Many times, children create conflicts with siblings to get their parents’ attention. To a child, a parent’s love represents safety, security and power. When a child feels a sibling may be more important, jealousy and competitiveness take precedence over kindness and patience, and sibling rivalry emerges.
Additional problems can also arise in step-sibling relationships because the child has to adjust to a new parent, new siblings and sometimes a new home. Often, there’s a shift in the child’s position in the family. They might move from the oldest to the middle child and no longer have the most privileges or move from the youngest to the oldest child with no preparation for the additional responsibility.
With step-siblings it’s important that both parents reassure the children that their value has not changed, even though their position in the family may have.