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Twin Sister and Mom Not Speaking

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Hello, I have a family issue going on and I was seeking some help. This conflict is between my twin sister and my mom. They have been completely ignoring each other and not even looking at each other for the past 3 weeks. It is to the point where my sister will not come downstairs so I have to bring food up to her. Let me give you a brief history. It all began around 5 years ago when we were 12 (16 now), so we were in middle school. My sister and my mom had trouble communicating. I can’t specifically remember what they fought about – my family always thought it revolved around my sister’s stubbornness on apologizing to my mom. We would tell her to learn to apologize instead of arguing and if there is anything that my mom is wrong about, then maybe after 30 minutes after the argument when she has become not mad, then consult with her in a respectful manner. That was what we thought was the matter for about 4 years. Even in a mother’s day card last year, she wrote “I’m sorry mom for my stubbornness; I’ll try to fix it up”. However, this was not the case. It became clear this year that my twin sister’s problem was NOT being respectful to my mother. She would mutter “What the heck” under her breath, roll her eyes, shake her head, occasionally scream back at her, and fold her arms. Coming from an Asian family where respect to elders is extremely valued this was angering for my mom. I’ll tell you about what the ultimate fight was that caused this huge brick between my mom and my sister. Three weeks ago, my sister and I woke up really late at around 1 P.M. My mom was furious because we constantly promised to wake up earlier yet we always broke that promise. Usually she was okay with it, but because we constantly did not listen to her, she built up the anger and yelled at us that morning. I came downstairs and she was yelling at me and scolding me and my sister comes downstairs. While my mom was screaming, she poured a bowl of cereal and started to eat. This is already rude in my perspective because it looks like we are totally ignoring her. Then my mom asks my sister why she woke up so late. Then my sister replies with “My alarm clock did not go off.” So my mom, shocked at her blunt answer asked how she got up from school. And my sister straightforwardly answered “My sister wakes me up.” My mom got even madder and asked her how that can be of any excuse and she started to state that we always ignore what she says and never tries to listen. Then my mom asks this question after a few minutes of screaming : What do I if you guys will not listen to me” Of course we remained silent, because it wasn’t a question we could quite think of an answer of. My mom was furious and asked us one more time “What do you think I should do!”” And my sister in a loud tone, after chewing on her cereal yelled “You decide!” And this is after about thirty minutes of my sister’s unsorry and disrespectful manner, and my mom’s madness. So my mom replied with “So are you saying if I hit you, you will be hit”” And my sister replied with “No, because that is completely absurd.” After this my mom lost it and punched my sister twice in the head. And I was an eye witness and I could hands down tell you it was a smack where bruises could be left or jaws could snap. After this, my sister started slapping my mom and screaming and I had to get in the way screaming for them to stop. Afterwards, my sister screams “I’m going to call the police on you!!!” And throws a book at my mother and threatens her. I had to run my sister outside the house and calm down my mom. My sister stayed at the nearby playground for about 4 hours and later came home and they haven’t spoken a word since that day. I asked my sister if she was guilty at all and she was not a single bit. She claims that my mom is a crazy psychopath and she claims that she does not love her. I asked her what the problem with mom is and she says that she is narrow minded and only thinks for herself. Okay, so with that said, here is another bit of information. My mom is a mother of three children : me, my twin sister, and my older brother. We are a great family and looked upon as role model family from other families. I love my mom and this is why this conflict between my sister and my mom is also confusing. She is the only child in the family that has these fights with mom and dislikes her. I have been in every single situation as my sister and I always react differently. I would never speak or act like that to my mom ever. We were both raised the same way and yet we come to totally different conclusions. My mom was actually more rough on my brother and I and we got hit more when we were young and when it came to my twin sister, she was barely hit and whenever my mom and her got into a fight, my mom would go for hours, using examples, trying to communicate with my twin sister, whereas for my brother and I, after a few minutes of talking, she would just tell us to go to our room. However, even going through a rougher side, we always managed to hug it out and become completely normal. However, in my sister’s case, my mom and sister never really “worked it out”. Also, I cannot stress the disrespect level of my sister. Throughout fights I had to scream “Watch your attitude!” constantly! And not only that, it came to the point where we wanted to record her attitude towards mom because she kept arguing that her attitude was “normal”. However, we wanted to do this because it came in a t.v. program on how people could visually be able to see how bad their actions are. And my sister told us to record her. And let me say this, my sister looks at past videos of her on the ipad and sees the way shes talks to me and tells me “Wow I look so bitchy.” However, that Is NOTHING compared to how disrespectful she is to my mom, the way she looks at her, the way she uses sarcasm, the way she shakes her head, rolls her eyes. However, my dad totally denied the recording idea. I told my sister I would never do what she did EVER and say what she said, and she told me that you weren’t in my position before. And yes, I was in the same exact situations as her, but our reactions were ALWAYS different. There would be times when my mom started as being mad at me but later became FURIOUS because of my sister that she even forgot why she was mad at me. My sister always managed to make her more than she was before. Anyways, my brother and I EXTREMELY LOVE my mom. She is not the type of mom who punishes for no reason. She is very wise and I respect her so much. But, my sis does NOT feel this way. In this case, what is going wrong and what do you think should happen for this to be over. I know this is long, however, there are still sooo much behind this, so if there is any questions please feel free to ask me.

Twin Sister and Mom Not Speaking

Answered by on -

A.

Thank you for your detailed letter. The problem here has to do with your mother’s inability to manage her anger. If you step back from the situation for a moment, you’ll realize that the thing igniting the problem is your mother’s inability to cope adequately with normal teenage issues. She punched your sister in the head because she answered the question honestly. Think about that. As you said you were an eyewitness. The question isn’t how to figure out how to have more respect and better behavior, but how do you stop a mother from physically abusing her daughter?

I think you and your sister have to decide what to do. This is a serious issue. No child should be punched in the face by their mother or father for any reason. It is that simple. When you talk to your sister decide what it is you would be willing to do. The most direct way is to talk to your high school guidance counselor. He or she is in the best position to help get counseling for your family.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

Twin Sister and Mom Not Speaking

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). Twin Sister and Mom Not Speaking. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 19, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2015/10/25/twin-sister-and-mom-not-speaking/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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