mom spanked me or yelled at me, I would call my dad. And he’d play the part of my ally versus my mom instead of playing my mom’s ally.” A common alignment is the one between Luci and Lynda Johnson, an alliance of sisters in their dealings with one or both parents. And a common way of creating and reinforcing that alignment
remained in their mother’s home after their mother had passed away. Judy had a responsibility to do her share of the work at their parents’ home, and she wanted to share in the excavation of memories they were uncovering with their parents’ possessions. It was a once-in-a-lifetime activity, and it couldn’t be put off. But her daughter called daily, begging her to come. In the end, the heartstrings of Judy’s alignment with her daughter could bear no more pulling, and she left her sisters to help
has to decide whose lap to throw it in. If you tell something to one sister and ask her not to tell another, she has to betray one of you. Honoring your request not to tell means betraying the sister kept in the dark. Violating the request and telling that sister means betraying your confidence. Yet for many reasons sisters do put each other in this position. For example, Allie has two sisters as well as a son. One of the biggest challenges she faces in her life is that her son has problems with