It’s probably no surprise to you that having a brother (or sister) with haemophilia can have quite an impact on your family. You might have to tag along to lots of doctor’s appointments and sometimes feel like your sibling is getting all of the attention.
While your parents will undoubtedly have to spend extra time ensuring that your sibling’s condition is well managed, it’s important to remember that this doesn’t mean that they care more about them than they do about you. It’s just that there is simply no way to avoid the extra time that managing haemophilia requires.
You may have both good and bad feelings about your sibling and their condition – and that’s okay! It’s not unusual to feel jealous that they seem to always get special treatment from your parents or even guilt that they have the condition and you don’t. You might also feel overprotective of them or upset if they are sick or in the hospital.
Here are some tips for dealing with having a sibling with haemophilia:
- Learn about your sibling’s condition. This way you can better understand what they are going through and how you can play an important role in supporting them.
- Talk to your sibling about their condition and how they feel. While you may be different in many ways, siblings often understand each other best. Because of this, you can be a great source of support for each other, no matter what life throws at you.
- Treat your brother or sister just like any other sibling. While you might sometimes feel like they get all the attention, your sibling probably wishes they were like everyone else.
- Express yourself. Sometimes it’s good to just get things off your chest so you might like to talk to your parents, friends or a counselor about your feelings – both good and bad. Your sibling’s Haemophilia Treatment Centre should also be able to put you in contact with other people who have siblings affected by haemophilia.
Brothers and sisters play a big role in each others lives, so if your sibling has haemophilia, then it is likely to also affect you in many ways. Remember, your sibling’s Haemophilia Treatment Centre can provide you with information on the condition and give you any support that you may need.