March 26, 2020


Dear Nikki,

I’m eleven and my nine-year-old sis wants everything I have from shoes to clothes to EVERYTHING!! My mom tells me I have to let her borrow stuff. I just want to feel like something is MINE and only MINE. And it’s not only clothes! She copies everything I DO! If I start playing a certain game, she has to play it. If I start using a word or phrase my friends are saying, she starts saying it too! It is SO ANNOYING!!! How do I make her stop?!?!?!

Copy-Cat-Kid Crisis

Hi Copy-Cat-Kid Crisis,

You have come to the RIGHT place to complain about annoying little sisters!!! I completely understand! Brianna and I have a bigger age difference, so I mostly don’t have to deal with her borrowing my clothes, but I DID once come home to find her in my room, painting tiger stripes on her face with all my different lip glosses!!!

And my mom was NO help! She told me to RELAX! Like telling someone to relax has EVER worked!!!

My mom also tells me that it’s a compliment when Brianna copies me. AS IF. Mom says Brianna copies me because she admires me and thinks I’m great and wants to be like me. So I should be flattered or something. LOL. I’m just hoping that eventually she’ll get bored and want to be herself, instead of trying to be ME!! 🙁

Even if your mom tells you that you have to share, there should be at least some things that are just yours. I think it would be reasonable to have a conversation with your mom about this, where you explain that you just want to feel like you have some privacy and control over your life and stuff. Maybe you can select some special pieces of clothing or other things that she is NOT allowed to borrow. If you feel like you have a bit of control over some special things, it might make it easier to deal with when she’s hogging your less special things.

The thing is, there’s not really anything you can do to change HER behavior. And (speaking from experience) making a big deal out of it actually makes it worse. So the main thing you can control is how you react when she’s copying you or stealing your stuff.

You could be super mad and annoyed all the time. But…that doesn’t feel good. So it might be best—for YOU—to figure out how to find it funny, or flattering. Also remember that it’s not going to last forever. Like, you’ll always be her big sister, and maybe she’ll always look up to you, but hopefully as you guys get older, she’ll be less annoying about it and stop copying you.

Being an older sister is TOUGH! But you’re not alone. I’m right there with you! 😀

Who else is an older sibling? How do you handle it when your little siblings copy you? Or are you a younger sibling who tries to keep up with a cool older sibling? Tell us all about it in the comments!