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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Sisters : exploring a fundamental female bond Knodel, Rita Irene 1986

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SISTERS: EXPLORING A FUNDAMENTAL FEMALE BOND by RITA IRENE KNODEL B.A., The University of Alberta, 1982 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department of Counselling Psychology We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r i l 1986 © Rita Irene Knodel, 1986 In presenting t h i s thesis in p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for an advanced degree at the The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t fr e e l y a v a i l a b l e for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s t h e s i s for scholar l y purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by h i s or her representatives. It i s understood that copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of Counselling Psychology The Unive r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 Date: A p r i l 1986 i i ABSTRACT This study explores the nature and si g n i f i c a n c e of supportive and s a t i s f y i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s between adult s i s t e r s and how these t i e s are f a c i l i t a t e d . The importance of t h i s fundamental female bond has been implied by a number of invest i g a t o r s in the areas of women's studies (Bernard, 1976; Caplan, 1981; M i l l e r , 1976; Smith-Rosenberg, 1975), and in the s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n research (Bank & Kahn, 1982; C i c i r e l l i , 1982; Lamb & Sutton-Smith, 1982). The s p e c i f i c topic of the s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p however, has not yet been researched. An abbreviated So c i a l Support Questionnaire - SSQ (Sarason, Levine, Basham & Sarason, 1983) was used as an objective measure to draw a sample of women who had supportive s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Twenty-five female u n i v e r s i t y students ranging in age from 17-35 were randomly chosen from the sample of women whose questionnaire responses indicated supportive and s a t i s f y i n g s i s t e r bonds. The women rated t h e i r s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p and a female fri e n d s h i p on the Friendship Behavior Inventory - FBI - (La Gaipa, 1977). Respondents were then interviewed using the The C r i t i c a l Incident Technique (Flanagan, 1954). This q u a l i t a t i v e interview procedure was used to e l i c i t and analyze the c r i t i c a l incidents which were perceived as f a c i l i t a t i n g supportive s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The SSQ r e s u l t s indicated that 82% of the women with s i s t e r s , surveyed, reported close r e l a t i o n s h i p s with t h e i r s i s t e r s , and indicated that these were a major source of support. The ratings of s i s t e r s and friends on the FBI showed that s i s t e r s were rated s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher on measures of s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e , help and support, a u t h e n t i c i t y , empathic understanding and p o s i t i v e regard. There were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s in the areas of s i m i l a r i t y and strength of character. The f a c i l i t a t i n g factors e l i c i t e d by the C r i t i c a l Incident Technique were categorized in 3 major areas: 1. External Influences - The early s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p i s shaped by environmental influences and factors outside the c o n t r o l of the s i s t e r s themselves. 2. Intra-personal and Inter-personal C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s The a f f e c t i v e nature and c o m p a t i b i l i t y within the r e l a t i o n s h i p i t s e l f are important in strengthening and maintaining a p o s i t i v e bond. 3. S p e c i f i c L i f e Events - Strengthening in the s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p can be triggered by s p e c i f i c l i f e events both expected or developmental events and unexpected incidents. The implications of these findings for counselling, parenting and s i s t e r i n g are discussed. i v T A B L E OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT i i L I S T OF T A B L E S v i i L I S T OF F IGURES v i i i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS i x CHAPTER I: INTRODUCTION . 1 A . OVERVIEW 1 B . THE IMPORTANCE OF WOMEN'S HOMOSOCIAL R E L A T I O N S H I P S . . . . 2 C . FEMALE S O C I A L I Z A T I O N AND DEVELOPMENT 5 D. RESEARCH QUESTIONS 11-E . D E F I N I T I O N S 12 CHAPTER I I : L I T E R A T U R E REVIEW 13 A . WOMEN'S STUDIES 13 B . S I B L I N G RESEARCH 17 1. P s y c h o a n a l y t i c a n d P s y c h o l o g i c a l R e s e a r c h . . . . 17 2 . S o c i o l o g i c a l R e s e a r c h 22 C . S I S T E R S AND FRIENDS 28 CHAPTER I I I : METHODOLOGY 3 3 A . THE Q U A N T I T A T I V E STUDY: INSTRUMENTS & HYPOTHESES . . 33 1. S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e ( A p p e n d i x I ) . . . . 33 2 . F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y ( A p p e n d i x I I ) 36 B . RESEARCH HYPOTHESES 40 C . THE Q U A L I T A T I V E STUDY: THE C R I T I C A L INCIDENT TECHNIQUE 42 V 1. D e v e l o p m e n t a n d A p p l i c a t i o n 42 2 . R a t i o n a l e a n d R e s e a r c h Q u e s t i o n s 44 3 . The I n t e r v i e w 46 CHAPTER I V : RESEARCH FINDINGS 49 A . P A R T I C I P A N T S 49 B . OCCURENCE OF SUPPORTIVE S I S T E R R E L A T I O N S H I P S - . 50 C . THE NATURE OF THE S I S T E R BOND 52 1 . D e m o g r a p h i c I n f o r m a t i o n 52 2 . F r e q u e n c y o f C o n t a c t . . . . 52 3 . S i s t e r s v s F r i e n d s 53 D. F A C I L I T A T I N G FACTORS 56 1. F r e q u e n c i e s o f F a c t o r s 68 E . ADDIT IONAL EXPLORATORY QUESTIONS 70 CHAPTER V : D I S C U S S I O N 73 A . STATEMENT OF R E S U L T S 73 B . S I G N I F I C A N C E OF THE STUDY 77 1. T h e o r e t i c a l S i g n i f i c a n c e 77 2 . P r a c t i c a l S i g n i f i c a n c e 78 C . L I M I T S OF THE STUDY 87 1. G e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y 87 2 . M e a s u r i n g I n s t r u m e n t s 88 D. FUTURE I N V E S T I G A T I O N 89 E . SUMMARY 90 REFERENCES 91 A p p e n d i x A : R e v i s e d S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e 98 A p p e n d i x B: S i s t e r s P a c k a g e 102 v i A p p e n d i x C : A n n o t a t e d B i b l i o g r a p h y 107 A p p e n d i x D: F a c i l i t a t i n g F a c t o r s a n d t h e i r C a t e g o r i z a t i o n . 110 v i i L I S T OF T A B L E S T a b l e I: P r o p o r t i o n s o f Women who h a v e B r o t h e r s , a n d Women who h a v e S i s t e r s , who l i s t E a c h a s S u p p o r t i v e on t h e a b b r e v i a t e d S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e 51 T a b l e I I : Summary o f S i g n i f i c a n t Mean S c o r e D i f f e r e n c e s f o r Women's R e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r S i s t e r s a n d t h e i r F r i e n d s on t h e 7 D i m e n s i o n s o f t h e F r i e n d s h i p B e h a v i o r I n v e n t o r y . (N=25) 54 L I S T OF F IGURES F i g u r e 1: F r e q u e n c i e s o f F a c i l i t a t i n g F a c t o r s a n d t h e i r C a t e g o r i z a t i o n i x ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I w o u l d l i k e t o e x p r e s s a warm a p p r e c i a t i o n a n d t h a n k s t o my c o m m i t e e members D r . S h a r o n Kahn a n d D r . H a r o l d R a t z l a f f f o r t h e i r a s s i s t a n c e a n d e n c o u r a g e m e n t . As w e l l , I am v e r y g r a t e f u l t o my c o m m i t e e c h a i r p e r s o n D r . L o r e t t e W o o l s e y who i n s p i r e d a n d c h a l l e n g e d me w i t h h e r a c a d e m i c s t a n d a r d s f o r h i g h q u a l i t y r e s e a r c h . A s p e c i a l a c k n o w l e d g e m e n t i s e x t e n d e d t o my f a m i l y a n d f r i e n d s f o r t h e i r l o v e , p a t i e n c e , a n d o n - g o i n g s u p p o r t . And f i n a l l y , I want t o t h a n k t h e women who v o l u n t e e r e d t h e i r i n t e r e s t i n g s t o r i e s a n d e x p e r i e n c e s a n d t h e r e b y t r u l y made t h i s a r i c h s t u d y a n d a r e w a r d i n g p e r s o n a l e x p e r i e n c e . 1 CHAPTER I; INTRODUCTION A . OVERVIEW T h i s r e s e a r c h i n v e s t i g a t e s t h e n a t u r e a n d s i g n i f i c a n c e o f a d u l t f e m a l e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Women who i d e n t i f y t h e i r s i s t e r s a s i m p o r t a n t i n t h e i r s o c i a l n e t w o r k a r e a s k e d t o d e s c r i b e t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p , d i f f e r e n t i a t e i t f r o m s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s h i p s , a n d d e s c r i b e t h e c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s w h i c h f a c i l i t a t e d t h e i r l e v e l o f c l o s e n e s s . T h i s r e s e a r c h i s r e l e v a n t t o t h e g r o w i n g b o d y o f l i t e r a t u r e s u g g e s t i n g t h a t women 's s o c i a l s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s a n d p a r t i c u l a r i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h o t h e r women a r e v i t a l t o a w o m a n ' s s e l f - i d e n t i t y , s a t i s f a c t i o n a n d m e n t a l h e a l t h ( B e r n a r d , 1 9 7 6 ; C a p l a n , 1 9 8 1 ; D a v i d s o n & P a c k a r d , 1 9 8 1 ; a n d M i l l e r , 1 9 7 6 ) . I t i s n o t o n l y t h e h i g h c a p a c i t y f o r s u p p o r t a n d i n t i m a c y w i t h i n t h e a d u l t s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w h i c h makes i t s i g n i f i c a n t a n d w o r t h y o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n , b u t a l s o t h e t h e o r e t i c a l a s s e r t i o n t h a t s i s t e r s h a v e an i m p o r t a n t i n f l u e n c e i n d e v e l o p m e n t , s o c i a l i z a t i o n a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p p a t t e r n s w h i c h h a v e i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r f u t u r e a d u l t s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s (Bank & K a h n , 1 9 8 2 a ; L e v e r , 1978; S u t t o n - S m i t h & R o s e n b e r g , 1 9 7 0 ) . A h e a l t h y a n d s u p p o r t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s c a n p r o v i d e v a l i d a t i o n , s u p p o r t a n d i n t i m a c y . T h i s i n i t s e l f o f t e n p r o v i d e s s a t i s f a c t i o n f o r many women a n d / o r may e n c o u r a g e women t o s e e k o u t s i m i l a r q u a l i t y r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h o t h e r women, t h u s s u p p l y i n g a s t r o n g s u p p o r t s y s t e m . 2 T h e r e i s a s c a r c i t y o f i n f o r m a t i o n i n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e s i s t e r b o n d , w h i c h i s a p r i m a r y s o u r c e o f i n t e r a c t i o n a n d s u p p o r t f o r many women' ( A d a m s , 1968 ; K o m a r o v s k y , 1967; S t i v e n s , 1 9 7 8 ) , a n d one w h i c h h a s t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r b e i n g one o f t h e most i n t i m a t e o f human r e l a t i o n s ( C i c i r e l l i , 1 9 8 2 ; Cummings & S c h n e i d e r , 1 9 6 1 ; M e a d , 1 9 7 2 ) . T h i s r e s e a r c h c o n t r i b u t e s t o t h e u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f t h e n a t u r e o f t h e b o n d b e t w e e n a d u l t s i s t e r s , t h e r o l e s i s t e r s p l a y i n t h e s u p p o r t n e t w o r k a n d t h e f a c t o r s w h i c h f a c i l i t a t e a c l o s e , s u p p o r t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p . B.. THE IMPORTANCE OF WOMEN'S HOMOSOCIAL RELATIONSHIPS Women's s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s h a v e been shown t o be v e r y i m p o r t a n t t o women 's m e n t a l h e a l t h ( B e r n a r d , 1 9 7 6 ; D a v i d s o n & P a c k a r d , 1 9 8 1 ) , t o s e l f - e s t e e m , i d e n t i t y f o r m a t i o n a n d s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n ( C a p l a n , 1981 ; H a r r i s , 1984; M i l l e r , 1 9 7 6 ) , a n d t o s o c i a l s u p p o r t ( A d a m s , 1 9 6 8 ; K o m a r o v s k y , 1 9 6 7 ) . T h e t h e r a p e u t i c v a l u e o f f e m a l e s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s h i p i s known t o be p a r t i c u l a r i l y b e n e f i c i a l d u r i n g c r i s i s , t r a n s i t i o n a n d s t r e s s ( B r o w n , B h r o l c h a i n & H a r r i s , 1 9 7 5 ) , and i s i m p o r t a n t i n a l l e v i a t i n g t h e f e e l i n g s o f l o n e l i n e s s a n d d e p r e s s i o n i n women ( B e r n a r d , 1976 ; W e i s s , 1 9 7 3 ) . H a v i n g a f e m a l e c o n f i d a n t e seems t o b u f f e r t h e s e a d v e r s e e f f e c t s a n d c a n f u r t h e r be v e r y i m p o r t a n t i n t h e m a i n t e n a n c e o f h e a l t h y s e l f - e s t e e m , b e c a u s e i n r e c o g n i z i n g an i m p o r t a n t f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p , a woman i n e f f e c t , v a l i d a t e s h e r s e l f a n d 3 h e r own f e m a l e e x p e r i e n c e . A l t h o u g h i t d o e s n o t seem t o m a t t e r t o whom a woman t u r n s f o r s u p p o r t , w h e t h e r a f e m a l e f r i e n d o r r e l a t i v e , h e r h e a l t h a n d s a t i s f a c t i o n do r e l y on t h a t c o n n e c t i o n a n d s u p p o r t ( B e r n a r d , 1 9 7 6 ) . I t i s i m p o r t a n t t o n o t e t h a t t h e h o m o s o c i a l o r s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s d i s c u s s e d h e r e a r e b a s e d on s o c i a l , n o n - s e x u a l b o n d s t h a t women h a v e w i t h o t h e r women a n d t h a t men h a v e w i t h o t h e r men , w h i c h i n c l u d e r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h f r i e n d s , r e l a t i v e s , n e i g h b o r s , w o r k m a t e s , e t c . H o m o s o c i a l i t y i s n o t l i n k e d t o e i t h e r h o m o s e x u a l i t y o r h e t e r o s e x u a l i t y . I t r e f e r s , q u i t e s i m p l y , t o t h e common b o n d s b e t w e e n p e o p l e o f t h e s a m e - s e x r e g a r d l e s s o f s e x u a l o r i e n t a t i o n . T h e d e f i n i t i o n o f h o m o s o c i a l i t y i s b a s e d on t h e t h e o r e t i c a l c o n c e p t i o n s o f v a r i o u s w r i t e r s ( B e r n a r d , 1976 , L i p m a n - B l u m e n , 1976 ; S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g , 1975; W o o l s e y , • 1 9 8 4 ) , a n d h a s b e e n u s e d b o t h a s a d o m a i n f o r r e s e a r c h i n q u i r y a n d a s a p e r s o n a l i t y c o n s t r u c t . T h e d e f i n i t i o n a p p l i e s t o p e o p l e ' s a c t u a l s a m e - s e x s o c i a l t i e s t h e a c t u a l b e h a v i o r o f b e i n g i n v o l v e d i n s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s . H o m o s o c i a l i t y i s d e s c r i b e d by L i p m a n - B l u m e n a s " s e e k i n g e n j o y m e n t a n d / o r p r e f e r e n c e f o r t h e company o f o t h e r p e o p l e o f o n e ' s own s e x " , a n d by B e r n a r d , a s t h e " d i f f e r e n t ways men a n d women r e l a t e t o t h e i r own s e x " . H o m o s o c i a l i t y c a n a l s o be v i e w e d a s a p e r s o n a l i t y c o n s t r u c t , t h e p r e d i s p o s i t i o n o r t e n d e n c y t o a f f i l i a t e i n s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s . 4 T h e p r e s e n t s t u d y - e x a m i n e s t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s w i t h i n t h e f r a m e w o r k o f h o m o s o c i a l i t y . S i n c e h o m o s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s a r e i n c r e a s i n g l y b e i n g r e c o g n i z e d a n d v a l u e d f o r t h e i m p o r t a n t r o l e t h e y p l a y i n w o m e n ' s s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s ( B e r n a r d , 1976 ; S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g , 1 9 7 5 ) , u n d e r s t a n d i n g more a b o u t f u n d a m e n t a l s a m e - s e x b o n d s b e t w e e n women, a n d what f a c i l i t a t e s them i s a w o r t h w h i l e p u r s u i t . T h i s s t u d y l o o k s a t women who h a v e s u p p o r t i v e a n d s a t i s f y i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r s . T h e s e women a r e i n t e r v i e w e d i n an o p e n - e n d e d manner a n d a s k e d t o d e s c r i b e t h e i r s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , t o d i f f e r e n t i a t e them f r o m o t h e r f e m a l e f r i e n d s h i p s a n d t o d e s c r i b e s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s o r e v e n t s w h i c h t h e y p e r c e i v e a s i m p o r t a n t f a c i l i t a t o r s o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h e s t u d y o f t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p , a s a f u n d a m e n t a l f e m a l e b o n d c o n t r i b u t e s s i g n i f i c a n t l y t o t h e c o n c e p t o f f e m a l e h o m o s o c i a l i t y a n d h i g h l i g h t s t h e s p e c i a l q u a l i t i e s w h i c h a r e i n h e r e n t t o f e m a l e i n t e r a c t i o n . The q u a l i t y o f h o m o s o c i a l b o n d s b e t w e e n women h a s b e e n d e s c r i b e d a s s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t f r o m c r o s s - s e x a n d m e n ' s s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n d t h e s e d i f f e r e n c e s h a v e b e e n e l u c i d a t e d i n f r i e n d s h i p s t u d i e s . F o r e x a m p l e , women's r e l a t i o n s h i p s a r e d e s c r i b e d a s more a f f e c t i v e l y r i c h a n d e n d u r i n g ( D a v i d s o n & P a c k a r d , 1981) a n d t e n d t o e m p h a s i z e a n d e n c o u r a g e t h e s o c i a l a n d e m o t i o n a l a s p e c t s w i t h i n f r i e n d s h i p , w h e r e a s men t e n d t o m a i n t a i n a more t a s k o r a c t i v i t y - o r i e n t e d b a s i s f o r i n t e r a c t i o n ( C a l d w e l l & 5 P e p l a u , 1 9 8 0 ; P a r s o n s & B a l e s , 1 9 5 5 ) . Women a r e a l s o more e m p a t h i c a n d a r e more i n t e r p e r s o n a l l y o r i e n t e d t h a n men p r o b a b l y due t o t h e s o c i a l i z a t i o n p r o c e s s o f c h i l d h o o d ( B l o c k , 1984; Chodor .ow, 1 9 7 1 ) . H i g h e r l e v e l s o f i n t i m a c y h a v e a l s o been shown i n women 's s a m e - s e x ( n o n - s e x u a l ) r e l a t i o n s h i p s a s c o m p a r e d t o m a l e / m a l e a n d m a l e / f e m a l e i n t e r a c t i o n s ( F i s c h e r & N a r u s , 1 9 8 1 ) . And t h o u g h s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s a r e e q u a l l y i m p o r t a n t f o r b o t h men a n d women, b o t h s e x e s p r e f e r t h e i n t i m a t e n a t u r e o f i n t e r a c t i o n t h a t women more o f t e n p r o v i d e i n s u p p o r t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( G i b b s , A u b e r b a c h & F o x , 1 9 8 0 ) . G i v e n t h e s e f i n d i n g s , t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r an i n t i m a t e a n d s u p p o r t i v e b o n d b e t w e e n s i s t e r s seems h i g h . I n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p more t h o r o u g h l y , w i t h q u a l i t a t i v e a n d q u a n t i t a t i v e m e a s u r e s , s h o u l d p r o v i d e more i n s i g h t i n t o t h e n a t u r e o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p , i t s u n i q u e f e a t u r e s a n d f a c t o r s w h i c h f a c i l i t a t e a s t r o n g , p o s i t i v e b o n d . C . FEMALE S O C I A L I Z A T I O N AND DEVELOPMENT F e m a l e s i n o u r s o c i e t y , a n d i n many o t h e r c u l t u r e s a r e s o c i a l i z e d f r o m an e a r l y age t o p l a y a p a r t i c u l a r r o l e i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( B a r r y , B a c o n & C h i l d , 1 9 5 7 ) . T h e y a r e e n c o u r a g e d t o p r o v i d e n u r t u r a n c e a n d e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t t o f r i e n d s a n d f a m i l y members a n d t o v a l u e r e l a t i o n s h i p s w h e r e a s m a l e s a r e c o n d i t i o n e d t o be more i n d e p e n d e n t o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( B l o c k , 1984; D u n n , 1 9 8 5 ) . I t i s w i t h i n t h e f a m i l y where g i r l s l e a r n t h e i r r o l e a n d b e g i n i n t e r a c t i n g i n a n u r t u r i n g , 6 s u p p o r t i v e a n d i n t i m a t e m a n n e r . I t i s h y p o t h e s i z e d t h a t t h e n a t u r e o f e a r l y i n t e r a c t i o n p r o v i d e s t h e b a s i s o r p a t t e r n f o r how i n d i v i d u a l s b e h a v e i n f u t u r e s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( A b r a m o v i t c h , P e p l e r a n d C a r t e r , 1982; C h o d o r o w , 1 9 7 8 ; K o h u t , 1971 ; L e v e r , 1978; T o m a n , 1 9 6 9 ) . T h e r e f o r e e a r l y i n t e r a c t i o n f o r f e m a l e s may be p a r t i c u l a r l y i m p o r t a n t f o r t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f s t r o n g f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f a d u l t h o o d . C h o d o r o w (1978) t h e o r i z e s t h a t women 's e m b e d d e d n e s s i n s o c i a l n e t w o r k s d i r e c t l y r e f l e c t s t h e e a r l y c h i l d h o o d s o c i a l c o n t e x t . She a r g u e s t h a t t h e s o c i a l c o n t e x t s e x p e r i e n c e d by b o y s a n d by g i r l s o v e r t h e c h i l d h o o d y e a r s i s d i f f e r e n t , a n d t h a t t h i s d i f f e r e n c e a c c o u n t s f o r t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f many p s y c h o l o g i c a l sex d i f f e r e n c e s , b u t p a r t i c u l a r l y f o r women 's a f f i l i a t i v e b e h a v i o r a s c o m p a r e d t o m e n ' s i n d i v i d u a l i s m . She e x p l a i n s t h a t s i n c e g i r l s a r e s o c i a l i z e d by t h e i r m o t h e r s who a r e o f t h e s a m e - s e x , t h e p r o c e s s o f m e r g i n g a n d s e p a r a t i o n i s o n g o i n g , w h e r e a s d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n f o r b o y s i s more c l e a r c u t . T h i s c o n t i n u a l p r o c e s s e n c o u r a g e s a f f i l i a t i o n a n d a l l o w s f o r t h e g r e a t e r s e n s i t i v i t y g i r l s h a v e f o r a n o t h e r p e r s o n ' s f e e l i n g s a n d n e e d s ( C h o d o r o w , 1 9 7 8 ) . O t h e r t h e o r i s t s h a v e a l s o d i s c u s s e d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s t o f e m a l e d e v e l o p m e n t . A c c o r d i n g t o E r i k s o n ( 1 9 5 9 ) , a woman 's i d e n t i t y i s c o n t i n g e n t upon a c h i e v i n g i n t i m a c y w i t h a n o t h e r , w h i l e t h i s i s n o t n e c e s s a r y f o r d e v e l o p m e n t o f m a l e i d e n t i t y . G i l l i g a n (1982) s u g g e s t s t h a t 7 women come t o know t h e m s e l v e s t h r o u g h t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h o t h e r s . T h u s , t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n m o t h e r a n d d a u g h t e r h a s b e e n i d e n t i f i e d by many a s b e i n g c e n t r a l t o t h e d a u g h t e r ' s i d e n t i t y f o r m a t i o n a n d t o h e r a b i l i t y t o d e v e l o p c l o s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h o t h e r women ( C a p l a n 1 9 8 1 ; C h o d o r o w , 1978; D e u t s c h , 1945 ; a n d F i s c h e r , 1 9 8 1 ) . T h i s f o r m u l a t i o n d o e s n o t , h o w e v e r , r e c o g n i z e o t h e r i m p o r t a n t f e m a l e f a m i l y m e m b e r s . T h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s c a n be a s s i g n i f i c a n t a s t h e m o t h e r - d a u g h t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p . One s u c h i m p o r t a n t a n d o f t e n o v e r l o o k e d r e l a t i o n s h i p i s t h a t b e t w e e n s i s t e r s . S i b l i n g s , i n . g e n e r a l , a r e j u s t b e g i n n i n g t o be r e c o g n i z e d f o r t h e i m p o r t a n t r o l e t h e y p l a y i n s o c i a l i z a t i o n a n d d e v e l o p m e n t . P r e v i o u s l y s i b l i n g s were r e g a r d e d p r i m a r i l y i n r e f e r e n c e t o r i v a l r y o r b i r t h o r d e r e f f e c t s , b u t n o t f o r t h e i r i n t e r a c t i o n a l i n f l u e n c e a n d v a l u e ( A l d o u s , 1 9 7 7 ; I r i s h , 1 9 6 4 ) . M o r e r e c e n t l y , t h e o r i s t s ( A l d o u s , 1978; Bank & K a h n , 1 9 8 2 a ; C i c i r e l l i , 1982; R o s e n b e r g , 1982) h a v e a d o p t e d t h e v i e w t h a t s i b l i n g s h a v e a p r o f o u n d i m p a c t on one a n o t h e r — b o t h d u r i n g e a r l y f o r m a t i v e ' s t a g e s a n d t h r o u g h o u t t h e l i f e s p a n . C i c i r e l l i ( 1 9 8 2 ) , f o r e x a m p l e , e x t e n d s B o w l b y ' s a t t a c h m e n t t h e o r y b e y o n d p a r e n t s , t o i n c l u d e s i b l i n g s . T h i s f o r m u l a t i o n h a s b e e n s u p p o r t e d i n r e s e a r c h s t u d i e s ( R o s s , D a l t o n & M i l g r a m , I 9 8 0 ( a s c i t e d i n C i c i r e l l i ) ; T r o l l & S m i t h , 1 9 7 6 ) , a n d h e l p s t o e x p l a i n t h e p e r v a s i v e n e s s o f s t r o n g s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s a c r o s s t i m e a n d g e o g r a p h i c a l d i s t a n c e . 8 Bank & Kahn (1982a) a l s o a r g u e t h a t s i b l i n g s a r e v e r y i m p o r t a n t d u r i n g t h e p r o c e s s o f i d e n t i t y f o r m a t i o n . T h e y p r o p o s e t h a t s e l f - i d e n t i t y d e v e l o p s i n i n d i v i d u a l s by a p r o c e s s o f c o m p a r i s o n w i t h t h o s e a r o u n d t h e m ; b o u n d a r i e s a r e d e f i n e d by way o f s i m i l a r i t i e s a n d d i f f e r e n c e s w i t h s i b l i n g s a n d p a r e n t s . When t h e r e a r e many s i m i l a r i t i e s , a s f o r same s e x s i b l i n g s , c l o s e i n a g e , t h e t a s k o f b o u n d a r y - s e t t i n g a n d d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n i s more d i f f i c u l t , b u t when a c c o m p l i s h e d , t h e r e i s h e i g h t e n e d a w a r e n e s s a n d u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f one a n o t h e r a n d s e l f . M c N a r o n (1985) c o n t e n d s t h a t t h e c a p a c i t y f o r a . d e e p l y f e l t c o n n e c t i o n i s p a r t i c u l a r i l y s a l i e n t f o r s i s t e r s g i v e n t h e i r p r o c e s s o f i d e n t i t y f o r m a t i o n i n a n d t h r o u g h r e l a t i o n s h i p s . She a d d s t h a t t h e d i l e m m a s i s t e r s f a c e i n d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g f r o m one a n o t h e r i s an e v o l v i n g p r o c e s s w h i c h e n a b l e s s i s t e r s t o know t h e m s e l v e s a n d t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s t o o t h e r s . M c C o n v i l l e (1985) a l s o r e c o g n i z e s t h a t a s i s t e r i s a c o n s t a n t r e f e r e n c e p o i n t on w h i c h a g i r l g a u g e s h e r own i d e n t i t y , a n d i n c o m i n g t o t e r m s w i t h t h e i r l i k e n e s s e s a n d d i f f e r e n c e s , g i r l s e s t a b l i s h t h e n a t u r e o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p . E v e n when t h e r e a r e m a j o r d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n t h e two - - e a c h i d e n t i t y d e p e n d s o f b e i n g u n l i k e h e r s i s t e r ' s a n d , t h u s , s t i l l uses* t h e s i s t e r a s a r e f e r e n c e p o i n t . When s i s t e r s a r e v e r y much a l i k e , a s f o r t w i n s , t h e p r o c e s s o f d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n c a n be c o m p l i c a t e d , a n d / o r n e v e r 9 f u l l y r e s o l v e d . H o w e v e r , t h e l e v e l o f i n t i m a c y w h i c h o f t e n r e s u l t s i s p h e n o m e n a l . S c h a v e a n d C i r e l l o (1983) f o r e x a m p l e , f o u n d t h a t many t w i n s a r e h i g h l y " a d e p t , aware a n d e m p a t h i c i n c o m m u n i c a t i o n " , a n d o f t e n " s e e k t o e s t a b l i s h c l o s e a n d i n t i m a t e r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f a q u a l i t a t i v e l y s i m i l a r n a t u r e a s t h e i r o r i g i n a l t w i n s h i p , w i t h p e o p l e t h r o u g h o u t l i f e " ( p . 1 0 0 ) . T h i s i s o f r e l e v a n c e t o t h e s t u d y o f s i s t e r s , b e c a u s e a s t h e a g e d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n s i s t e r s d e c r e a s e s , t h e more c l o s e l y t h e i r s i t u a t i o n a p p r o a c h e s t h a t o f t w i n s ( M c N a r o n , 1985) , a n d a s e x p l a i n e d by Bank & Kahn ( 1 9 8 2 a ) , i t i s t h e " h i g h a c c e s s " b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s w h i c h i n t e n s i f i e s s i b l i n g i n f l u e n c e . A l t h o u g h t h e s i t u a t i o n o f t w i n s o f t e n p r e d i s p o s e s h i g h a c c e s s i b i l i t y , i t i s e n t i r e l y p o s s i b l e t h a t n o n - t w i n s i b l i n g s r e a r e d i n a p h y s i c a l l y a n d e m o t i o n a l l y c l o s e e n v i r o n m e n t may h a v e more i n f l u e n c e on one a n o t h e r , t h a n t w i n s who a r e r a i s e d s e p a r a t e l y o r who h a v e d i f f e r e n t i n t e r e s t s , f r i e n d s , rooms s c h o o l s , e t c . I t i s t h e h i g h a c c e s s i b i l i t y w h i c h p r o m o t e s a w a r e n e s s a n d u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f one o t h e r . T h e s e d i s c o v e r i e s , a l o n g w i t h t h e f i n d i n g t h a t f e m a l e s l e a r n a n d p r a c t i c e a f f i l i a t i v e s k i l l s f r o m an e a r l y age c o m p o u n d t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r i n t i m a c y a n d u n d e r s t a n d i n g i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s . T h o u g h t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n a g i r l a n d h e r m o t h e r c a n be f o u n d a t i o n a l t o h e r f u t u r e d e v e l o p m e n t a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p s a t i s f a c t i o n , t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s 10 h a s been s e e n by some w r i t e r s a s e v e n more s i g n i f i c a n t (Adams , 1968; Bank & K a h n , 1982b; C i c i r e l l i , 1982; F i s c h e l , 1979; M c C o n v i l l e , 1985; M c N a r o n , 1 9 8 5 ) . T h e p r i m a c y o f t h e s i s t e r b o n d l i e s i n t h e s t r u c t u r e o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . A s p e e r s " t h e c h a n n e l s b e t w e e n s i s t e r a n d s i s t e r a r e more e a s i l y v i a b l e , l e s s g u a r d e d a n d d e f e n d e d a g a i n s t t h a n t h e b y w a y s b e t w e e n m o t h e r a n d d a u g h t e r " ( F i s c h e l , 1 9 7 9 ; p . 1 4 7 ) . The e g a l i t a r i a n r e l a t i o n s h i p a l l o w s more s h a r i n g , u n d e r s t a n d i n g a n d i n t i m a c y . T h e r e i s g r o w i n g e v i d e n c e w h i c h s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p c a n - be a v e r y i m p o r t a n t one f o r women. S i s t e r s a r e f r e q u e n t l y a p r i m a r y s o u r c e o f s u p p o r t f o r one a n o t h e r a n d o f t e n r e p o r t h i g h l e v e l s o f c o m m u n i c a t i o n a n d u n d e r s t a n d i n g ( A d a m s , 1968; K o m a r o v s k y , 1967; S t i v e n s , 1 9 7 8 ) . The s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p h a s b e e n p r e s e n t e d a s t h e c l o s e s t o f a l l s i b l i n g c o m b i n a t i o n s a n d one w h i c h b e c o m e s p a r t i c u l a r i l y s t r o n g f o r e l d e r l y women ( C i c i r e l l i , 1 9 8 2 ; Cummings & S c h n e i d e r , 1 9 6 1 ; M c G h e e , 1985; M e a d , 1 9 7 2 ) . A l t h o u g h n o t a l l women h a v e s i s t e r s , M c C o n v i l l e (1985) p r o p o s e s t h a t many o f t h e i s s u e s s i s t e r s f a c e — i s s u e s o f l o v e , s u p p o r t , c o n f l i c t a n d r i v a l r y a r e m i r r o r e d i n o u r s o c i e t y , i n g e n e r a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n women a n d t h e r e f o r e h a v e r e l e v a n c e t o a w i d e r s p h e r e o f women. T h o u g h t h e p r e v i o u s s t u d i e s i m p l y t h a t a d u l t s i s t e r s h a v e t h e p o t e n t i a l f o r h i g h l y s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p s , no s y s t e m a t i c r e s e a r c h h a s i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e s e o r o t h e r s a m e - s e x 11 s i b l i n g b o n d s . D i s t i n g u i s h i n g t h e s u b s e t o f s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n t h e s i b l i n g r e a l m i s an i m p o r t a n t b a s i c d i s t i n c t i o n w h i c h s h o u l d be m a d e , g i v e n t h e s e x d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e s o c i a l i z a t i o n a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p p a t t e r n s o f m a l e s a n d f e m a l e s ; a n d by s t u d y i n g t h e n a t u r e o f s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r b o n d s i m p o r t a n t i n f o r m a t i o n r e l e v a n t t o w o m e n ' s h o m o s o c i a l b o n d s ( i n g e n e r a l ) a n d s i b l i n g s a m e - s e x i n t e r a c t i o n c a n be d i s c o v e r e d . D. RESEARCH QUESTIONS T h e f o l l o w i n g r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s a r e s e t o u t t o p r o v i d e a f o c u s f o r t h e e x p l o r a t i o n o f s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , w h i c h i s t h e m a i n a i m o f t h i s s t u d y . 1. I s t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p an i m p o r t a n t one f o r women, a s i n d i c a t e d by t h e f r e q u e n c y w i t h w h i c h t h e y a r e i n c l u d e d i n t h e s u p p o r t n e t w o r k ? 2 . What i s t h e n a t u r e o f t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p a n d how d o e s i t c o m p a r e t o t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n f e m a l e f r i e n d s ? 3 . What c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s e n c o u r a g e o r f a c i l i t a t e t h e s u p p o r t i v e b o n d i n a s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p a n d how? T h r e e m e a s u r e s were u s e d t o i n v e s t i g a t e t h e s e a r e a s . The S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e ( S a r a s o n , L e v i n e , Basham & S a r a s o n , 1 9 8 3 ) , was u s e d a s an u n o b t r u s i v e m e t h o d f o r f i n d i n g t h e s a m p l e o f women who had s u p p o r t i v e a n d s a t i s f y i n g s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n t h e i r s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s . The F r i e n d s h i p B e h a v i o r I n v e n t o r y ( L a G a i p a , 1977) was u s e d t o c o m p a r e t h e 12 f r i e n d s h i p b e h a v i o r s o f s i s t e r s a n d f r i e n d s a n d t h e C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e ( F l a n a g a n , 1954) was u s e d a s a q u a l i t a t i v e i n t e r v i e w p r o c e d u r e f o r e l i c i t i n g , t h e n a n a l y z i n g c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s w h i c h were p e r c e i v e d a s f a c i l i t a t i n g a s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r b o n d . E . D E F I N I T I O N S S i s t e r s - f e m a l e f a m i l y members r e l a t e d g e n e t i c a l l y by h a v i n g one o r b o t h p a r e n t s i n common. S u p p o r t - an a c t i o n o r b e h a v i o r t h a t i s p e r c e i v e d by t h e i n d i v i d u a l t o a s s i s t i n d e a l i n g w i t h demands o f any p a r t i c u l a r s i t u a t i o n o r i n m e e t i n g p e r s o n a l g o a l s . T h i s a s s i s t a n c e may be t a n g i b l e , i n t h e f o r m o f a s s i s t a n c e o r i n t a n g i b l e , i n t h e f o r m o f p e r s o n a l w a r m t h , l o v e o r e m o t i o n a l a i d , a n d i n c l u d e s a l l s o c i a l , e m o t i o n a l a n d i n s t r u m e n t a l s e r v i c e s ( L a G a i p a , 1 9 8 1 ) . S u p p o r t S y s t e m . - i n d i v i d u a l s i n c l u d i n g : f a m i l y m e m b e r s , c l o s e f r i e n d s , c o - w o r k e r s , n e i g h b o u r s , h e l p i n g p r o f e s s i o n a l s , a n d o t h e r s who a r e d e s i g n a t e d by t h e i n d i v i d u a l a s p r o v i d i n g s o c i a l , e m o t i o n a l a n d / o r i n s t r u m e n t a l a s s i s t a n c e . 13 CHAPTER I I : L I T E R A T U R E REVIEW In r e v i e w i n g t h e l i t e r a t u r e on s i s t e r s b i o l o g i c a l l y r e l a t e d f e m a l e s i b l i n g s v e r y l i t t l e i s f o u n d . I t i s s u g g e s t e d t h a t t h i s i s b e c a u s e women 's r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n g e n e r a l h a v e n o t b e e n g i v e n much a t t e n t i o n by h i s t o r i a n s a n d r e s e a r c h e r s ( S e i d e n & B a r t , 1975; S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g , 1 9 7 5 ) , , a n d b e c a u s e s i b l i n g s , a s a g r o u p , h a d n o t , u n t i l j u s t r e c e n t l y , been c o n s i d e r e d an i m p o r t a n t i n f l u e n c e i n p s y c h o s o c i a l d e v e l o p m e n t (Bank & K a h n , 1982; Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h , 1 9 8 2 ) . A s r e l a t i v e l y new i n v e s t i g a t i v e f i e l d s , n e i t h e r f i e l d o f i n q u i r y h a s f o c u s e d on t h e p u r e ( b i o l o g i c a l ) s i s t e r b o n d . A . WOMEN'S STUDIES T i e s b e t w e e n women h a v e r e c i e v e d r e l a t i v e l y l i t t l e a t t e n t i o n i n t h e h i s t o r i c a l , a n t h r o p o l o g i c a l a n d p s y c h o l o g i c a l l i t e r a t u r e ( S e i d e n & B a r t , 1975 ; S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g , 1 9 7 5 ) . T h e y a r e o f t e n r e g a r d e d a s a p e r i p h e r a l p a r t o f t h e s o c i a l s y s t e m ( B l a u , 1 9 7 3 ) . T h o u g h t h e y h a v e s e l d o m been e x a m i n e d , b o n d s b e t w e e n women h a v e e x i s t e d a n d s e r v e d v e r y i m p o r t a n t f u n c t i o n s i n h e a l t h y d e v e l o p m e n t ( B e r n a r d , 1 9 7 6 ) . In 1975 , S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g p r e s e n t e d t h e n o t i o n t h a t f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s a r e a n d a l w a y s h a v e been a p r i m a r y p a r t Of s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e , t h e y h a v e j u s t been d e n i e d a n d / o r d e v a l u e d by t h e o r i s t s . She o u t l i n e s how t h e s e b o n d s h a v e c h a n g e d d u r i n g t h e c o u r s e o f h i s t o r y a n d what e f f e c t s t h e s e c h a n g e s h a v e h a d on w o m e n ' s l i v e s . 1 4 In t h e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y , women h a d a s o c i a l w o r l d g r o u n d e d i n f e m a l e k i n s h i p . A t t h e f o u n d a t i o n was an i n t i m a t e m o t h e r - d a u g h t e r b o n d w h i c h m o d e l e d t h e p o s i t i v e s t r e n g t h a n d s u p p o r t a n d i n t i m a c y o f f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The f e m a l e e x p e r i e n c e was f u r t h e r c e l e b r a t e d a n d v a l i d a t e d w i t h r i t u a l s l i n k i n g s i s t e r s , , c o u s i n s , n i e c e s , a u n t s a n d f e m a l e f r i e n d s t h r o u g h o u t l i f e . - S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g s u g g e s t s t h a t f e m a l e b o n d s were a c c e p t e d a n d v a l u e d f r o m an e a r l y a g e w h i c h f o s t e r e d i d e n t i t y - f o r m a t i o n a n d h e a l t h y s e l f - e s t e e m . T h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s s e r v e d b o t h e x p r e s s i v e a n d i n s t r u m e n t a l f u n c t i o n s a n d t h e y were s u p p o r t e d a n d e n c o u r a g e d w h e r e a s c r o s s - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f a d o l e s c e n t a n d y o u n g a d u l t s were s t r o n g l y d i s c o u r a g e d . T h e n i n t h e t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y , c h a n g e s o c c u r e d a t a s t r u c t u r a l l e v e l . W i t h m o d e r n i z a t i o n came an e m p h a s i s on t h e n u c l e a r f a m i l y , t h e s e p a r a t i o n o f t h e ' h o m e ' a n d ' w o r k ' p l a c e , a n d s u b s e q u e n t l y o f m e n ' s a n d w o m e n ' s w o r l d s . T h e d e v a l u a t i o n o f women, o f t h e i r r o l e s a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p s r e s u l t e d a s women became i s o l a t e d f r o m one a n o t h e r . T h i s t r e n d t o w a r d d e c r e a s e d c o n t a c t b e t w e e n women h a s h a d d e t r i m e n t a l e f f e c t s a c c o r d i n g t o many s c h o l a r s ( B e r n a r d , 1976 ; M i l l e r , 1976; S a f i 1 i o s - R o t h s c h i I d , 1 9 8 1 ) . Women h a v e i n c r e a s i n g l y r e l i e d on men t o p r o v i d e them w i t h r e c i p r o c a l , e m o t i o n a l n u r t u r a n c e a n d i n t i m a c y , h o w e v e r m o s t men a r e n o t s u f f i c i e n t i n t h e s e s k i l l s . Due t o t h e s o c i a l i z e d s e x 1 5 d i f f e r e n c e s a n d b e c a u s e o f t h e p s y c h o l o g i c a l a n d s o c i a l c o n s t r a i n t s on f e m a l e s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s , many women do n o t seem t o h a v e t h e s e n e e d s s a t i s f i e d ( B l a u , 1 9 7 3 ; C a p l a n , 1 9 8 1 ) . B e r n a r d (1976) u s e s t h e t e r m " r e l a t i o n a l d e f i c i t " t o d e s c r i b e t h e s o c i a l d e p r i v a t i o n women o f t e n e x p e r i e n c e when t h e y r e l y s o l e l y on men t o meet t h e i r n e e d s f o r n u r t u r a n c e a n d i n t i m a c y . Women who l a c k t h e e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t i n t h e i r m a r r i a g e a n d do n o t h a v e f e m a l e c o n f i d a n t e s s u f f e r much h i g h e r l e v e l s o f l o n e l i n e s s , d e p r e s s i o n a n d m e n t a l a n d p h y s i c a l i l l n e s s e s ( B e r n a r d , 1976; M i l l e r , 1976 ; W e i s s , 1 9 7 3 ) . T h i s h a s a l s o been s u p p o r t e d by . v a r i o u s s t u d i e s ( B e r n a r d , 1973 ; G o v e , 1972; a n d G u r i n , V e r o f f & F e l d , 1 9 6 0 ) , w h i c h h a v e b a s i c a l l y shown t h a t m a r r i e d women h a v e a h i g h e r r a t e o f m e n t a l i l l n e s s i n c o m p a r i s o n t o m a r r i e d men; a n d s i n g l e men a r e a t h i g h e r r i s k t h a n s i n g l e women. In e f f e c t , s i n g l e women a n d m a r r i e d men f a r e d b e t t e r i n t e r m s o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l h e a l t h . T h e m a r r i e d women who h a v e n o t s u f f e r e d h o m o s o c i a l d e p r i v a t i o n t o s u c h a g r e a t e x t e n t a r e t h o s e who , d e s p i t e s o c i e t a l c h a n g e s , h a v e m a i n t a i n e d s t r o n g t i e s w i t h o t h e r women f a m i l y a n d f r i e n d s . S t u d i e s h a v e i n d i c a t e d t h a t w o r k i n g - c l a s s women a s c o m p a r e d t o m i d d l e c l a s s women v a l u e a n d m a i n t a i n s t r o n g e r f e m a l e t i e s , p a r t i c u l a r i l y w i t h k i n ( A d a m s , 1968; A l l a n , 1977 ; K o m a r o v s k y , 1 9 6 7 ) . F o r e x a m p l e , K o m a r o v s k y (1967) f o u n d t h a t 63% o f t h e b l u e c o l l a r w i v e s s h e i n t e r v i e w e d s t a t e d t h e i r p r i m a r y c o n f i d a n t e s were e i t h e r t h e i r • 16 m o t h e r s o r s i s t e r s ; a n d 35% o f t h e women i n t h e b l u e c o l l a r s a m p l e a d m i t t e d t h a t t h e y s h a r e d some s i g n i f i c a n t s e g m e n t s o f t h e i r l i v e s more f u l l y w i t h t h e i r c o n f i d a n t e s t h a n w i t h t h e i r h u s b a n d s . O t h e r women who h a v e r e p o r t e d l y m a i n t a i n e d o r r e a f f i r m e d s t r o n g f e m a l e f a m i l y b o n d s h a v e b e e n women a c t i v e i n t h e women 's movement ( S e i d e n & B a r t , 1 9 7 5 ) . T h e y h a v e v a l u e d t h e i r f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n a n d o u t s i d e t h e f a m i l y e v e n t h o u g h f e m a l e s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s h a v e b e e n w i d e l y d e p r e c i a t e d i n o u r s o c i e t y . C o n s i d e r i n g t h e i m p o r t a n t i m p a c t p o s i t i v e f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s h a v e on g i r l s a n d women, i t seems p e r t i n e n t t h a t p r i m a r y f e m a l e t i e s — m o t h e r / d a u g h t e r a n d s i s t e r / s i s t e r — be r e v i t a l i z e d , a n d e x t e n d e d t o f e m a l e f r i e n d s h i p . T h e c o n c e p t o f " s i s t e r h o o d " i s an i d e a l t o w h i c h many f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s a s p i r e . The t e r m h a s b e e n u s e d w i d e l y i n t h e women 's s t u d i e s l i t e r a t u r e a n d h a s been a c k n o w l e d g e d i n r e l i g i o u s o r d e r s , i n u n i o n m o v e m e n t s , a n d i n c i v i l r i g h t s a n d women 's movements t o c o n n o t e t h e s p e c i a l b o n d o f l o v e a n d s o l i d a r i t y b e t w e e n i t s f e m a l e m e m b e r s . A l t h o u g h t h e b i o l o g i c a l s i s t e r b o n d h a s n o t y e t b e e n s t u d i e d f r o m w i t h i n t h i s a r e a o f l i t e r a t u r e , t h e c o n c e p t h a s been u s e d a s a m o d e l f o r h i g h l i g h t i n g t h e v a l u e a n d s i g n i f i c a n c e o f f e m a l e s a m e - s e x b o n d s . 1 7 B . S I B L I N G RESEARCH S i b l i n g r e s e a r c h a l s o l a c k s i n f o r m a t i o n e x c l u s i v e l y on s i s t e r s . T h e r e i s a g r o w i n g a c c u m u l a t i o n o f d a t a i n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e n a t u r e a n d s i g n i f i c a n c e o f s i b l i n g s i n g e n e r a l , b u t s t u d i e s h a v e n o t s e p a r a t e d a n d e x a m i n e d m a l e / m a l e o r f e m a l e / f e m a l e s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n . T h i s i s an i m p o r t a n t d i s t i n c t i o n w h i c h s h o u l d be m a d e . In t h e p a s t , s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n was l a r g e l y u n r e c o g n i z e d by t h e o r i s t s i n t h e s o c i a l s c i e n c e s . A l t h o u g h n u m e r o u s b i r t h o r d e r s t u d i e s e x i s t , t h e y do n o t a d d r e s s t h e s i g n i f i c a n c e o f s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n . A l d o u s (1977) i n h e r r e v i e w o f f a m i l y i n t e r a c t i o n r e s e a r c h r e c o g n i z e s t h e l a c k o f i n f o r m a t i o n i n t h i s a r e a . She comments t h a t " n e i t h e r g r o u p o f s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t ( s o c i o l o g i s t n o r p s y c h o l o g i s t ) h a s h a d much t o s a y a b o u t s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s d e s p i t e p e r i o d i c i n j u n c t i o n s i n a r t i c l e s w h i c h s a y s o m e t h i n g s h o u l d be d o n e " ( p . 1 0 5 ) . 1. P s y c h o a n a l y t i c a n d P s y c h o l o g i c a l R e s e a r c h . I t i s a s s u m e d t h a t t h i s o v e r s i g h t h a s been a d i r e c t r e s u l t o f F r e u d ' s i n f a n t d e t e r m i n i s t i c m o d e l o f d e v e l o p m e n t , w h i c h p r e s u m e d t h a t a l l m a j o r l i f e o u t c o m e s were p r e s e t i n t h e e a r l y f o r m a t i v e y e a r s by t h e s h a p i n g i n f l u e n c e o f p a r e n t s a l o n e . When p s y c h o t h e r a p i s t s h a v e a c k n o w l e d g e d s i b l i n g s t h e y t e n d e d t o f o c u s on t h e c h i l d h o o d r i v a l r y b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s o v e r t h e a f f e c t i o n o f t h e i r p a r e n t s ( L e v y , 1937; O b e r n d o r f , 1 9 2 9 ) . 18 A l f r e d A d l e r (1959) was t h e f i r s t n e o - F r e u d i a n t o c o n s i d e r s i b l i n g s f r o m a d i f f e r e n t p e r s p e c t i v e . H i s t h e o r y , s t e m m i n g f r o m t h e s e l f - r e p o r t s o f i n d i v i d u a l s , i n t r o d u c e d t h e c o n c e p t t h a t b i r t h o r d e r i s a m a j o r f a c t o r i n s i b l i n g r i v a l r y . Many o t h e r r e s e a r c h e r s a d o p t e d A d l e r ' s t h e o r y a n d a v a s t amount o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e l a t i n g b i r t h o r d e r t o a w i d e r a n g e o f v a r i a b l e s was c o m p i l e d . S u t t o n - S m i t h a n d R o s e n b e r g (1970) s u m m a r i z e t h i s b i r t h o r d e r a n d s i b l i n g s t a t u s r e s e a r c h t h o r o u g h l y . B a s i c a l l y t h e s t u d i e s t e s t e d l a r g e g r o u p s o f p e o p l e ( u s u a l l y s t u d e n t s ) on some a s p e c t o f p e r s o n a l i t y o r i n t e l l e c t u a l d e v e l o p m e n t a n d l o o k e d f o r s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s b a s e d on b i r t h o r d e r p o s i t i o n . Due t o t h e l i m i t a t i o n s o f c o r r e l a t i o n a l s t u d i e s , a n d many i n c o n s i s t e n t f i n d i n g s , b i r t h o r d e r r e s e a r c h h a s b e e n w i d e l y c r i t i c i z e d ( S c h o o l e r , 1972; S u t t o n - S m i t h & R o s e n b e r g , 1 9 7 0 ) . In a n y c a s e , t h e s e s t u d i e s d i d n o t p r o v i d e i n f o r m a t i o n on s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n . T h e n i n 1969 , Toman d e v e l o p e d h i s t h e o r y b a s e d on* i n d i v i d u a l t h e r a p y s e s s i o n s he h a d h a d w i t h h i s p a t i e n t s . He was t h e f i r s t t o e m p h a s i z e t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f o b t a i n i n g c o m p l e t e s i b l i n g h i s t o r i e s i n d i a g n o s t i c i n t e r v i e w i n g b e c a u s e he a s s e r t e d t h a t s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s were a c r u c i a l d e v e l o p i n g g r o u n d f o r s u b s e q u e n t r e l a t i o n s h i p s . He p r e s e n t e d t h e i d e a t h a t t h e c l o s e r new r e l a t i o n s h i p s - - p a r t i c u l a r l y m a r i t a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s - - r e p l i c a t e t h e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s 19 o f a p e r s o n ' s c h i l d h o o d , t h e more s u c c e s s f u l a n d f r e e f r o m c o n f l i c t t h e y w i l l b e . A f t e r T o m a n , r e s e a r c h e r s i n c r e a s i n g l y b e g a n t o g i v e s i b l i n g s more c r e d i t f o r t h e i r r o l e i n s o c i a l i z i n g one a n o t h e r a n d , i n some c a s e s , a c t u a l l y r a t e d s i b l i n g i m p a c t h i g h e r t h a n p a r e n t a l i n f l u e n c e ( L a n d y , R o s e n b e r g & S u t t o n - S m i t h , 1 9 6 9 ) . T h e y a l s o b e g a n t o s e e t h a t s i b l i n g i n f l u e n c e c o n t i n u e d w e l l b e y o n d t h e p e r i o d o f p a r e n t a l i m p a c t a n d r e c o g n i z e d t h a t r i v a l r y was n o t n e c e s s a r i l y t h e norm o f s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n i t was m e r e l y t h e p r e v a i l i n g a s s u m p t i o n b a s e d on t h e p r e p o n d e r a n c e o f r e s e a r c h w h i c h l o o k e d a t s i b l i n g s p r i m a r i l y d u r i n g " c o n f l i c t - p r o n e c h i l d h o o d a n d a d o l e s c e n c e " , n o t i n a d u l t h o o d (Bank & K a h n , 1 9 8 2 ) . G e n e r a l l y s i b l i n g s h a v e b e e n shown t o h a v e i n t e n s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h one a n o t h e r , p a r t i c u l a r l y s a m e - s e x s i b l i n g s , c l o s e i n age ( B r y a n t , 1 9 8 2 ) , a n d i t i s t h e i n t e n s i t y w h i c h a l s o h a s been shown t o be f a c i l i t a t i v e o f s t r o n g b o n d s o f f r i e n d s h i p a n d l o y a l t y b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s (Bank & K a h n , 1 9 8 2 a , 1 9 8 2 b ) . E v i d e n c e o f c l o s e a n d l o y a l s i b l i n g b o n d s were d o c u m e n t e d i n e a r l i e r r e s e a r c h l i t e r a t u r e . H o w e v e r , due t o t h e p r e v a i l i n g a s s u m p t i o n s o f t h e t i m e , i m p o r t a n t work was o v e r l o o k e d . One s u c h i m p o r t a n t c o n t r i b u t i o n was a 1956 s t u d y by B o s s a r d a n d B o l l . T h i s work i n v o l v e d i n t e r v i e w s w i t h one h u n d r e d a d u l t s i b l i n g s f r o m l a r g e f a m i l i e s . The a u t h o r s f o u n d t h a t s i b l i n g s h a d a v e r y i m p o r t a n t i n f l u e n c e on one a n o t h e r * — 20 e s p e c i a l l y i n l a r g e f a m i l y s y s t e m s where p a r e n t a l i m p a c t was d i l u t e d . T h e y a l s o d i s c o v e r e d " i n t r a - s i b l i n g c o m b i n e s " , s u b - u n i t s o f s i b l i n g s ( u s u a l l y d y a d s ) who p r o v i d e d l o y a l t y a n d p r i m a r y s o c i a l i z i n g f u n c t i o n s f o r e a c h o t h e r . T h e s e s i b l i n g c o a l i t i o n s were a n a l y z e d a s b e i n g drawn t o g e t h e r on a b a s i s o f l i k e n e s s , s i m i l a r i t y a n d c o m p l e m e n t a r i t y o f i n t e r e s t a n d m u t u a l n e e d . M o r e r e c e n t l y r e s e a r c h e r s i n p s y c h o l o g y ( i e . , Bank & Kahn) a n d i n s o c i o l o g y ( i e . , C i c i r e l l i ) h a v e drawn on B o s s a r d a n d B o l l ' s work a n d e x t e n d e d t h e s t u d y o f a d u l t s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Bank a n d Kahn ( 1 9 8 2 a , 1982b) h a v e i n v e s t i g a t e d c o a l i t i o n s b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s i n some d e t a i l . T h e i r w o r k ' i n v o l v e s f o c u s i n g on s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n f a m i l y t h e r a p y . T h e y f e e l t h a t s i b l i n g s o f an i n d i v i d u a l i n t h e r a p y a r e o f t e n much more e f f e c t i v e t h a n p a r e n t s i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g a n d h e l p i n g t h e p e r s o n i n n e e d . S i b l i n g s e x e r t p o w e r , e x c h a n g e s e r v i c e s a n d e x p r e s s f e e l i n g s i n a r e c i p r o c a l way w i t h one a n o t h e r . When t h e y a r e s e e n a p a r t f r o m p a r e n t s , t h e y a r e o f t e n more d i r e c t , s p o n t a n e o u s , l e s s c o m p e t i t i v e , a n d more " t u n e d i n " t o e a c h o t h e r . Bank a n d Kahn b e l i e v e t h a t u n d e r s t a n d i n g t h e s i b l i n g s u b s y s t e m c a n p r o v i d e a t h e r a p i s t w i t h a g r e a t e r r a n g e o f i n t e r v e n t i o n o p t i o n s . In t h e i r s t u d y o f s i b l i n g l o y a l t y , Bank a n d Kahn (1982b) a r g u e t h a t l o y a l t y i s a m a j o r theme o f s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n , w h i c h c a n c o e x i s t w i t h r i v a l r y a n d c o m p e t i t i o n . T h e y o u t l i n e 21 c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a l o y a l s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p as one where s i b l i n g s : 1) a c t i v e l y t r y t o be t o g e t h e r , and e x p e r i e n c e n e g a t i v e r e a c t i o n s t o b e i n g s e p a r a t e d , 2) m a i n t a i n a p o s i t i v e , c o o p e r a t i v e and h e l p f u l a t t i t u d e toward each o t h e r , 3) o f t e n share a s p e c i a l language, not always u n d e r s t o o d by o t h e r s , 4) p r o t e c t and defend one another from p h y s i c a l or p s y c h o l o g i c a l a t t a c k s by o u t s i d e r s , 5) a r e a b l e t o c o n t a i n and r e s o l v e c o n f l i c t o p e n l y and q u i c k l y among themselves and 6) acknowledge t h e i r d i s t i n c t i d e n t i t i e s which a r e c o m p a t i b l e and complementary. The development of a l o y a l s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p , a c c o r d i n g t o the a u t h o r s , i s p r i m a r i l y s t i m u l a t e d by a b a s i c weakness, absence or f a i l u r e of p a r e n t s and/or p a r e n t s u r r o g a t e s . Other f a c t o r s which i n t e n s i f y the e f f e c t a r e t h a t as c h i l d r e n , the s i b l i n g s were r e a r e d t o g e t h e r r a t h e r than a p a r t , t h e r e was some c o m p a t i b i l i t y such as c l o s e n e s s i n age and/or same sex, they were not p l a y e d a g a i n s t each o t h e r by p a r e n t s , and they had a t l e a s t one n u r t u r i n g r o l e model who s e t an e a r l y example of n u r t u r i n g and i n t e r p e r s o n a l s e n s i t i v i t y . A v a r i e t y of p s y c h o l o g i c a l s t u d i e s s u p p o r t t h i s n o t i o n t h a t p a r e n t a l over i n v o l v e m e n t d i m i n i s h e s s i b l i n g 22 l o y a l t y w h i l e u n d e r i n v o l v e m e n t c a n e m p h a s i z e i t ( B o s s a r d & B o l l , 1956; S u t t o n - S m i t h , R o s e n b e r g & L a n d y , 1 9 6 8 ) . H o w e v e r , i n l i m i t i n g t h e i r r e s e a r c h t o o n l y s i b l i n g s i n t h e r a p y , Bank a n d Kahn c a n n o t be s u r e how n o r m a l , w e l l - a d j u s t e d , i n t i m a t e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s e v o l v e . T h e y s u m m a r i z e by s a y i n g : We c a n o n l y i m a g i n e t h a t i n t e n s e l o y a l t y c a n be i n s t i l l e d by p a r e n t s who a r e e m o t i o n a l l y a v a i l a b l e t o t h e i r c h i l d r e n , b u t who r e f u s e t o become i n v o l v e d i n s e t t l i n g t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s . I t i s e n t i r e l y p o s s i b l e t h a t s i b l i n g l o y a l t y , a s an e t h i c o f c o n d u c t c a n be d e l i b e r a t e l y m o d e l e d , t a u g h t , a n d r e i n f o r c e d by t h o u g h t f u l p a r e n t s who h a v e n o t a b a n d o n e d t h e i r c h i l d r e n ( p . 2 6 5 ) . 2 . S o c i o l o g i c a l R e s e a r c h . S o c i o l o g i c a l i n v e s t i g a t i o n h a s a l s o c o n t r i b u t e d t o t h e u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n a n d t h e n a t u r e o f a d u l t s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s . R e s e a r c h e r s , s u c h a s Adams ( 1 9 6 8 ) , A l d o u s ( 1 9 7 8 ) , C i c i r e l l i ( 1 9 8 2 ) , T r o l l (1971) a n d o t h e r s h a v e i d e n t i f i e d some i m p o r t a n t f e a t u r e s o f t h e s e i n t r a - f a m i l i a l t i e s . The f i r s t i m p o r t a n t c h a r a c t e r i s t i c i s t h e d u r a t i o n o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . F r o m b e g i n n i n g t o e n d , t h e t i m e s p a n i s r e m a r k a b l e l o n g . W h e r e a s f r i e n d s a n d n e i g h b o u r s a r e f o r g o t t e n o r d r o p p e d , f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s e n d u r e , u s u a l l y b e t w e e n 5 0 - 8 0 y e a r s , a n d c a n o u t l a s t p a r e n t - c h i l d t i e s by 2 0 - 3 0 y e a r s . S e c o n d l y , t h e q u a l i t y a n d c o n s i s t e n c y o f i n t e r a c t i o n s a r e a l s o u n i q u e . G e n e r a l l y s i b l i n g s know e a c h o t h e r a t a c o r e l e v e l , t h e y c a n be v e r y c o m f o r t a b l e e n g a g i n g i n c a s u a l a n d i n f o r m a l a c t i v i t i e s , a n d most f e e l some o b l i g a t i o n t o m a i n t a i n 23 r e g u l a r c o n t a c t . S i b l i n g s r a r e l y l o s e c o n t a c t w i t h one a n o t h e r e n t i r e l y ( C i c i r e l l i , 1 9 8 2 ) . A t h i r d c h a r a c t e r i s t i c i s t h e e g a l i t a r i a n n a t u r e o f most s i b i n t e r a c t i o n - p a r t i c u l a r i l y i n a d u l t h o o d , when b i r t h . o r d e r e f f e c t s a n d c h i l d h o o d r i v a l r i e s a r e l a r g e l y m i n i m i z e d ( A l l a n , 1977) . I t i s a l s o t r u e t h a t s i b l i n g s h a v e a s i m i l a r p e r s p e c t i v e i n l i f e - c o u r s e a n d h i s t o r i c a l e v e n t s , w h e r e a s p a r e n t s o f t e n h a v e a d i f f e r e n t g e n e r a t i o n a l v i e w ( A l d o u s , 1978) . F i n a l l y , t h e b o n d b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s i s o f t e n r e i n v o k e d d u r i n g c r i s i s . S i b s a r e a m a j o r s o u r c e o f m u t u a l a i d : e m o t i o n a l l y , f i n a n c i a l l y , w i t h c h i l d c a r e a n d h o u s e h o l d r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s ; a n d i n p r o t e c t i n g a n d l o o k i n g a f t e r one a n o t h e r ( T r o l l , - 1 9 7 1 ) . C u l t u r a l c h a n g e s w h i c h h a v e i n c r e a s e d s i b l i n g i n t e r d e p e n d e n c e a l s o h a v e b e e n i d e n t i f i e d by s o c i o l o g i s t s . I t i s a r g u e d t h a t s h r i n k i n g f a m i l y s i z e h e i g h t e n s r a t h e r t h a n l e s s e n s s i b i n t e r a c t i o n , b e c a u s e i n s m a l l f a m i l i e s where c h i l d r e n a r e c l o s e i n a g e , t h e i m p a c t t h e y h a v e on one a n o t h e r , p a r t i c u l a r l y when b o t h p a r e n t s work o u t s i d e t h e home i s i n t e n s i f i e d . T h e r e a l s o h a s b e e n some i n d i c a t i o n t h a t s i b l i n g s i n two c h i l d f a m i l i e s a r e e m o t i o n a l l y c l o s e r r e g a r d l e s s o f age a n d s e x , t h a n s i b l i n g s i n l a r g e r f a m i l i e s (Bowerman & D o b a s h , 1 9 7 4 ) . 24 A n o t h e r b o n d i n g f a c t o r i s g e o g r a p h i c m o b i l i t y . When f a m i l i e s m o v e , f r i e n d s , s c h o o l s , a n d e n v i r o n m e n t s c h a n g e ; s i b l i n g s p r o v i d e c o n s t a n c y f o r one a n o t h e r , a s w e l l a s e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t a n d n u r t u r a n c e . I n c r e a s e d d a i l y s t r e s s and s o c i e t a l p r e s s u r e s a l s o a f f e c t f a m i l y l i f e . F a m i l y p r o b l e m s s u c h a s : m a r i t a l d i s c o r d , s e p a r a t i o n o r d i v o r c e , s p o u s a l a b u s e , c h i l d a b u s e o r n e g l e c t , a l c o h o l i s m a n d o t h e r s e r i o u s c o n d i t i o n s c a n d e e p l y a f f e c t c h i l d r e n a n d may l e a d t o e m o t i o n a l b o n d i n g . In t h e e n d , l o n g e r l i f e s p a n s a d d t o t h e amount o f t i m e s i b l i n g s h a v e w i t h one a n o t h e r . T h e i r r e l e v a n c e i s e s p e c i a l l y i m p o r t a n t f o r e l d e r l y , s i n g l e women (Cummings & S c h n e i d e r , 1961) a n d i n c r e a s e s t h e l e v e l o f l i f e s a t i s f a c t i o n f o r e l d e r l y , r u r a l women ( M c G h e e , 1 9 8 5 ) . E x a m i n i n g t h e n a t u r e o f n o r m a l a d u l t s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n , s o c i o l o g i c a l i n v e s t i g a t o r s h a v e i d e n t i f i e d some i m p o r t a n t v a r i a b l e s . C i c i r e l l i (1982) c l a i m s t h a t s i b l i n g s a r e c a p a b l e o f i n t i m a c y a n d e x t r a o r d i n a r y u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f one a n o t h e r ' s p r o b l e m s , b u t n o t a l l s i b r e l a t i o n s h i p s r e a c h t h i s l e v e l . In one o f h i s s t u d i e s , C i c i r e l l i ( 1980 ) a s k e d 100 c o l l e g e women t o i n d i c a t e t h e s t r e n g t h o f t h e i r f e e l i n g s f o r e a c h o f t h e i r s i b l i n g s a n d p a r e n t s u s i n g a 7 p o i n t s c a l e r a n g i n g f r o m " n o t a t a l l " t o " v e r y m u c h " . On a v e r a g e , t h e women r a t e d t h e i r s i b l i n g s h i g h e r t h a n b o t h t h e i r m o t h e r s a n d f a t h e r s . T h e y o f t e n f e l t " v e r y c l o s e " t o one p a r t i c u l a r s i b l i n g , " v e r y " 25 f r i e n d l y a n d r e l a x e d , " v e r y " much u n d e r s t o o d a n d f e l t t h e i r v i e w s were " v e r y " s i m i l a r . In t h i s s t u d y , C i c i r e l l i d i d n o t c o l l e c t i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e sex o f t h i s " c l o s e s t " s i b l i n g . H o w e v e r , i n a l a t e r s t u d y ( 1 9 8 2 ) , he r e p o r t s t h a t s i s t e r p a i r s h a v e t h e c l o s e s t a f f e c t i o n a l f a m i l y t i e s , a n d he f o u n d t h a t t h e r e i s a g r o w t h i n c l o s e n e s s i n e a r l y a d u l t h o o d a s s i b s a r e l i k e l y t o be s u p p o r t i v e o f e f f o r t s t o e s t a b l i s h i n d e p e n d e n c e f r o m p a r e n t s a n d t o t a k e on new r o l e s a n d v a l u e s . O t h e r s t u d i e s h a v e a l s o u n c o v e r e d s t r o n g s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s . In A l l a n ' s (1977) s t u d y o f a d u l t s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s , he f o u n d a t e n d e n c y f o r h i s w o r k i n g c l a s s r e s p o n d e n t s t o h a v e a v e r y s t r o n g a n d i m p o r t a n t b o n d w i t h one p a r t i c u l a r s i b l i n g . T h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s were c h a r a c t e r i z e d by more t h a n t h e f r i e n d l i n e s s a n d c o m p a t a b i l i t y o f " s i b l i n g s o l i d a r i t y " . S i b l i n g s d i s p l a y e d a g r e a t e r r a n g e o f i n v o l v e m e n t , i n t e r a c t e d more f o r t h e e n j o y m e n t t h a n t h e o b l i g a t i o n , a n d r e c o g n i z e d one a n o t h e r a s t h e most i m p o r t a n t p e r s o n i n t h e i r s o c i a l n e t w o r k . T h e t e r m " b e s t f r i e n d " was o f t e n u s e d . A common f e a t u r e i d e n t i f i e d was t h a t t h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s o c c u r e d b e t w e e n s a m e - s e x s i b l i n g s a n d a l w a y s w i t h t h e one n e a r e s t i n a g e . Adams ( 1 9 6 8 ) , i n h i s s t u d y o f y o u n g t o m i d d l e a g e d a d u l t s , a s k e d a b o u t f e e l i n g s o f a f f e c t i o n t o w a r d s i b l i n g s . He r e p o r t e d t h a t 48% o f t h o s e i n t e r v i e w e d h a d a h i g h d e g r e e o f c l o s e n e s s t o t h e s i b l i n g c l o s e s t i n a g e . Women w i t h s i s t e r s 26 were c l o s e s t o f a l l , w i t h 60% r e p o r t i n g a h i g h d e g r e e o f c l o s e n e s s . By c o n t r a s t , o n l y 39% o f b r o t h e r p a i r s r e p o r t e d t h e same l e v e l o f c l o s e n e s s . Adams e x p l a i n s t h i s f i n d i n g i n t e r m s o f r o l e s i m i l a r i t y f o r women. An a l t e r n a t i v e e x p l a n a t i o n f o r t h i s f i n d i n g may be f o u n d i n t h e f r i e n d s h i p l i t e r a t u r e where women's f r i e n d s h i p s a r e f o u n d t o be a f f e c t i v e l y r i c h e r ( i e . c l o s e r ) t h a n t h o s e o f men ( D a v i d s o n & P a c k a r d , 1981 ; F i s c h e r & N a r u s , 1 9 8 1 ) . A n o t h e r i m p o r t a n t f i n d i n g was t h a t r e s p o n d e n t s e m p h a s i z e d t h e v o l u n t a r y n a t u r e of t h e i r s i b l i n g c o n t a c t s "-- 70% of s i b l i n g s s a i d t h e y s t a y e d i n c o n t a c t b e c a u s e o f e n j o y m e n t r a t h e r t h a n o b l i g a t i o n . A l d o u s (1978) h a s e x p a n d e d on t h i s phenomena s u g g e s t e d by A d a m s . She m a i n t a i n s t h a t a l t h o u g h c h i l d r e n i n a f a m i l y b e g i n i n a n - o b l i g a t o r y r e l a t i o n s h i p , t h e n a t u r e o f t h e b o n d c h a n g e s d u r i n g a d o l e s c e n c e t o a v o l u n t a r y s t a t u s . She l i s t s f a c t o r s w h i c h h i g h l i g h t t h e v o l u n t a r y i n t e r p e r s o n a l commi tment a s b e i n g : s i m i l a r i t y o f i n t e r e s t s a s i n d i c a t e d by age c l o s e n e s s a n d same g e n d e r s t a t u s , r e s i d e n t i a l p r o x i m i t y , common f a m i l y o b l i g a t i o n s a n d t h e a b s e n c e o f i n v i d i o u s c o m p a r i s o n s . Adams f u r t h e r p r e s e n t e d d a t a t h a t showed s i s t e r s t o m a i n t a i n c o n t a c t a c r o s s v a s t g e o g r a p h i c a l b a r r i e r s by w r i t i n g l e t t e r s , b u t t h a t b r o t h e r s a n d c r o s s - s e x s i b l i n g s more o f t e n l o s t t o u c h when t h e y l i v e d a d i s t a n c e f r o m one a n o t h e r . 27 M o r e r e c e n t r e s e a r c h e r s h a v e f o u n d women w i t h s i s t e r s t o be m o s t c o n c e r n e d w i t h h e l p i n g o t h e r s a n d w i t h m a i n t a i n i n g s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s ( D u n n , . 1 9 8 5 ; T r o l l , 1 9 7 1 ) . T h e y a r e a l s o p r i m a r y p r o v i d e r s o f e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t f o r o t h e r f a m i l y members a n d p l a y a m a j o r r o l e i n k e e p i n g f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s t o g e t h e r o v e r t i m e . In e l d e r l y y e a r s , women p r o v i d e a b a s i c s e n s e o f e m o t i o n a l s e c u r i t y f o r b r o t h e r s a n d draw e v e n c l o s e r t o t h e i r s i s t e r s - - who a p p a r e n t l y h a v e t h e c l o s e s t r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f a l l e l d e r l y s i b l i n g c o m b i n a t i o n s ( C i c i r e l l i , 1977 ; Cummings & S c h n e i d e r , 1 9 6 1 ) . T h e r e i s s u f f i c i e n t e v i d e n c e t o s u g g e s t t h a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p be tween s i s t e r s i s u n i q u e ; t h e y h a v e a h i g h c a p a c i t y f o r i n t i m a c y a n d s o c i o - e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t . C o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e i n f o r m a t i o n on d i f f e r e n c e s i n m a l e a n d f e m a l e f r i e n d s h i p b o n d s ( B e l l , 1981 ; C a l d w e l l & P e p l a u , 1980; F i s c h e r , 1 9 8 1 a ; W o o l s e y , 1984) i t seems c l e a r t h a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p be tween f e m a l e s i b l i n g s i s d i f f e r e n t f r o m t h a t b e t w e e n m a l e s i b l i n g s a n d c r o s s - s e x c o m b i n a t i o n s . T h i s s t u d y b e g i n s t h e e x p l o r a t i o n o f t h i s i m p o r t a n t , y e t n e g l e c t e d r e l a t i o n s h i p . I t i s h o p e d t h a t by e x a m i n i n g t h e n a t u r e o f p o s i t i v e b o n d s b e t w e e n s i s t e r s , more c a n be l e a r n e d a b o u t b a s i c f e m a l e h o m o s o c i a l i t y a n d t h a t by r a i s i n g a w a r e n e s s o f t h e p o t e n t i a l v a l u e i n w o m e n ' s r e l a t i o n s h i p s , t h e y c a n a g a i n be v a l i d a t e d a n d r e v i t a l i z e d . 28 C . S I S T E R S AND FRIENDS S t u d y i n g t h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s a s a f u n d a m e n t a l f e m a l e b o n d , d i s t i n c t f r o m t h e s i b l i n g r e a l m , p r o v i d e s a new f r a m e w o r k o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n , a n d g e n e r a t e s new r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s , s u c h a s : How i s t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s d i f f e r e n t f r o m t h a t b e t w e e n f e m a l e f r i e n d s ? a n d What e f f e c t d o e s h a v i n g a s i s t e r h a v e on a woman 's s u p p o r t n e t w o r k a n d on h e r h o m o s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s ? In a t t e m p t i n g t o a n s w e r t h e s e q u e s t i o n s , a g a i n v e r y l i t t l e p e r t a i n i n g s p e c i f i c a l l y t o women was f o u n d . i n t h e r e s e a r c h l i t e r a t u r e . - O f t e n n e c e s s a r y i n f o r m a t i o n i s m i s s i n g . S t u d i e s on s o c i a l n e t w o r k s , f o r i n s t a n c e , h a v e a t t e m p t e d t o e x a m i n e t h e d i f f e r e n c e s i n f a m i l y a n d f r i e n d s h i p r e l a t i o n s h i p s , h o w e v e r , d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n s a m e - s e x a n d o p p o s i t e - s e x s u p p o r t s y s t e m members a r e u s u a l l y n o t m a d e . P a t t i s o n , L l a m a s a n d H u r d ( 1 9 7 9 ) , f o r . e x a m p l e , a n a l y z e d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f k i n a n d n o n - k i n r e l a t i o n s h i p s , b u t d i d n o t d i s t i n g u i s h t h e n e t w o r k s by s e x , s o no c o n c l u s i o n s c a n be d rawn a b o u t t h e e f f e c t o f s a m e - s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s . F r o m t h e a r e a o f s o c i a l n e t w o r k s , h o w e v e r , g e n e r a l d a t a on t h e n a t u r e o f k i n s h i p a n d f r i e n d s h i p r e l a t i o n s h i p s h a v e b e e n e x a m i n e d . In g e n e r a l , f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s a r e c h a r a c t e r i z e d a s p e r m a n e n t t i e s w h i c h a r e b o u n d by a c e r t a i n amount o f o b l i g a t i o n . F r i e n d s h i p s , u s u a l l y l a c k h i g h l e v e l i n t e r c o n n e c t i o n s w h i c h a r e m a i n t a i n e d by f r e q u e n t a n d r e g u l a r 29 f a m i l y i n t e r a c t i o n s , h o w e v e r , t h e y a r e c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a more s p o n t a n e o u s a n d v o l u n t a r y n a t u r e . T h e y do n o t p r o v i d e t h e s e c u r i t y f o u n d i n f a m i l y a s s o c i a t i o n s , b u t t h e y a l s o c a n p r o v i d e f r e e d o m f r o m t h e f a m i l y c o n s t r a i n t s (La G a i p a , 1 9 8 1 ) . Adams (1967) s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e d i s t i n g u i s h i n g f e a t u r e o f f r i e n d s h i p i s c o n s e n s u s a h i g h d e g r e e o f s i m i l a r i t y i n v a l u e s , i n t e r e s t s a n d a t t i t u d e s ; a n d t h e m a j o r c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f k i n s h i p i s p o s i t i v e c o n c e r n o b l i g a t i o n a n d m u t u a l n e e d c o u p l e d w i t h l o n g t e r m i n v o l v e m e n t , i n t e r e s t a n d a f f e c t i o n . He a d d s t h a t c o n s e n s u s a n d p o s i t i v e c o n c e r n a r e n o t m u t u a l l y e x c l u s i v e a n d t h a t i n t h e c l o s e s t s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s w h e t h e r b e t w e e n p a r e n t - c h i l d , s i b l i n g s o r f r i e n d s a h i g h d e g r e e o f b o t h a r e l i k e l y t o e x i s t . I t a l s o h a s b e e n t h o u g h t t h a t an i m p o r t a n t f e a t u r e o f f r i e n d s h i p i s e q u a l s t a t u s , w h i c h i s r e p l a c e d i n k i n s h i p , by a h i e r a r c h i c a l s y s t e m , p r i m a r i l y r e l a t e d t o i n h e r i t a n c e . I t i s a r g u e d t h o u g h , t h a t i n o u r W e s t e r n t e c h n o l o g i c a l l y a d v a n c e d s o c i e t y , i n h e r i t a n c e d i v i s i o n s a r e u s u a l l y made e q u a l l y b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s , u n l i k e p r e v i o u s g e n e r a t i o n s , when t h e t r a d i t i o n o f p r i m o g e n i t u r e , e n t i t l e d t h e f i r s t - b o r n m a l e t o r e c e i v e a l l t h e f a m i l y ' s r e s o u r c e s . T h i s p r o c e s s h a s b e e n r e p l a c e d by a more e g a l i t a r i a n s y s t e m o f d i s t r i b u t i o n a n d t h e e f f e c t i s r e f l e c t e d i n more e g a l i t a r i a n s i b r e l a t i o n s h i p s (Bank & K a h n , 1982b; L a G a i p a , 1 9 8 1 ) . 30 In f a c t , i t seems t h a t t h e d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n t h e l i n e s o f k i n s h i p a n d n o n k i n s h i p a r e e v e n l e s s m a r k e d when c o n s i d e r i n g s i b l i n g a n d p e e r r e l a t i o n s . A s p r e v i o u s l y s u g g e s t e d , t h e r e i s a l a r g e v o l u n t a r y c o m p o n e n t t o a d u l t s i b b o n d s ( A l d o u s , 1 9 7 7 ) , a n d t h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s o f t e n t a k e on an e g a l i t a r i a n n a t u r e a s s i b l i n g s a p p r o a c h a d u l t h o o d . An i n d i c a t i o n o f t h i s o v e r l a p i s a l s o r e f l e c t e d i n o u r l a n g u a g e . T h e g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y o f t h e t e r m " s i s t e r h o o d " i s one e x a m p l e , a s w e l l a s r e p o r t s o f women who name t h e i r s i s t e r s " b e s t f r i e n d s " ( A l l a n , 1 9 7 7 ) , a n d women, who, when s p e a k i n g o f a g o o d f r i e n d , s a y , " S h e ' s j u s t l i k e a s i s t e r " . I t a p p e a r s t h a t , a s L a G a i p a (1981) s u g g e s t s " t h e b o u n d a r i e s o f f r i e n d s h i p a n d k i n s h i p i n w e s t e r n s o c i e t y a r e d i s i n t e g r a t i n g , i f t h e y r e a l l y e v e r e x i s t e d " ( p . 8 6 ) . T o f u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n f r i e n d s h i p a n d k i n s h i p , C l a r k a n d L a G a i p a (1979) a t t e m p t e d t o a n a l y z e t h e e x t e n t o f f r i e n d s h i p b e h a v i o r i n t h e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h e y s t u d i e d a s a m p l e o f 213 a d o l e s c e n t m a l e s a n d f e m a l e s u s i n g an i n s t r u m e n t d e v e l o p e d a n d v a l i d a t e d by L a G a i p a ( 1 9 7 7 ) . T h e F r i e n d s h i p E x p e c t a n c y I n v e n t o r y m e a s u r e d s i x d i m e n s i o n s o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n c l u d i n g : s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e , a u t h e n t i c i t y , h e l p i n g b e h a v i o r , p o s i t i v e r e g a r d , s i m i l a r i t y a n d e m p a t h y . T h e y a s k e d m a l e a n d f e m a l e a d o l e s c e n t s t o r a t e t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h b r o t h e r s , s i s t e r s a n d s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s . 31 T h e i r f i n d i n g s showed t h a t o p p o s i t e - s e x s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s were w e a k e r t h a n s a m e - s e x s i b l i n g a n d f r i e n d r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n a l l a r e a s , b u t t h e y c o n c l u d e d t h a t s a m e - s e x s i b l i n g s were a s i g n i f i c a n t p a r t o f t h e s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s o f a d o l e s c e n t s ' p a r t i c u l a r i l y s t r o n g b e t w e e n b r o t h e r s . A p p a r e n t l y b o y s f e l t a s p o s i t i v e l y t o w a r d s t h e i r b r o t h e r s a s t o t h e i r b e s t , s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s i n a l l t h e a r e a s m e a s u r e d . F o r g i r l s t h o u g h , t h e a u t h o r s f o u n d a d i f f e r e n t p a t t e r n . T h e y f o u n d t h a t g i r l s showed more i n v e s t m e n t i n f r i e n d s h i p w i t h s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s o u t s i d e t h e f a m i l y t h a n w i t h s i s t e r s , b e c a u s e f r i e n d s were r a t e d h i g h e r i n t h e a r e a s o f a u t h e n t i c i t y , empathy a n d s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e . On t h e o t h e r d i m e n s i o n s no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e were f o u n d b e t w e e n s i s t e r s a n d f r i e n d s . T h e a u t h o r s . e x p l a i n e d t h a t t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n t h e s e f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s was due t o t h e n a t u r e o f a d o l e s c e n c e t y p i c a l l y a p e r i o d when g i r l s l o o k b e y o n d t h e f a m i l y f o r c l o s e , " b e s t - f r i e n d " r e l a t i o n s h i p s . H o w e v e r , i t seems more l i k e l y t h a t t h i s f i n d i n g i s an a r t i f a c t o f t h e s a m p l e s u s e d . I n c l u d e d i n t h e s a m p l e o f 117 f e m a l e s were 48 g i r l s f r o m a c o n v e n t - b o a r d i n g s c h o o l . T h i s was n o t m a t c h e d i n t h e m a l e s a m p l e . I t seems l i k e l y t h a t when g i r l s a r e away f r o m home t h e i n t i m a c y b e t w e e n s i s t e r s w o u l d be r e d u c e d a n d p e r h a p s r e p l a c e d by a v a i l a b l e f e m a l e f r i e n d s . 32 T h e r e i s a l s o a n o t h e r w e a k n e s s i n t h e s t u d y . In u s i n g t h e F r i e n d s h i p E x p e c t a n c y I n v e n t o r y , t h e a u t h o r s m e a s u r e d s u b j e c t s ' r e l a t i o n s h i p e x p e c t a t i o n s r a t h e r t h a n a c t u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p b e h a v i o r s . T h e r e i s a d i f f e r e n c e i n a s k i n g i f one e x p e c t s a f r i e n d t o h e l p d u r i n g a c r i s i s , a n d i n a s k i n g i f a f r i e n d a c t u a l l y h e l p s d u r i n g a c r i s i s . I t w o u l d seem f o r p u r p o s e s o f t h i s s t u d y , a s k i n g f o r a c t u a l b e h a v i o r w o u l d p r o v i d e more i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e a c t u a l n a t u r e o f t h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . As w e l l , M c C a r t h y (1981) r e p o r t s t h a t c o g n i t i v e d i s t o r t i o n s a r e l e s s l i k e l y when c a l l i n g f o r b e h a v i o r a l s e l f - r e p o r t s , t h a n when a s k i n g f o r r e p o r t s o f a c o g n i t i v e o r a f f e c t i v e n a t u r e . T h e p r e s e n t s t u d y e x a m i n e s t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n women 's s a m e - s e x s i b l i n g a n d f r i e n d r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n a l y z i n g t h e e x t e n t o f f r i e n d s h i p b e h a v i o r i n t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p u s i n g L a G a i p a ' s F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y , b u t t h e f o r m w h i c h r a t e s a c t u a l b e h a v i o r h a s b e e n u s e d . 33 CHAPTER I I I ; METHODOLOGY T h i s s t u d y c o n s i s t e d o f two p a r t s . T h e f i r s t p a r t , u s e d q u a n t i t a t i v e c o m p a r i s o n s t o t e s t h y p o t h e s e s a n d t h e s e c o n d p a r t e m p l o y e d a q u a l i t a t i v e a n d d e s c r i p t i v e i n t e r v i e w t e c h n i q u e t o e x p l o r e more g e n e r a l r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s . A . THE Q U A N T I T A T I V E STUDY: INSTRUMENTS & HYPOTHESES  1. S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e ( A p p e n d i x I ) . An a b b r e v i a t e d f o r m o f t h e o r i g i n a l S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e (SSQ) d e v e l o p e d by S a r a s o n , L e v i n e , Basham a n d S a r a s o n (1983) was u s e d a s an o b j e c t i v e i n s t r u m e n t t o draw a s a m p l e f o r t h i s s t u d y . T h i s q u e s t i o n n a i r e was d e s i g n e d t o i n v e s t i g a t e two a s p e c t s o f s o c i a l s u p p o r t : t h e p e r c e i v e d s o c i a l s u p p o r t s i n a p e r s o n ' s l i f e a n d t h e d e g r e e o f s u p p o r t s a t i s f a c t i o n . E a c h i t e m on t h e 2 7 - i t e m t e s t a s k e d r e s p o n d e n t s t o a) l i s t t h e p e o p l e t o whom t h e y c o u l d t u r n and on whom t h e y c o u l d r e l y i n g i v e n c i r c u m s t a n c e s a n d t o b) i n d i c a t e how s a t i s f i e d t h e y were w i t h t h e s e s u p p o r t s on a s c a l e o f " 1 - v e r y d i s s a t i s f i e d " t o " 6 - v e r y s a t i s f i e d " . The number s c o r e (N) f o r e a c h i t e m o f t h e SSQ was t h e number o f s u p p o r t p e r s o n s l i s t e d a n d t h e s a t i s f a c t i o n s c o r e (S) was t h e number c o r r e s p o n d i n g t o t h e s c a l e o f s a t i s f a c t i o n . T h e o v e r a l l N a n d S s c o r e s were o b t a i n e d by d i v i d i n g t h e sum o f N o r S s c o r e s f o r a l l t h e i t e m s by t h e number o f i t e m s . The a u t h o r s f o u n d , t h e N s c o r e s r a n g e d f r o m 2 . 9 2 t o 5 . 4 6 w i t h a mean o f 4 . 2 5 when t h e y a d m i n i s t e r e d t h e S . S . Q . t o a 34 sample of 600 c o l l e g e students. They r e p o r t e d an i n t e r n a l r e l i a b i l i t y of .97 (between ite m s ) . The S scores ranged from 5.12 to 5.57 with a mean of 5.38. They again r e p o r t e d a high l e v e l of i n t e r n a l c o n s i s t e n c y . F a c t o r analyses f o r N and f o r S scores showed evidence that one strong f a c t o r u n d e r l i e d each of the two SSQ scores and that they represented d i f f e r e n t dimensions of the general concept. The t e s t - r e t e s t c o r r e l a t i o n s f o r N and S scores over a 4 week i n t e r v a l were .90 and .83 r e s p e c t i v e l y . Along with the high l e v e l of r e l i a b i l i t y , the authors r e p o r t e d that the SSQ d i d not seem to be h i g h l y b i a s e d by the s o c i a l d e s i r a b i l i t y response set and i n d i c a t e d t h at c o r r e l a t i n g the SSQ with other p e r s o n a l i t y measures gave g r e a t e r understanding to the concept of s o c i a l support. During p i l o t t e s t i n g of the SSQ f o r t h i s study, i t was d i s c o v e r e d that students were much more w i l l i n g to answer the t e s t i f i t r e q u i r e d r e l a t i v e l y l i t t l e time. Because the intended use of t h i s instrument, f o r t h i s study, was p r i m a r i l y as a s c r e e n i n g device to f i n d women who had s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , and because a l l 27 items r e q u i r e d 30-45 minutes, on average, to complete, i t was decided to reduce the number of items from 27 to 9 items. The 9 items were s e l e c t e d to represent the areas of s o c i a l support tapped by Sarason et a l . i n t h e i r o r i g i n a l q u e s t i o n n a i r e . T h e r e f o r e 2-3 items from the d i f f e r e n t areas: support d u r i n g c r i s i s , support 35 d e p e n d a b i l i t y , u n c o n d i t i o n a l s u p p o r t a n d a c c e p t a n c e , a n d s u p p o r t i n f o r m s o f l o v e a n d a d v o c a c y were c h o s e n . R e c o g n i z i n g t h e i m p l i c a t i o n s s h o r t e n i n g an i n s t r u m e n t h a s on i t s p s y c h o m e t r i c p r o p e r t i e s , c a r e f u l c o n s i d e r a t i o n was g i v e n t o b o t h t h e a d v a n t a g e s a n d d i s a d v a n t a g e s o f t a k i n g t h i s a c t i o n . I t was d e c i d e d t h a t t h e b e n e f i t s d e r i v e d f r o m s h o r t e n i n g t h e t e s t , ( i e , t h a t s t u d e n t s were more w i l l i n g t o a n s w e r t h e t e s t when i t r e q u i r e d o n l y 10 -15 m i n u t e s ; t h a t t h e y were more l i k e l y t o c o m p l e t e a l l t h e i t e m s , a n d t o v o l u n t e e r t o be i n t e r v i e w e d ) o u t w e i g h t e d t h e l o s s o f e s t a b l i s h e d r e l i a b i l i t y - - p a r t i c u l a r l y s i n c e t h e t e s t was u s e d m o s t l y a s a s c r e e n i n g i n s t r u m e n t . A n o t h e r p a g e w i t h an a d d i t i o n a l two i t e m s was a l s o a t t a c h e d t o t h e r e v i s e d S S Q , a s k i n g r e s p o n d e n t s t o l i s t s e x a n d a g e o f s i b l i n g s , a n d t o i n d i c a t e i f t h e y were i n t e r e s t e d i n f u r t h e r p a r t i c i p a t i o n by g i v i n g t h e i r f i r s t name a n d t e l e p h o n e n u m b e r . T h e s e i t e m s a l o n g w i t h t h e m a t e r i a l f r o m t h e r e v i s e d SSQ p r o v i d e d i n f o r m a t i o n a s t o t h e number o f women i n 110 who h a d s i s t e r s , t h e number who h a d s u p p o r t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h s i s t e r s a n d t h e i r g e n e r a l l e v e l o f s u p p o r t s a t i s f a c t i o n . I t was d e c i d e d t h a t o n l y women s a t i s f i e d w i t h t h e i r s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s ( i e . w i t h s a t i s f a c t i o n s c o r e s o f 4 o r h i g h e r on t h e SSQ) w o u l d be i n c l u d e d i n t h e m a j o r s t u d y . T h i s r e s t r i c t i o n seemed n e c e s s a r y c o n s i d e r i n g t h e r e s e a r c h 36 f r a m e w o r k - - c o n c e r n e d w i t h t h e n a t u r e o f p o s i t i v e a n d s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , t h e i r c o m p a r i s o n t o p o s i t i v e f e m a l e f r i e n d s h i p r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n d t h e i n c i d e n t s w h i c h f a c i l i t a t e a s u p p o r t i v e a n d s a t i s f y i n g s i s t e r b o n d . T h o s e women who i n c l u d e d a s i s t e r a n d a f e m a l e f r i e n d i n t h e i r s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s , r a t e d t h e i r n e t w o r k s a s s a t i s f y i n g a n d a l s o i n d i c a t e d f u r t h e r i n t e r e s t i n t h e s t u d y met t h e s e l e c t i o n c r i t e r i a f o r c o n t i n u i n g i n t h e s t u d y . Of t h e s e r e s p o n d e n t s , 25 were r a n d o m l y c h o s e n . T h e y were c a l l e d a n d i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r v i e w t i m e s were s c h e d u l e d . 2 . F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y ( A p p e n d i x I I ) . D u r i n g t h e i n t e r v i e w , e a c h v o l u n t e e r was a s k e d t o r a t e h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h h e r s i s t e r a n d h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h a s a m e - s e x f r i e n d u s i n g a p a p e r - p e n c i l m e a s u r e . A s i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o d i r e c t l y c o m p a r e a n d s t a t i s t i c a l l y a n a l y z e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n a f a m i l y a n d a f r i e n d s h i p r e l a t i o n s h i p ( L a G a i p a , 1 9 8 1 ) , i t was d e c i d e d t h a t t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w o u l d be a n a l y z e d i n t e r m s o f f r i e n d s h i p c o n t e n t ( C l a r k & L a G a i p a , 1 9 7 9 ) . T h e m e a s u r i n g i n s t r u m e n t u s e d was a v e r s i o n o f L a G a i p a 1 s (1977) F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y ( F I ) . T h i s i n v e n t o r y was d e v e l o p e d o u t o f t h e c o n t e n t a n a l y s i s o f o v e r 1800 f r i e n d s h i p s t a t e m e n t s t o i d e n t i f y m a j o r f r i e n d s h i p t h e m e s . T h e s e v e n m a j o r themes w h i c h he i s o l a t e d w e r e : 1. S e l f - d i s c l o s u r e - f e e l i n g f r e e t o e x p r e s s a n d r e v e a l 37 p e r s o n a l a n d i n t i m a t e i n f o r m a t i o n . 2 . A u t h e n t i c i t y - o p e n n e s s and h o n e s t y i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p ; b e i n g r e a l , g e n u i n e a n d s p o n t a n e o u s . 3 . H e l p a n d s u p p o r t - e x p r e s s i n g c o n c e r n f o r o n e ' s w e l l b e i n g a n d g i v i n g h e l p r e a d i l y w i t h o u t b e i n g a s k e d ; p r o v i d i n g p s y c h o l o g i c a l s u p p o r t . 4 . P o s i t i v e r e g a r d - p r o v i d i n g e g o r e i n f o r c e m e n t ; e n h a n c i n g o n e ' s f e e l i n g o f s e l f w o r t h ; t r e a t i n g one a s d e s e r v i n g o f . r e s p e c t a n d a s an i m p o r t a n t , w o r t h w h i l e p e r s o n . 5 . S t r e n g t h o f c h a r a c t e r - s t r i v i n g t o a c h i e v e a n d c o n f o r m t o t h e o b j e c t i v e v a l u e s y s t e m o f t h e s o c i e t y . 6 . S i m i l a r i t y - p o s s e s s i n g s i m i l a r p o i n t s o f v i e w ; a g r e e i n g on c o n t r o v e r s i a l i s s u e s ; p o s s e s s i n g s i m i l a r a t t i t u d e s a n d i n t e r e s t s . 7 . E m p a t h i c u n d e r s t a n d i n g - i n t e r p r e t i n g a c c u r a t e l y t h e f e e l i n g s o f t h e o t h e r p e r s o n ; u n d e r s t a n d i n g how one r e a l l y f e e l s ; r e a l l y l i s t e n i n g t o what one h a s t o s a y . T h e s e 7 m a j o r f a c t o r s were i s o l a t e d by f o u r s e p a r a t e f a c t o r a n a l y s e s u s i n g t h e p r i n c i p a l c o m p o n e n t t e c h n i q u e w i t h r o t a t i o n t o s i m p l e s t r u c t u r e . S u b s e q u e n t f a c t o r a n a l y t i c s t u d i e s h a v e r e p l i c a t e d L a G a i p a ' s o r i g i n a l f i n d i n g s a n d g e n e r a l l y f r o m 4 t o 7 f a c t o r s were t y p i c a l l y f o u n d f o r d i f f e r e n t l e v e l s o f f r i e n d s h i p (La G a i p a , 1 9 6 9 ) . The r e l i a b i l i t y a n d v a l i d i t y o f t h e F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y a n d t h e f r i e n d s h i p d i m e n s i o n s h a v e b e e n t e s t e d i n v a r i o u s 38 s t u d i e s . The f a c t o r s , t h e m s e l v e s , h a v e been i d e n t i f i e d a c r o s s v a r i o u s p o p u l a t i o n s - - c h i l d r e n ( B i g e l o w & L a G a i p a , 1 9 8 0 ) , a d o l e s c e n t s ( C l a r k & L a G a i p a , 1979) a n d i n " n o r m a l " a n d " p s y c h i a t r i c " a d u l t p o p u l a t i o n s ( E n g e l h a r t , L o c k h a r t & L a G a i p a , 1 9 7 5 ) . T h e v a l i d i t y o f t h e i t e m s was t e s t e d by H e i l b r o n n (1973) who c o n d u c t e d a l o n g t i t u d i n a l s t u d y c o m p a r i n g t h e f r i e n d s h i p i t e m s a n d t h e "amount o f f r i e n d s h i p r e w a r d s " b e t w e e n f r i e n d s a n d n o n - f r i e n d s . He f o u n d t h a t a l l t h e f r i e n d s h i p d i m e n s i o n s d i s c r i m i n a t e d f r i e n d s f r o m n o n - f r i e n d s i n t e r m s o f r e c e i v e d r e w a r d s . T o t e s t t h e q u e s t i o n o f w h e t h e r i n d i v i d u a l s c h o o s e f r i e n d s a n d do n o t c h o o s e f r i e n d s i n t e r m s o f t h e i d e n t i f i e d d i m e n s i o n s , W e n g r e n i u k (1971) t e s t e d a C a n a d i a n , m a l e c o l l e g e s a m p l e , a n d f o u n d a s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n b e t w e e n most a n d l e a s t c h o s e n f r i e n d s a n d t h e f r i e n d s h i p s c a l e s ( F = 1 2 . 1 6 , P < . 0 1 ) . I n d i v i d u a l l y , t h e most d i s c r i m i n a t i n g i t e m was " h e l p i n g " , f o l l o w e d by " a u t h e n t i c i t y " , " s i m i l a r i t y " , " p o s i t i v e r e g a r d " . " S e l f - d i s c l o s u r e " a n d " s t r e n g t h o f c h a r a c t e r " were l e a s t d i s c r i m i n a t i n g . In a n o t h e r s t u d y L a G a i p a (1972) f o u n d t h a t p e r s o n a l i t y f a c t o r s were r e l a t i v e l y u n i m p o r t a n t a s d e t e r m i n a n t s o f f r i e n d s h i p v a l u e s . By a d m i n i s t e r i n g a v a r i e t y o f p e r s o n a l i t y t e s t s a n d t h e f r i e n d s h i p s c a l e s t o a s a m p l e o f 2651 s u b j e c t s a n d c o m p u t i n g t h e d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n means on t h e p e r s o n a l i t y m e a s u r e s ; he f o u n d t h e amount o f v a r i a n c e a c c o u n t e d f o r , by 39 t h e p e r s o n a l i t y t e s t s , was s e l d o m o v e r 10%. T h e p r e d i c t i v e v a l i d i t y o f t h e f r i e n d s h i p s c a l e s was a s s e s s e d by L i s c h e r o n a n d L a G a i p a ( 1 9 7 1 ) . T h e y m e a s u r e d 76 m a l e c o l l e g e roommates on t h e d e g r e e o f i m p o r t a n c e a s c r i b e d t o m a i n t a i n i n g a " c l o s e f r i e n d s h i p " a n d ' t h e d e g r e e t o w h i c h t h e f r i e n d ' s b e h a v i o r was c h a r a c t e r i z e d by t h e 7 f r i e n d s h i p i t e m s , a t 2 s e p a r a t e t i m e s - - a f t e r 5 -6 weeks o f a c q u a i n t a n c e a n d a f t e r 6 m o n t h s o f s h a r i n g a r o o m . T h e c o r r e l a t i o n b e t w e e n t h e " d e g r e e o f i m p o r t a n c e " a n d l e v e l o f f r i e n d s h i p r a n g e d f r o m r = . 6 7 f o r S i m i l a r i t y t o r = . 3 4 f o r S t r e n g t h o f C h a r a c t e r ( a l l s i g n i f i c a n t a t .01 l e v e l ) , s u g g e s t i n g t h a t t h e g r o w t h o f f r i e n d s h i p c o u l d be p r e d i c t e d u s i n g t h e f r i e n d s h i p s c a l e . U s i n g 5 s t a t e m e n t s t o t a p e a c h d i m e n s i o n , L a G a i p a c o m p i l e d 35 i t e m s w h i c h f o r m e d t h e b a s i s f o r h i s F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r i e s . By c h a n g i n g t h e s p e c i f i c i n s t r u c t i o n s a n d r a t i n g f o r m a t s , h i s m e a s u r e c a n be a d a p t e d t o i n v e s t i g a t e d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f f r i e n d s h i p . D u r i n g t h i s s t u d y t h e F r i e n d s h i p B e h a v i o r I n v e n t o r y was u s e d t o c o m p a r e t h e a c t u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p b e h a v i o r s o f a w o m a n ' s s i s t e r a n d a f e m a l e f r i e n d . T h i s was d o n e by a s k i n g e a c h woman t o r a t e t h e 35 i t e m s on a L i k e r t - t y p e 5 p o i n t s c a l e , i n d i c a t i n g how o f t e n a b e h a v i o r was p r e s e n t i n h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h h e r s i s t e r , t h e n t o r a t e t h e same 35 i t e m s f o r s u p p o r t i v e s a m e - s e x f r i e n d r e l a t i o n s h i p . To c o u n t e r b a l a n c e a n y orde ' r e f f e c t s , h a l f t h e women r a t e d t h e i r 40 s i s t e r f i r s t , then t h e i r f r i e n d ; t he o t h e r h a l f r a t e d t h e i r f r i e n d , then t h e i r s i s t e r . The measure compared a women's r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h her s i s t e r and her r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h a female f r i e n d i n the 7 above mentioned a r e a s . The s t a t i s t i c a l a n a l y s i s of the da t a i n v o l v e d u s i n g t - t e s t s t o measure the s i g n i f i c a n c e of the d i f f e r e n c e between means of the two groups i n t h e s e seven a r e a s . B. RESEARCH HYPOTHESES The f o l l o w i n g hypotheses were d e s i g n e d t o h e l p e x p l o r e the q u e s t i o n s : Are s i s t e r s an i m p o r t a n t p a r t of a woman's supp o r t network? Are they l i s t e d more f r e q u e n t l y than b r o t h e r s ? On what di m e n s i o n s i s the r e l a t i o n s h i p a woman has w i t h her s i s t e r d i f f e r e n t from her r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h a female f r i e n d ? 1. I t i s h y p o t h e s i z e d t h a t when women who have s i s t e r s a r e compared t o women who have b r o t h e r s p r o p o r t i o n a t e l y more s i s t e r s than b r o t h e r s w i l l be l i s t e d among the sup p o r t network members on the S o c i a l Support Q u e s t i o n n a i r e . 2. A l s o , f o l l o w i n g the t h e o r i e s of h o m o s o c i a l i t y ( B e r n a r d , Smith-Rosenberg) i t i s h y p o t h e s i z e d t h a t the r e l a t i o n s h i p between s i s t e r s and female f r i e n d s w i l l be h i g h l y s i m i l a r and t h e r e w i l l be no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between the means of the f r i e n d s h i p d i m e n s i o n s measured by the F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y . 41 3 . A l t e r n a t e l y , c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e f i n d i n g s o f C l a r k & L a G a i p a i t i s h y p o t h e s i z e d t h a t a d u l t women w i l l r a t e t h e i r f e m a l e f r i e n d s s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r on m e a s u r e s o f " a u t h e n t i c i t y " , " s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e " , a n d " e m p a t h i c u n d e r s t a n d i n g " on t h e F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y , b u t t h a t no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e w i l l be f o u n d on " p o s i t i v e r e g a r d " , " h e l p a n d s u p p o r t " a n d " s i m i l a r i t y " . 4 . C o n s i s t e n t w i t h A d a m s ' s f i n d i n g s ( 1 9 6 8 ) , i t i s h y p o t h e s i z e d t h a t women w i l l r a t e t h e i r f r i e n d s s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r t h a n t h e i r s i s t e r s on t h e r a t i n g o f " s i m i l a r i t y " . In a d d i t i o n t o t h e s e s t a t i s t i c a l h y p o t h e s e s , an i n t e r v i e w p r o v i d e d a f o c u s f o r e x p l o r i n g t h e s i s t e r b o n d i n an o p e n - e n d e d a n d d e s c r i p t i v e m a n n e r . 42 C . THE Q U A L I T A T I V E STUDY; THE C R I T I C A L INCIDENT TECHNIQUE  1. D e v e l o p m e n t a n d A p p l i c a t i o n . As i n d i c a t e d i n t h e p r e v i o u s s e c t i o n s , t h e s t u d y o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n s i s t e r s h a s n o t b e e n s p e c i f i c a l l y e x a m i n e d . T h i s s i t u a t i o n n e c e s s i t a t e d t h e u s e o f a m e t h o d o f d a t a c o l l e c t i o n t h a t w o u l d be d e s c r i p t i v e a n d e x p l o r a t o r y . The C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e ( F l a n a g a n , 1954) p r o v i d e d a m e t h o d w h i c h s a t i s f i e d t h e d e s c r i p t i v e c r i t e r i o n b e c a u s e i t a c c e s s e d d a t a i n an e x p l o r a t o r y a n d o p e n - e n d e d m a n n e r . T h i s t e c h n i q u e was d e v i s e d by F l a n a g a n a s a s e t o f p r o c e d u r e s f o r c o l l e c t i n g d i r e c t o b s e r v a t i o n s o f human b e h a v i o r i n s u c h a way a s t o f a c i l i t a t e t h e i r p o t e n t i a l u s e f u l n e s s i n s o l v i n g p r a c t i c a l p r o b l e m s a n d d e v e l o p i n g b r o a d p s y c h o l o g i c a l p r i n c i p l e s . I t was d e v e l o p e d f r o m e a r l y a v i a t i o n s t u d i e s i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s A i r F o r c e d u r i n g W o r l d War II f o r p u r p o s e s o f s e l e c t i n g a n d t r a i n i n g p i l o t s a n d combat l e a d e r s . I t h a s s i n c e p r o v i d e d a u s e f u l m e t h o d o l o g y f o r a w i d e v a r i e t y o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l s t u d i e s . The p r o c e d u r e c o n s i s t s o f g a t h e r i n g a s e r i e s o f s p e c i f i c e v e n t s t h a t f a c i l i t a t e d o r h i n d e r e d a c e r t a i n b e h a v i o r a l o u t c o m e f r o m i n d i v i d u a l s who a r e i n p o s i t i o n s t o make s u c h o b s e r v a t i o n s . The d a t a , o r i n c i d e n t s , a r e t h e n s u b j e c t e d t o an i n d u c t i v e c a t e g o r i z a t i o n p r o c e s s w h i c h e n h a n c e s t h e m e a n i n g . T h i s i s d o n e by s o r t i n g t h e i n c i d e n t s i n t o d e s c r i p t i v e c a t e g o r i e s . New i n c i d e n t s a r e a d d e d , r e f i n i n g a n d 43 r e s o r t i n g c a t e g o r i e s a s n e e d e d u n t i l a l l d a t a a r e s u m m a r i z e d a n d d e s c r i b e d i n an e f f i c i e n t m a n n e r . I n t e r v i e w i n g i s c o m p l e t e d when e n o u g h i n f o r m a t i o n i s c o m p i l e d t o meet F l a n a g a n ' s c r i t e r i o n o f r e d u n d a n c y i n w h i c h r e l a t i o n s h i p d e s c r i p t i o n s a n d c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s b e g i n t o seem s i m i l a r a n d p a t t e r n s become r e c o g n i z a b l e . T h i s i s t h e m e t h o d o f c o n f i r m i n g c o n t e n t v a l i d i t y a c c o r d i n g t o F l a n a g a n . He s u g g e s t s t h a t t h i s c r i t e r i o n o f r e d u n d a n c y o c c u r s a f t e r a p p r o x i m a t e l y 100 i n c i d e n t s . F l a n a g a n i d e n t i f i e d 3 p r o b l e m s i n c a t e g o r i z a t i o n : 1) s e l e c t i n g a f r a m e o f r e f e r e n c e t h a t w i l l be most u s e f u l i n d e s c r i b i n g d a t a , 2) d e v e l o p i n g a s e t o f m a j o r a r e a a n d s u b -a r e a h e a d i n g s a n d 3) s e l e c t i n g t h e l e v e l o r l e v e l s o f s p e c i f i c i t y - g e n e r a l i t y t o u s e i n r e p o r t i n g t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s . T h e r e f o r e , he o u t l i n e s s e v e r a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s w h i c h a i d i n e s t a b l i s h i n g h e a d i n g s f o r m a j o r a r e a s a n d i n s t a t i n g c r i t i c a l r e q u i r e m e n t s . T h e s e a r e : 1) t h e h e a d i n g s s h o u l d i n d i c a t e c l e a r c u t a n d l o g i c a l o r g a n i z a t i o n . 2) t h e t i t l e s s h o u l d c o n v e y m e a n i n g i n t h e m s e l v e s , 3) t h e l i s t o f s t a t e m e n t s s h o u l d be h o m o g e n e o u s , 4) t h e h e a d i n g s s h o u l d be o f t h e same l e v e l o f i m p o r t a n c e , 5) t h e y s h o u l d be c o m p r e h e n s i v e a n d c o v e r a l l i n c i d e n t s h a v i n g s i g n i f i c a n t f r e q u e n c i e s , a n d 6) t h e y s h o u l d be s u c h t h a t f i n d i n g s w i l l be e a s i l y a p p l i e d 44 a n d m a x i m a l l y u s e f u l . F l a n a g a n a l s o a d v i s e s s u b m i t t i n g t h e i n c i d e n t s t o i n d e p e n d e n t r a t e r s f o r c a t e g o r i z a t i o n t o c h e c k r e l i a b i l i t y . He p r e d i c t s t h a t i f c a t e g o r i e s a r e w e l l f o r m e d a n d t h e r a t e r s s u f f i c i e n t l y t r a i n e d , a h i g h d e g r e e o f a g r e e m e n t ( i . e . r e l i a b i l i t y c o e f f i c i e n t o f . 7 5 o r more ) c a n be e x p e c t e d . The C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e h a s b e e n f o r m a l l y r e v i e w e d on a number o f r e l i a b i l i t y a n d v a l i d i t y c h e c k s by A n d e r s s o n a n d N i l s s o n ( 1 9 6 4 ) . T h e y a n a l y z e d t h e r e l i a b i l i t y o f c o l l e c t i n g p r o c e d u r e , t h e s a t u r a t i o n a n d c o m p r e h e n s i v e n e s s o f t h e i n c i d e n t s , t h e c o n t r o l o f c a t e g o r i z a t i o n , t h e a n a l y s i s o f c o n t e n t o f t r a i n i n g l i t e r a t u r e a n d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f s u b - c a t e g o r i e s , a n d c o n c l u d e d t h a t t h e c h e c k s were v e r y s u p p o r t i v e .of t h e C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e . T h e y f o u n d t h a t i t v e r y a c c u r a t e l y r e p r e s e n t e d t h e i n f o r m a t i o n i t i n t e n d e d t o m e a s u r e . 2 . R a t i o n a l e a n d R e s e a r c h Q u e s t i o n s . T h e r a t i o n a l e f o r c h o o s i n g t h e C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e was t o a l l o w e x p l o r a t i o n o f t h i s new a r e a o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n . Due t o t h e amount o f i n f o r m a t i o n g e n e r a l l y a c c e s s e d w i t h t h i s t y p e o f m e t h o d o l o g y t h e d e s i g n was l i m i t e d t o l o o k a t f a c i l i t a t i v e i n c i d e n t s o n l y , a n d n o t h i n d e r i n g o n e s . A l t h o u g h t h i s l i m i t e d t h e s t u d y c o n s i d e r a b l y , t h e d e c i s i o n was made t o n a r r o w t h e s u b j e c t m a t t e r a n d t o do a t h o r o u g h i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f t h e c h o s e n a r e a , w i t h i n t h i s 45 p o t e n t i a l l y massive study. A d d i t i o n a l r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s were posed to probe f o r d e t a i l s of the nature of the s u p p o r t i v e and s a t i s f y i n g s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p , which were not addressed i n the other segments of the study. Research Questions 1 . What are the general q u a l i t i e s of a s u p p o r t i v e sis'ter r e l a t i o n s h i p ? 2. How i s the s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p unique? How does i t d i f f e r from female f r i e n d s h i p ? from mother/daughter r e l a t i o n s h i p s ? and from cros s - s e x f a m i l y t i e s ? 3. What are the i n c i d e n t s or f a c t o r s which f a c i l i t a t e a su p p o r t i v e and s a t i s f y i n g bond between s i s t e r s ? The i n f o r m a t i o n d e r i v e d from Research Question #3 was analyzed using the C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t Technique and f o l l o w e d Flanagan's method f o r c a t e g o r i z i n g and a n a l y z i n g i n f o r m a t i o n . Research Questions #1 and #2 were used to supplement the r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s and were recorded as a d d i t i o n a l e x p l o r a t o r y i n f o r m a t i o n . 46 3. The I n t e r v i e w . The i n t e r v i e w i t s e l f began w i t h an i n t r o d u c t o r y statement about the n a t u r e of the s t u d y . "There has not been much r e s e a r c h done on . the r e l a t i o n s h i p between s i s t e r s , so I am d o i n g e x p l o r a t o r y r e s e a r c h i n t h i s a r e a . D u r i n g t h i s i n t e r v i e w I would l i k e t o know what your e x p e r i e n c e of h a v i n g a s i s t e r i s l i k e f o r you. I w i l l be e x a m i n i n g t h r e e main a r e a s , but would l i k e you t o f e e l f r e e t o add any i n s i g h t , comments or q u e s t i o n s t h a t you have." P a r t i c i p a n t s were a s s u r e d of c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y and p e r m i s s i o n t o t a p e - r e c o r d was o b t a i n e d . Some demographic i n f o r m a t i o n was c o l l e c t e d - i e . age of s u b j e c t and of the s i s t e r w i t h whom she has the c l o s e s t , most s u p p o r t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p , t h e i r m a r i t a l s t a t u s e s , whether they have c h i l d r e n , whether they l i v e t o g e t h e r , t h e i r s o c i o - e c o n o m i c s t a t u s and e t h n i c i t y . Then the i n t e r v i e w i n g began. 1. To b e g i n , p l e a s e d e s c r i b e your r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h your s i s t e r - How o f t e n do you c o n t a c t one a n o t h e r ? What do you do when t o g e t h e r ? Have you always been c l o s e or has your r e l a t i o n s h i p changed over t i m e ? In what ways i s your r e l a t i o n s h i p s u p p o r t i v e ? 2. Next, I would l i k e you t o f o c u s on how your r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h your s i s t e r i s u n ique. How i s i t d i f f e r e n t from a female f r i e n d s h i p ? How i s = i t s i m i l a r ? How i s i t d i f f e r e n t from the r e l a t i o n s h i p you have w i t h your mother? 47 How i s i t s i m i l a r ? How i s i t d i f f e r e n t from your r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h male members i n your f a m i l y ? 3. Now, I'd l i k e you t o t h i n k of a s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t or s e v e r a l i n c i d e n t s , when you f e l t r e a l l y c l o s e t o your s i s t e r , when your r e l a t i o n s h i p was v e r y s u p p o r t i v e and i m p o r t a n t t o you. What happened? What l e d up t o i t ? Why was i t i m p o r t a n t ? Are t h e r e o t h e r f a c t o r s which you f e e l f a c i l i t a t e d or s t r e n g t h e n e d your r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h your s i s t e r ? Once i n t e r v i e w i n g was c o m p l e t e d , i n f o r m a t i o n was t r a n s c r i b e d t o index c a r d s from the tape r e c o r d i n g s . The d a t a p e r t a i n i n g t o each r e s e a r c h a r e a were s e p a r a t e d . ( I n f o r m a t i o n c o l l e c t e d from the f i r s t two r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s were r e c o r d e d d e s c r i p t i v e l y and appear i n Chapter IV as " A d d i t i o n a l E x p l o r a t o r y Q u e s t i o n s " . ) I n f o r m a t i o n g e n e r a t e d from Research Q u e s t i o n #3, the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s , were t a l l i e d and the pro c e d u r e f o r examining c r i t i c i a l i n c i d e n t m a t e r i a l , as o u t l i n e d by Flanagan was i n i t i a t e d . C a t e g o r i e s were f o r m u l a t e d by s o r t i n g a s m a l l sample of i n c i d e n t s i n t o p i l e s . A f t e r t h e s e t e n a t i v e c a t e g o r i e s were e s t a b l i s h e d , b r i e f d e f i n i t i o n s f o r each were d e v e l o p e d , then a d d i t i o n a l i n c i d e n t s were c l a s s i f i e d u s i n g them. D u r i n g t h i s p r o c e s s , c a t e g o r i e s were r e s o r t e d , r e d e f i n e d , and c l a r i f i e d u n t i l a l l i n c i d e n t s were c l a s s i f i e d i n a c l e a r and o r g a n i z e d manner. 48 A f t e r c a t e g o r i z a t i o n was c o m p l e t e d , a summary r e p o r t was d r a f t e d a n d s u b m i t t e d t o t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s t o e n s u r e c o r r e c t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f t h e i r d a t a . In o r d e r t o f u r t h e r c h e c k r e l i a b i l i t y o f t h e s y s t e m , t h e i n c i d e n t s a n d d e s c r i p t i o n s were s u b m i t t e d t o two i n d e p e n d e n t r a t e r s who r e s o r t e d t h e i n c i d e n t s i n t o t h e c a t e g o r i e s p r o v i d e d . The r a t e r s , b o t h g r a d u a t e s t u d e n t s i n C o u n s e l l i n g P s y c h o l o g y , p l a c e d t h e s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s i n t o t h e a p p r o p r i a t e c a t e g o r i e s w i t h a c c u r a c y o f 88% a n d 91% ' r e s p e c t i v e l y , a n d b o t h r a t e r s p l a c e d t h e 11 s u b c a t e g o r i e s i n t o t h e a p p r o p r i a t e s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r y w i t h 100% a c c u r a c y . T h e s e h i g h r a t e s a t t e s t t o t h e d i s t i n c t i v e n e s s o f m a j o r - a r e a a n d s u b - a r e a c a t e g o r y h e a d i n g s a n d t h e c l a r i t y o f i n c i d e n t d e s c r i p t i o n s . 49 CHAPTER I V : RESEARCH FINDINGS A . P A R T I C I P A N T S T h e r e s e a r c h was c o n d u c t e d w i t h f e m a l e s t u d e n t s , r a n g i n g i n age f r o m 1 7 - 3 5 , r e c r u i t e d f r o m t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . Women were a p p r o a c h e d d i r e c t l y i n c a f e t e r i a a n d l o u n g e a r e a s on campus a n d a s k e d t o v o l u n t a r i l y t a k e p a r t i n a s t u d y o f w o m e n ' s s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s by c o m p l e t i n g a q u e s t i o n n a i r e a b o u t t h e i r s o c i a l s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s . One h u n d r e d a n d t e n women p a r t i c i p a t e d . T h o s e women who i n c l u d e d a s i s t e r a n d s a m e - s e x f r i e n d i n t h e i r l i s t o f s u p p o r t n e t w o r k m e m b e r s , f o r t h e S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e , a n d were i n t e r e s t e d i n f u r t h e r p a r t i c i p a t i o n , became t h e s a m p l e f o r t h i s s t u d y . F r o m t h i s s a m p l e , a s u b s a m p l e o f 25 women ( o u t o f an e l i g i b l e 49) were r a n d o m l y c h o s e n f o r c o n t i n u e d p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n t h e s t u d y , w h i c h i n v o l v e d r a t i n g f r i e n d s a n d s i s t e r s on a F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y a s w e l l a s d e s c r i b i n g t h e i n f l u e n c e s w h i c h f a c i l i t a t e d t h e i r s u p p o r t i v e a n d s a t i s f y i n g s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h e random s a m p l e o f 25 women r a n g e d i n a g e f r o m 17 t o 3 5 , w i t h an a v e r a g e o f age o f 2 5 . 8 . T h e y a t t e n d e d u n i v e r s i t y i n a v a r i e t y o f d i s c i p l i n e s a n d were f r o m d i f f e r e n t s o c i o - e c o n o m i c b a c k g r o u n d s - - 5 f r o m l o w e r l e v e l s ; 12 f r o m t h e m i d r a n g e ; a n d 8 f r o m u p p e r l e v e l s - - a s d e t e r m i n e d by t h e R e v i s e d S o c i o l o g i c a l I n d e x ( B l i s h e n & M c R o b e r t s , 1 9 7 6 ) . 50 T h e s e women were t h e f o c u s o f t h e s t u d y . In a d d i t i o n , t h e o r i g i n a l d a t a c o l l e c t e d f r o m a l l 110 women who c o m p l e t e d t h e S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e a l s o were u s e d . B . OCCURENCE OF SUPPORTIVE S I S T E R R E L A T I O N S H I P S The d a t a g e n e r a t e d by t h e S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e i n d i c a t e d t h a t a h i g h p e r c e n t a g e o f women i n t h i s s a m p l e h a d s i s t e r s , a n d t h a t s i s t e r s were f r e q u e n t l y i n c l u d e d i n t h e s e womens' s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s . Of t h e 110 women s u r v e y e d , 88 (80%) h a d s i s t e r s ; a n d o f t h e women w i t h s i s t e r s , 72 (82%) i n c l u d e d t h e i r s i s t e r i n t h e i r s u p p o r t n e t w o r k s . In c o m p a r i s o n , f e w e r women h a d b r o t h e r s , a n d o f t h o s e who h a d , r e c o r d e d them l e s s f r e q u e n t l y on t h e SSQ t h a n s i s t e r s . O n l y 38 (52%) o f t h e 73 women w i t h b r o t h e r s l i s t e d them a s s u p p o r t i v e . P e a r s o n ' s C h i - s q u a r e s t a t i s t i c c o n f i r m e d t h a t women r e l y more on t h e i r s i s t e r s t h a n on t h e i r b r o t h e r s ( x 2 = 1 5 . 5 5 ; p < . 0 0 1 ) . T h e s e r e s u l t s s u p p o r t e d t h e f i r s t r e s e a r c h h y p o t h e s i s : S i s t e r s were l i s t e d more f r e q u e n t l y t h a n b r o t h e r s . T a b l e 1 i d e n t i f i e s t h e d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n s u p p o r t p r o v i d e d by m a l e a n d f e m a l e s i b l i n g s i n t h e a r e a s t a p p e d by t h e S S Q . A l t h o u g h t h e i n f o r m a t i o n i s s p e c u l a t i v e b e c a u s e t h e i n s t r u m e n t was n o t u s e d i n i t s o r i g i n a l f o r m , i t i s o f d e s c r i p t i v e a n d h e u r i s t i c v a l u e . 51 T A B L E I P r o p o r t i o n s o f Women who h a v e B r o t h e r s , a n d Women who h a v e S i s t e r s , who l i s t E a c h a s S u p p o r t i v e on t h e a b b r e v i a t e d S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e . S . S . Q . I t e m s B r o t h e r s S i s t e r s D e p e n d a b l e when I am i n n e e d o f h e l p . . 26 . 5 3 S u p p o r t i v e ( o r w o u l d be ) i f I was m a r r i e d . 2 5 . 5 9 a n d h a d j u s t s e p a r a t e d f r o m my s p o u s e . W i t h whom I c a n f e e l f r e e t o t o t a l l y be .18 .44 m y s e l f . B e l i e v e s I h a v e s o m e t h i n g p o s i t i v e t o .11 .31 c o n t r i b u t e t o o t h e r s . L i s t e n s o p e n l y a n d i s u n c r i t i c a l o f my .08 . 3 4 p e r s o n a l t h o u g h t s a n d f e e l i n g s . S u p p o r t i v e ( o r w o u l d be) i f I was f i r e d .21 .43 f r o m a j o b o r e x p e l l e d f r o m s c h o o l . A c c e p t i n g o f my b e s t a n d w o r s t p o i n t s . .12 . 4 9 T r u l y l o v e s me. . 2 5 . 4 9 S u p p o r t i v e ( o r w o u l d be) o f m a j o r . 1 5 . 3 9 d e c i s i o n s I m a k e . 52 " C . THE NATURE OF THE S I S T E R BOND  1 . D e m o g r a p h i c I n f o r m a t i o n . F o c u s i n g on t h e 25 women who v o l u n t e e r e d t o p r e s e n t t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s f o r i n v e s t i g a t i o n , d e m o g r a p h i c i n f o r m a t i o n r e v e a l e d t h a t t h e women came f r o m f a m i l i e s - o f - o r i g i n w i t h f r o m 1-11 b r o t h e r s a n d s i s t e r s — - an a v e r a g e o f 1.1 b r o t h e r s and 2 . 4 s i s t e r s . T h e women t h e m s e l v e s r a n g e d i n age f r o m 1 7 - 3 5 w i t h an a v e r a g e o f 2 5 . 8 y e a r s . The s i s t e r s (who were f o c u s e d on) r a n g e d f r o m 19 -46 w i t h an a v e r a g e o f 2 6 . 3 . T h i r t e e n o f t h e women t a l k e d a b o u t a c l o s e r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h an o l d e r s i s t e r ; 11 a b o u t a y o u n g e r s i s t e r , a n d 1 a b o u t h e r t w i n . D i f f e r e n c e s i n age r a n g e d f r o m 0-11 y e a r s b e t w e e n t h e t w o . 2 . F r e q u e n c y o f C o n t a c t . T h e f r e q u e n c y o f c o n t a c t b e t w e e n s i s t e r s v a r i e d w i t h t h e p h y s i c a l d i s t a n c e o r p r o x i m i t y b e t w e e n t h e women. T h r e e o f t h e women (12%) l i v e d a t home w i t h s i b l i n g s ; 9 (36%) l i v e d i n t h e same c i t y a s t h e i r s i s t e r ; 2 (8%) l i v e d i n t h e same p r o v i n c e , b u t n o t t h e same c i t y ; 9 (36%) l i v e d i n d i f f e r e n t p r o v i n c e s ; a n d 2 (8%) l i v e d i n d i f f e r e n t c o u n t r i e s . A l l t h e women s a m p l e d r e p o r t e d m a i n t a i n i n g r e g u l a r c o n t a c t , w h i c h r a n g e d f r o m "more t h a n o n c e a d a y " f o r women i n t h e same h o u s e h o l d , t o " o n c e a m o n t h " by m a i l o r t e l e p h o n e , f o r women l i v i n g i n d i f f e r e n t p r o v i n c e s o r d i f f e r e n t c o u n t r i e s . No one r e p o r t e d l e s s f r e q u e n t c o n t a c t t h a n " o n c e a m o n t h " . 53 When asked about the reason f o r c o n t a c t , the overwhelming response was " f o r the enjoyment". In a d d i t i o n , 5 p a r t i c i p a n t s a l s o l i s t e d "needing her h e l p " or "she needs my h e l p " f o r reason s f o r c o n t a c t . 3. S i s t e r s vs F r i e n d s . To f u r t h e r d e s c r i b e the n a t u r e of the s i s t e r bond, the r e l a t i o n s h i p was compared t o female f r i e n d s h i p u s i n g the F r i e n d s h i p B e h a v i o r I n v e n t o r y , which measured 7 d i m e n s i o n s of th e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . S t a t i s t i c a l a n a l y s i s of the data i n v o l v e d the use of t - t e s t s of the s i g n i f i c a n c e of d i f f e r e n c e between means. The r e s u l t s showed t h a t t he women r a t e d t h e i r s i s t e r s s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r than t h e i r f r i e n d s i n the a r e a s of " a u t h e n t i c i t y " , " h e l p and s u p p o r t " , " s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e " , " p o s i t i v e r e g a r d " and "empathic u n d e r s t a n d i n g " . No d i f f e r e n c e was found between the s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p and f r i e n d r e l a t i o n s h i p i n the ar e a s of " s i m i l a r i t y " and " s t r e n g t h of c h a r a c t e r " . The t - t e s t v a l u e s a r e shown i n the f o l l o w i n g t a b l e . 54 T A B L E II Summary o f S i g n i f i c a n t Mean S c o r e D i f f e r e n c e s f o r Women's R e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r S i s t e r s a n d t h e i r F r i e n d s on t h e 7 D i m e n s i o n s o f t h e F r i e n d s h i p B e h a v i o r I n v e n t o r y . (N=25) F . B . I . D i m e n s i o n s S i s t e r s F r i e n d s t - v a l u e X S . D . X S . D . P o s i t i v e R e g a r d 2 2 . 12 2 . 3 3 2 0 . 7 6 3 . 07 2 . 2 1 * A u t h e n t i c i t y 2 2 . 5 6 2 . 43 . 2 0 . 8 4 3 . 08 2 . 7 9 * * H e l p i n g a n d S u p p o r t 2 2 . 5 6 2 . 27 1 9 . 6 0 4 . 51 3 . 2 8 * * S e l f - D i s c l o s u r e 21 .40 3 .12 1 8 . 3 6 4 . 54 3 . 3 4 * * S i m i l a r i t y 1 9 . 7 2 2 . 9 9 1 8 . 7 6 3 . 05 1 .58 E m p a t h i c U n d e r s t a n d i n g 2 2 . 6 0 1 . 80 2 0 . 8 0 3 . 44 2 . 6 2 * * S t r e n g t h o f C h a r a c t e r 1 9 . 3 2 3 . 3 6 1 9 . 1 2 3 . 94 . 25 N o t e : d f=48 * p < . 0 5 * * P < . 0 1 55 G i v e n t h e s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s r e p o r t e d i n t h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s t h e s e c o n d r e s e a r c h h y p o t h e s i s was n o t s u p p o r t e d . I t a p p e a r e d t h a t women e x p e r i e n c e d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r s a n d t h e i r f e m a l e f r i e n d s . T h e f i n d i n g s i n t h i s s t u d y were n o t c o n s i s t e n t w i t h C l a r k a n d L a G a i p a ' s s t u d y w h i c h f o u n d g i r l s ' r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r f r i e n d s h i g h e r i n a r e a s o f " a u t h e n t i c i t y " , " s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e " and " e m p a t h y " . T h e r e f o r e , r e s e a r c h h y p o t h e s i s #3 was n o t s u p p o r t e d . E x p l a n a t i o n s f o r t h e s e i n c o n s i s t e n t f i n d i n g s a r e d i s c u s s e d i n t h e n e x t c h a p t e r . In f a c t , t h e o n l y f i n d i n g w h i c h p r o v e d c o n s i s t e n t i n b o t h t h e C l a r k a n d L a G a i p a (1979) s t u d y a n d t h e p r e s e n t s t u d y was t h a t t h e r e was no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n t h e a r e a o f " s i m i l a r i t y " . Women r e p o r t e d an e q u a l l e v e l o f s i m i l a r i t y i n b o t h r e l a t i o n s h i p s . T h i s f i n d i n g , t h e r e f o r e , d i d n o t s u p p o r t t h e f o u r t h r e s e a r c h h y p o t h e s i s s u g g e s t e d by A d a m s , t h a t t h e r e i s more s i m i l a r i t y be tween f r i e n d s t h a n k i n . I t a l s o s h o u l d be n o t e d t h a t a l t h o u g h t h e s e r e s u l t s h a v e been p r e s e n t e d i n a s i m i l a r manner a s C l a r k & L a G a i p a ' s o r i g i n a l s t u d y , b a s e d on t h e way t h e F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y h a s been u s e d , i t may be more a p p r o p r i a t e t o s a y t h a t : T h e r e i s a h i g h f r i e n d s h i p c o n t e n t i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s , p a r t i c u l a r i l y i n t h e a r e a s o f h e l p i n g a n d s u p p o r t , d i s c l o s u r e , e m p a t h y a n d a u t h e n t i c i t y . 56 D. F A C I L I T A T I N G FACTORS The 25 women i n t e r v i e w e d d e s c r i b e d 180 f a c t o r s w h i c h t h e y f e l t s i g n i f i c a n t l y e n c o u r a g e d o r f a c i l i t a t e d t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f t h e i r s u p p o r t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p . A l t h o u g h t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s were a s k e d p r i m a r i l y f o r f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s , i t was f o u n d t h a t o t h e r f a c t o r s — s u c h a s e n v i r o n m e n t a l c o n d i t i o n s a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p q u a l i t i e s were c i t e d a s f r e q u e n t l y a n d c o n s i d e r e d a s i m p o r t a n t a s t h e s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s . The f a c t o r s w h i c h were r e p o r t e d t o f a c i l i t a t e s t r o n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n s i s t e r s s e p a r a t e d i n t o 3 m a j o r c a t e g o r i e s : CATEGORY #1 - E x t e r n a l I n f l u e n c e s T h i s s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r y c o n s i s t e d o f f a c t o r s , o u t s i d e t h e c o n t r o l o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p i t s e l f , w h i c h a c t e d on o r s h a p e d t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p , u s u a l l y f r o m an e a r l y a g e ; a n d / o r w h i c h d i r e c t l y o r i n d i r e c t l y f o r c e d s i b l i n g s t o g e t h e r i n s u c h a way t h a t i t r e i n f o r c e d t h e b o n d . T h e f a c t o r s i n c l u d e d a r e : a . S i b l i n g s t a t u s e f f e c t s a n d f a m i l y c o a l i t i o n s b . Home e n v i r o n m e n t a n d p h y s i c a l l i v i n g a r r a n g e m e n t s c . P a r e n t a l v a l u e s a n d a c t i o n s f o r a f f i r m i n g c l o s e f a m i l y t i e s d . P a r e n t a l ( a n d s u b s e q u e n t f a m i l y ) p r o b l e m s 57 CATEGORY #2 - I n t r a - p e r s o n a l and I n t e r - p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s The second major c a t e g o r y of responses r e l a t e d t o the e x i s t i n g or e v o l v i n g p e r s o n a l and r e l a t i o n s h i p a t t r i b u t e s w h ich produced an i n c r e a s i n g l y s a t i s f y i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p f o r the women. The f a c i l i t a t i n g f a c t o r s r e p o r t e d i n c l u d e : a. S p e c i f i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s the s i s t e r p o s s e s s e d b. R e l a t i o n s h i p q u a l i t i e s c. Communication s k i l l s d. M a t u r i t y or development CATEGORY #3 - L i f e E v ents The t h i r d s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r y i n c l u d e d s p e c i f i c l i f e e v e n t s which t r i g g e r e d s p e c i a l s h a r i n g w i t h i n the r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h e ' r e l a t i o n a l response t o s t r e s s f u l , t r a n s i t i o n a l , t r a u m a t i c and j o y f u l l i f e c i r c u m s t a n c e s p r o v i d e d a d i r e c t impetus f o r deepening the bond. Such e v e n t s i n c l u d e d : a. A c t u a l or- e x p e c t e d p h y s i c a l s e p a r a t i o n b. S p e c i a l , p o s i t i v e l i f e e v e n t s c. D i f f i c u l t , even t r a u m a t i c o c c u r e n c e s A more d e t a i l e d d e s c r i p t i o n of each c a t e g o r y , w i t h i t ' s s u b c a t e g o r i e s i s p r e s e n t e d below, a l o n g w i t h examples. 58 #1 - E x t e r n a l I n f l u e n c e s a ) S i b l i n g s t a t u s e f f e c t s B e i n g c l o s e i n age a n d o f t h e same s e x o f t e n r e s u l t e d i n b o n d i n g . N i n e t e e n o f t h e 25 women i n t e r v i e w e d (76%) named t h e i r o n l y s i s t e r o r s i s t e r c l o s e s t i n age a s t h e i r c l o s e s t f a m i l y t i e . As a r e s u l t o f t h e i r c o m m o n a l i t i e s , t h e women r e p o r t e d i d e n t i f y i n g w i t h e a c h o t h e r f r o m an e a r l y a g e a n d h a v i n g many s i m i l a r i t i e s a n d s h a r e d i n t e r e s t s . O f t e n t h e y were t r e a t e d s i m i l a r l y - - g r o u p e d t o g e t h e r a s " t h e g i r l s " . E X A M P L E : My s i s t e r a n d I h a v e a l w a y s b e e n c l o s e . We a r e t h e o n l y 2 g i r l s i n t h e f a m i l y and a r e o n l y 13. m o n t h s a p a r t , s o we were a l w a y s t r e a t e d a s " t h e g i r l s " . We s h a r e d a r o o m , h a d i d e n t i c a l c l o t h e s , t o y s a n d were a l w a y s t o g e t h e r . b) Home e n v i r o n m e n t a n d p h y s i c a l l i v i n g a r r a n g e m e n t s W h e t h e r t h e f a m i l y l i v e d i n t h e c i t y o r on a f a r m a n d w h e t h e r t h e y were r e l a t i v e l y s t a b l e o r moved f r e q u e n t l y seemed t o a f f e c t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . S i s t e r s , who came f r o m a r u r a l e n v i r o n m e n t a n d t h o s e whose f a m i l i e s moved f r e q u e n t l y r e p o r t e d s p e n d i n g a l o t o f t i m e t o g e t h e r , r e l y i n g on one a n o t h e r ( s o m e t i m e s a l m o s t e x c l u s i v e l y ) a s p l a y m a t e s , a n d 59 c o m p a n i o n s . S h a r i n g a room a l s o i n c r e a s e d t h e amount o f c o n t a c t s i s t e r s h a d w i t h one a n o t h e r . S h a r i n g c l o t h e s , t o y s a n d f r i e n d s a d d e d t o t h e l i s t . T e n i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d i n t h i s c a t e g o r y . E X A M P L E : We grew up on a f a r m a n d o n l y h a d e a c h o t h e r t o p l a y w i t h . When we moved t o t h e c i t y , we l o s t t h e c o h e s i o n , b u t e v e r y summer my p a r e n t s t o o k u s b a c k t o t h e f a r m f o r a few weeks v a c a t i o n a n d w e ' d q u i c k l y r e g a i n t h e c l o s e n e s s . c ) P a r e n t a l v a l u e s a n d a c t i o n s P a r e n t s who v a l u e d c l o s e f a m i l y t i e s ; e m p h a s i z e d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f s u p p o r t i v e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s a n d a r r a n g e d f a m i l y i n t e r a c t i o n s , seemed t o c o n t r i b u t e t o t h e s i b l i n g b o n d . T w e l v e i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d i n w h i c h p a r e n t s e n c o u r a g e d t h e s i b l i n g s t o s u p p o r t a n d l o o k a f t e r one a n o t h e r ; t o s p e n d t i m e t o g e t h e r a n d t o r e s o l v e c o n f l i c t s , a n d / o r w h e r e t h e y f a c i l i t a t e d t h e u n i t y by a r r a n g i n g r e g u l a r f a m i l y g e t - t o g e t h e r s ; a n d by e n c o u r a g i n g s i b l i n g s t o m a i n t a i n r e g u l a r c o n t a c t ( e v e n by p a y i n g f o r l o n g - d i s t a n c e t e l e p h o n e c h a r g e s ! ) . E X A M P L E : My m o t h e r v a l u e s p o s i t i v e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , s h e i s v e r y c l o s e t o h e r own s i s t e r a n d a l w a y s p l a n s f a m i l y g e t - t o g e t h e r s 60 s o t h a t we s p e n d t i m e t o g e t h e r a n d h a v e g o o d t i m e s . d) P a r e n t a l p r o b l e m s When m a j o r d i f f i c u l t i e s o c c u r e d i n t h e f a m i l y , e i t h e r b e t w e e n p a r e n t s o r b e t w e e n a p a r e n t a n d c h i l d , s i b l i n g s seemed t o b o n d t o g e t h e r w i t h one a n o t h e r . N i n e t e e n i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d h e r e . E x a m p l e s i n c l u d e : a l c o h o l i s m ; d e b i l i t a t i n g p h y s i c a l o r m e n t a l i l l n e s s i n a p a r e n t ; c h i l d a b u s e o r n e g l e c t ; p a r e n t a l m a r r i a g e p r o b l e m s , s e p a r a t i o n a n d / o r d i v o r c e ; a n d d i f f i c u l t p a r e n t - c h i l d r e l a t i o n s . Women who c i t e d t h e s e i n c i d e n t s e m p h a s i z e d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f t h e i r s i s t e r a n d o t h e r s i b l i n g s a t t h e t i m e . T h e y o f t e n s u p p o r t e d a n d p r o t e c t e d one a n o t h e r ; t a l k e d a n d c r i e d t o g e t h e r ; s h a r e d s e c r e t s ; d e f e n d e d e a c h o t h e r a n d u n d e r s t o o d one a n o t h e r d e e p l y . Many women f e l t t h a t t h e i r d e e p l o y a l t y f o r one a n o t h e r o r i g i n a t e d a t t h e t i m e o f t h e i r e a r l y p r o b l e m a t i c e x p e r i e n c e . E X A M P L E S : When my mom was m a r r i e d t o an a l c o h o l i c , t h a t was t h e c l o s e s t w e ' v e e v e r b e e n . We s o r t o f c l u n g t o e a c h o t h e r , we w o u l d t a l k a n d c r y t o g e t h e r . We a l s o h a d a common h a t r e d f o r h i m . When I was 1 6 , my p a r e n t s s e p a r a t e d . I t was t h a t c r i s i s w h i c h 61 b r o u g h t (my s i s t e r ) a n d I t o g e t h e r . My p a r e n t s were so i n v o l v e d w i t h t h e i r p r o b l e m s , t h e y were n o t t h e r e f o r us - - s o t h a t r e a l l y k n i t t h e r e s t o f us ( s i b l i n g s ) t o g e t h e r . When, my 2 o l d e r s i s t e r s l e f t home, my y o u n g e r s i s t e r a n d I were l e f t t o d e a l w i t h o u r m o t h e r . We b o t h h a d t o h o l d h a n d s t o j o i n f o r c e s t o d e a l w i t h h e r b e c a u s e s h e ' s s o d o m i n a n t a n d o l d - f a s h i o n e d . In t o t a l 60 i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d by 20 women i n t h i s s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r y . T h e s e p r e s e t a n d c i r c u m s t a n t i a l c o n d i t i o n s seemed t o h a v e q u i t e a p r o f o u n d e f f e c t on t h e d e v e l o p i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n t h e s i s t e r s i n t e r v i e w e d . #2 - I n t r a - p e r s o n a l a n d i n t e r - p e r s o n a l f a c t o r s a) S p e c i f i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s p o s s e s s e d by t h e s i s t e r When a s k e d f o r f a c t o r s w h i c h f a c i l i t a t e d t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h t h e i r c l o s e s t s i s t e r , e i g h t women s a i d t h a t t h e i r s i s t e r ' s p e r s o n a l i t y was an i m p o r t a n t f a c t o r . Q u a l i t i e s , w h i c h were r e p o r t e d i n c l u d e d : s t r o n g , i n t e l l i g e n t , u n d e r s t a n d i n g , s u p p o r t i v e , d e p e n d a b l e , a c c e p t i n g , n o n - c r i t i c a l , n o n - c o m p e t i t i v e , h o n e s t , l o y a l , p o s i t i v e , c a r i n g , e a s y - g o i n g a n d a f f e c t i o n a t e . (The c o m p l e t e d e s c r i p t i o n g i v e n by e a c h woman was u s e d a s one 62 d i s t i n c t i n c i d e n t , t h e r e f o r e 8 i n c i d e n t s were counted.) EXAMPLE: She's v e r y e a s y - g o i n g and a c c e p t i n g , I can say a n y t h i n g t o her and she doesn't judge me. She's v e r y s u p p o r t i v e and I know she's t h e r e i f I want t o t a l k about a n y t h i n g . b) R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t i e s Some women a l s o s a i d t h a t something i n the r e l a t i o n s h i p i t s e l f h e l p e d t o encourage a s p e c i a l c l o s e n e s s . The i n t e r p e r s o n a l c o m p a t i b i l i t y of the two p r o v i d e d an atmosphere t h a t w a s / i s : s e c u r e , c o m f o r t a b l e , s u p p o r t i v e , u n d e r s t a n d i n g , l o y a l , r e s p e c t f u l , n o n - c o m p e t i t i v e , v a l i d a t i n g and e n j o y a b l e . S i m i l a r i t i e s between the two women, i n terms of p e r s o n a l i t i e s , v a l u e s , p e r c e p t i o n s and/or i n t e r e s t s were a l s o g i v e n as c o n t r i b u t i n g t o the a f f e c t i v e c o m p a t i b i l i t y of the r e l a t i o n s h i p . S h a r i n g the same sense of humour was an o t h e r commonality. E l e v e n women named g e n e r a l r e l a t i o n s h i p q u a l i t i e s , which were c a t e g o r i z e d as e l e v e n s e p a r a t e i n c i d e n t s . EXAMPLE: Our p e r s o n a l i t i e s a r e so s i m i l a r and so d i f f e r e n t i n the r i g h t ways t h a t we c l i c k . We fought u n t i l we were about age 10, but 63 n o t much s i n c e t h e n . We c a n r e s o l v e any d i f f e r e n c e s now. We d o n ' t c o m p e t e a n d we a r e b o t h i n t e n s e l y l o y a l . c ) C o m m u n i c a t i o n s k i l l s B e i n g a b l e t o c o m m u n i c a t e a n d r e s o l v e d i f f i c u l t i e s were s e e n a s i m p o r t a n t f a c t o r s i n f a c i l i t a t i n g a n d m a i n t a i n i n g t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p a t a m e a n i n g f u l l e v e l . C o m m u n i c a t i o n q u a l i t i e s i n c l u d e d : c o m m u n i c a t i n g a t a d e e p , i n t i m a t e l e v e l ; b e i n g open a n d h o n e s t ; t r u s t i n g one a n o t h e r ; b e i n g e m p a t h i c a n d b e i n g a b l e t o e x p r e s s o n e ' s s e l f a t a c o r e l e v e l i n c l u d i n g t h e e x p r e s s i o n o f a f f e c t i o n a s w e l l a s a n g e r . C o n f l i c t was m i n i m i z e d by s e n s i t i v e a w a r e n e s s o f t h e o t h e r p e r s o n ' s s p a c e a n d n e e d s a n d r e s o l v e d by c o m m u n i c a t i n g and r e a f f i r m i n g t h e b o n d . F o u r t e e n i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d i n t h i s c a t e g o r y . E X A M P L E : We c a n a l s o t a l k a t a r e a l l y m e a n i n g f u l l e v e l . I t h i n k b e c o m i n g f e m i n i s t s t o g e t h e r — r e a d i n g a l o t o f t h e same b o o k s , s h a r i n g i d e a s , u n d e r s t a n d i n g e a c h o t h e r a t a d e e p l e v e l a n d m a k i n g s e n s e o f a l o t o f s h a r e d e x p e r i e n c e s h a s b e e n v e r y i m p o r t a n t f o r o u r r e l a t i o n s h i p . We a l s o l a u g h a l o t a t t h e same s o r t o f t h i n g s . d) M a t u r i t y o r d e v e l o p m e n t 64 C l o s e n e s s was r e p o r t e d t o i n c r e a s e a s one o r b o t h s i s t e r s m a t u r e d . S i x t e e n women f e l t t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r i m p r o v e d f r o m when t h e y were y o u n g e r . T h e y d e s c r i b e d t h e i r a d u l t r e l a t i o n s h i p a s more e g a l i t a r i a n , more r e s p e c t f u l , a n d more open and i n t i m a t e . T h e age d i f f e r e n c e d i d n o t seem a s m a r k e d a s i t was e a r l i e r . T h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s were v a l u e d m o r e ; s i m i l a r i t i e s o f i n t e r e s t s , v a l u e s a n d e x p e r i e n c e s were r e c o g n i z e d a n d v a l i d a t e d . E X A M P L E S : I d o n ' t t h i n k i t ' s a s p e c i f i c e v e n t a s s u c h — i t seems more a m a t t e r o f t i m e - - a g e g a p b e c o m i n g l e s s i m p o r t a n t . S h e ' s grown up e n o u g h . I d o n ' t t r e a t h e r l i k e a y o u n g e r s i s t e r any m o r e . I e n j o y h e r b e i n g p a r t o f t h e c r o w d . She r e a l l y grew up when s h e went t o u n i v e r s i t y . She had . some e m o t i o n a l p r o b l e m s a n d w o r k e d t h r o u g h a l o t . She r e a l i z e d what f r i e n d s h i p i s , a n d what v a l u e s a r e i m p o r t a n t . Now we a r e v e r y c l o s e . Our a g e s d o n ' t m a t t e r s o m u c h . T h e r e i s a c h a n g e i n o u r r e l a t i o n s h i p t o o . We t a l k m o r e , a r e more o p e n a b o u t t h i n g s . Our c a r e e r s a r e s i m i l a r t o o a n d we h a v e o t h e r s i m i l a r i n t e r e s t s . We a r e more e q u a l a n d t h e r e i s a m u t u a l i t y i n s u p p o r t a n d r e s p e c t . 65 In t o t a l , 19 women d e s c r i b e d 49 i n c i d e n t s wh ich ' f i t t h i s s e c o n d m a j o r c a t e g o r y . T h e s e f a c t o r s , c o n s i d e r e d i n h e r e n t t o t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p i t s e l f , w e r e a p p a r e n t l y , v e r y i m p o r t a n t i n e s t a b l i s h i n g a n d m a i n t a i n i n g a c l o s e r e l a t i o n s h i p . #3 - C r i t i c a l l i f e e v e n t s a) A c t u a l o r e x p e c t e d p h y s i c a l s e p a r a t i o n Many women o b s e r v e d t h a t t h e y d i d n o t f u l l y r e c o g n i z e t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p u n t i l t h e y were s e p a r a t e d ( i e . one s i s t e r moved a w a y ) . W i t h t h i s r e c o g n i t i o n , came i n c r e a s e d a p p r e c i a t i o n f o r one a n o t h e r ' s s u p p o r t a n d c o n t a c t ; t h e y v a l u e d t h e i r t i m e t o g e t h e r more - - h a v i n g v e r y s p e c i a l a n d i m p o r t a n t v i s i t s d u r i n g t h e p e r i o d o f s e p a r a t i o n . When t h e y were r e u n i t e d , t e m p o r a r i l y o r a c t u a l l y l i v i n g n e a r one a n o t h e r a g a i n , s i s t e r s became more i n v o l v e d i n e a c h o t h e r ' s l i v e s , a n d / o r b e g a n c o m m u n i c a t i n g a t a d e e p e r l e v e l . Some b e g a n e x p r e s s i n g t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p f o r a f i r s t t i m e ; o t h e r s became more a f f e c t i o n a t e a n d l o v i n g . E i g h t e e n i n c i d e n t s were n o t e d . E X A M P L E S : S i n c e I moved a w a y , we h a v e r e a l l y b e g u n t o a p p r e c i a t e e a c h o t h e r m o r e . We m i s s e a c h o t h e r a g r e a t d e a l . We w r i t e , s e n d g i f t s o r s p e c i a l c a r d s a n d we p h o n e e a c h o ' ther a t l e a s t o n c e a 66 week ( o u t r a g e o u s phone b i l l s ) . And when we do a c t u a l l y g e t t o g e t h e r we h a v e g r e a t v i s i t s . W i t h i n t h e p a s t y e a r s i n c e I ' v e moved b a c k , w e ' v e become c l o s e r . We s p e n d t i m e t o g e t h e r a n d t a l k a l o t . We h a v e o p e n e d up t o e a c h o t h e r a n d b e g u n t o d e a l w i t h p a s t i s s u e s t a l k i n g a t a m e a n i n g f u l l e v e l i s v e r y i m p o r t a n t t o me. b) S p e c i a l p o s i t i v e l i f e e v e n t s C e l e b r a t i n g a s p e c i a l l i f e e v e n t s u c h a s m a r r i a g e o r c h i l d b i r t h was a h i g h l i g h t f o r some women. O t h e r women named e v e n t s s u c h a s a s p e c i a l p a r t y o r s h a r e d a d v e n t u r e . The r e l a t i o n s h i p was s t r e n g t h e n e d by p r e p a r i n g f o r , a n d a n t i c i p a t i n g t h e e v e n t t o g e t h e r , by s h a r i n g t h e s p e c i a l t i m e , t h e n by r e m e m b e r i n g i t . M e m o r i e s o f o t h e r s p e c i a l t i m e s were a l s o i n c l u d e d , s u c h a s : j u s t s p e n d i n g t i m e w i t h e a c h o t h e r o r w i t h one a n o t h e r ' s c h i l d r e n o r o t h e r s p e c i a l f a m i l y members - - f e e l i n g t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f c l o s e f e m a l e b o n d s . F o u r t e e n p o s t i v e l i f e e v e n t s were g i v e n . E X A M P L E S : My s i s t e r a n d h e r h u s b a n d w a n t e d me t o be p r e s e n t when s h e h a d h e r s e c o n d b a b y . T h a t was a r e a l l y s p e c i a l t i m e t h a t r e i n f o r c e d o u r r e l a t i o n s h i p e v e n m o r e . 67 When I was 12 a n d s h e was 14 , I l i k e d t h i s guy a n d s h e h e l p e d me make t h i s t e r r i f i c c o s t u m e f o r a p a r t y — i t was t h e f i r s t t i m e she r e a l l y h e l p e d me l i k e t h a t , s e l f l e s s l y , a l l n i g h t . I was t o u c h e d by t h a t a n d we s t a r t e d t o g e t c l o s e r a f t e r t h a t . c ) D i f f i c u l t o r t r a u m a t i c l i f e e v e n t s S u p p o r t i n g one a n o t h e r t h r o u g h t i m e s o f d i f f i c u l t y was t h e l a r g e s t s u b c a t e g o r y , w i t h 39 r e p o r t e d i n c i d e n t s . T y p e s o f d i f f i c u l t i e s i n c l u d e d : d e a t h o f a f a m i l y , member; r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h b o y f r i e n d o r h u s b a n d t e r m i n a t e d ; i l l n e s s a n d / o r h o s p i t a l i z a t i o n ; e m o t i o n a l d i f f i c u l t y o r c r i s i s ; a n d o t h e r g e n e r a l l y s t r e s s f u l e v e n t s . When b o t h e x p e r i e n c e d t h e t r a u m a , s i s t e r s h e l p e d one a n o t h e r by s p e n d i n g t i m e t o g e t h e r , b e i n g m u t u a l l y s u p p o r t i v e a n d by t a l k i n g i n t i m a t e l y a b o u t t h e g r i e f a n d / o r c r y i n g t o g e t h e r . When one e x p e r i e n c e d d i f f i c u l t y , t h e o t h e r was a v a i l a b l e a n d d e p e n d a b l e , was n u r t u r i n g a n d p r o v i d e d p r a c t i c a l a n d e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t t h r o u g h t h e t i m e s o f n e e d . A s w e l l , s i s t e r s h e l p e d e a c h o t h e r s o l v e p r o b l e m s a n d make d e c i s i o n s . T h e y p r o v i d e d e a c h o t h e r w i t h a c c e p t a n c e , s u p p o r t , c o u r a g e a n d s t r e n g t h . E X A M P L E S : A f t e r o u r m o t h e r ' s d e a t h , s h e f e l t g u i l t y a n d h a d a d i f f i c u l t 68 t i m e , b e c a u s e she d i d n ' t h a v e a g o o d r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h o u r m o t h e r , w h e r e a s my o l d e r s i s t e r a n d I h a d a l r e a d y r e s o l v e d o u r d i f f e r e n c e s w i t h h e r , p a s s e d t h e s t a g e . I r e a l i z e d t h a t s h e was h a v i n g a r e a l l y d i f f i c u l t t i m e a n d I t r i e d t o h e l p h e r , t o be u n d e r s t a n d i n g . When I was h a v i n g p r o b l e m s i n my m a r r i a g e , I c a l l e d h e r . She t o l d me I c o u l d come o u t a n d s t a y w i t h h e r f o r a s l o n g a s I w a n t e d o r n e e d e d t o . W e ' r e a l w a y s h e l p i n g e a c h o t h e r i n c r i s e s a n d we a l w a y s seem t o be i n c r i s e s , one o r t h e o t h e r . T h e y may n o t be t h a t b i g l a t e r , b u t a t t h e t i m e i t seems l i k e t h e e n d o f t h e w o r l d . A l l 25 women c o n t r i b u t e d t o make t h i s t h e l a r g e s t s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r y w i t h a t o t a l o f 71 i n c i d e n t s . 1. F r e q u e n c i e s o f F a c t o r s . T h i s i n f o r m a t i o n i s p r e s e n t e d i n g r a p h i c f o r m i n F i g u r e 1, a n d a c o m p i l a t i o n o f t h e s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s a n d t h e i r s u b c a t e g o r y a n d s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s i s p r o v i d e d i n t h e A p p e n d i x I I I . 69 FIGURE 1 Frequencies of F a c i l i t a t i n g F a c t o r s and t h e i r C a t e g o r i z a t i o n 5 0 t 45 j 40 | 35; \ 3 0 : : 2 5 : : 2 0 : : 1 5 : : 1 1 1 0 : : i— i 1 I 5:: A B C D E F G H I J K External Influences A. S i b l i n g Status E f f e c t s B. Home Environment C. Parental Influences D. Family Problems Relationship Q u a l i t i e s E. S i s t e r ' s character F . Relationship Q u a l i t i e s G. Communication S k i l l s H. Maturity & Growth C r i t i c a l L i f e Events I. Separation J . P o s i t i v e Events K. D i f f i c u l t Events 70 E . ADDIT IONAL EXPLORATORY QUESTIONS When a s k e d a b o u t how t h e s i s t e r b o n d c o m p a r e d w i t h o t h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n d i f i t i n f l u e n c e d f e m a l e f r i e n d s h i p , t h e m a j o r i t y o f women f o u n d i t d i f f i c u l t t o e x p r e s s t h e s u b t l e t i e s . T h i s s e c t i o n i s t h e r e f o r e s k e t c h y , b u t t h e d e s c r i p t i o n s a r e p r e s e n t e d b e l o w . DO YOU F E E L YOUR R E L A T I O N S H I P WITH YOUR S I S T E R HAS A F F E C T E D YOUR R E L A T I O N S H I P WITH YOUR FEMALE F R I E N D S ? F o u r women s a i d " n o " ; 3 were u n d e c i d e d a n d 5 s a i d " y e s , b u t w e r e n ' t s u r e how" a n d 13 women s a i d " y e s " a n d g a v e t h e f o l l o w i n g e x p l a n a t i o n s . Some r e s p o n d e n t s s a i d t h e y f e l t t h e y h a d l e a r n e d s o c i a l s k i l l s a n d p a t t e r n s o f r e l a t i n g t o f e m a l e s i n t h e i r e a r l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s w h i c h t r a n s f e r r e d t o t h e i r f r i e n d s h i p s . O t h e r s s a i d t h e y f e l t c o m f o r t a b l e i n f e m a l e company a n d f e l t t h e y u n d e r s t o o d t h e m s e l v e s a n d o t h e r women f r o m t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e i n g r o w i n g up w i t h s i s t e r s . A n o t h e r r e s p o n s e was t h a t t h e y l o o k e d f o r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w h i c h were o f a s i m i l a r i l y s a t i s f y i n g i n t e n s i t y a n d c o m f o r t , a n d / o r f o r f r i e n d s who h a d s i m i l a r q u a l i t i e s a n d ' v a l u e s a s t h e i r s i s t e r s , i n c l u d i n g b e i n g n o n - c o m p e t i t i v e , r e s p e c t i n g a n d v a l u i n g women 's r e l a t i o n s h i p s . HOW IS YOUR R E L A T I O N S H I P WITH YOUR S I S T E R D I F F E R E N T FROM THE R E L A T I O N S H I P WITH A FEMALE FRIEND? Women e m p h a s i z e d t h e p e r m a n e n c e , s h a r e d h i s t o r y , a n d u n s p o k e n u n d e r s t a n d i n g ; t h e y a l s o f e l t t h a t t h e y c o u l d e x p r e s s a n g e r more e a s i l y w i t h a 71 s i s t e r t h a n w i t h a f r i e n d b e c a u s e t h e y f e l t " f i g h t i n g " w i t h a s i s t e r w o u l d n o t j e o p a r d i z e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . One woman a l s o f e l t t h a t s h e s o m e t i m e s " t o o k h e r s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p f o r g r a n t e d " a n d d i d n ' t p u t a s much i n t o i t a s s h e d i d w i t h h e r f r i e n d s h i p s . HOW IS YOUR R E L A T I O N S H I P WITH YOUR S I S T E R D I F F E R E N T FROM THE R E L A T I O N S H I P YOU HAVE WITH YOUR MOTHER? A m a j o r i t y o f women (68%) a l s o r e p o r t e d c l o s e b o n d s w i t h t h e i r m o t h e r s f e l t l o v e d a n d s u p p o r t e d - - h o w e v e r , i f g i v e n a c h o i c e on whom t o t u r n t o , most women (80%) f e l t t h a t t h e i r s i s t e r w o u l d u n d e r s t a n d m o r e , o r w o u l d g i v e more a p p r o p r i a t e i n f o r m a t i o n o r a d v i c e . HOW IS YOUR R E L A T I O N S H I P WITH YOUR S I S T E R D I F F E R E N T FROM THE R E L A T I O N S H I P YOU HAVE WITH MALE FAMILY MEMBERS? Women, g e n e r a l l y f e l t t h e i r c r o s s - s e x f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s were n o t a s p e r s o n a l a s s a m e - s e x t i e s . T h e y d i d n ' t s h a r e t h e same l e v e l o f i n t i m a c y . H o w e v e r , many women (40%) d e s c r i b e d c l o s e b o n d s i n w h i c h t h e y p a r t i c i p a t e d i n d i f f e r e n t a c t i v i t i e s a n d t a l k e d a b o u t d i f f e r e n t t h i n g s t h a n t h e y d i d w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r s . F o r e x a m p l e , women p a r t i c i p a t e d i n s o c i a l a c t i v i t i e s - s p o r t s a n d games w i t h t h e i r b r o t h e r s w h i l e t h e y w o u l d " j u s t s p e n d t i m e w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r - t a l k i n g " . C o n v e r s a t i o n s w i t h b r o t h e r s were more g e n e r a l , c o v e r i n g s u c h t o p i c s a s w o r k , s c h o o l a n d s o m e t i m e s r e l a t i o n s h i p s , b u t n o t a t t h e same l e v e l o f i n t i m a c y a s w i t h s i s t e r s . 72 T h e s e a d d i t i o n a l e x p l o r a t o r y q u e s t i o n s r a i s e some i n t e r e s t i n g p o i n t s w h i c h , when e x a m i n e d i n f u t u r e r e s e a r c h , w i l l p r o v i d e v a l u a b l e a n d i n t e r e s t i n g i n f o r m a t i o n . 73 CHAPTER V : D I S C U S S I O N  A . STATEMENT OF R E S U L T S The r e s u l t s o f t h i s s t u d y c o n f i r m t h a t many women h a v e a u n i q u e , s p e c i a l i z e d s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p , w h i c h i s an i m p o r t a n t p a r t o f t h e i r s u p p o r t n e t w o r k . T h i s i s shown by a l a r g e number o f women i n t h i s s t u d y who h a v e s i s t e r s a n d who r e l y on them f o r t h e i n t i m a c y a n d s u p p o r t f o u n d c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f t h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h i s i s an i m p o r t a n t f i n d i n g a s p r e v i o u s l i t e r a t u r e , i n b o t h t h e a r e a s o f w o m e n ' s s t u d i e s a n d s i b l i n g r e s e a r c h , h a s o n l y h i n t e d a t t h i s i m p o r t a n c e . The r e l a t i o n s h i p i s m a r k e d by r e g u l a r a n d f r e q u e n t c o n t a c t , c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f f a m i l y t i e s , b u t c o n t a c t i s a l s o v o l u n t a r y a n d m a i n t a i n e d p r i m a r i l y f o r t h e e n j o y m e n t o f b e i n g t o g e t h e r r a t h e r t h a n f o r o b l i g a t o r y r e a s o n s . In t h i s w a y , t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p i s s i m i l a r t o f r i e n d s h i p . In a n a l y z i n g t h e f r i e n d s h i p c o n t e n t i n s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , i t i s f o u n d t h a t women r a t e t h e i r s i s t e r s s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r i n a r e a s o f " h e l p a n d s u p p o r t " , " a u t h e n t i c i t y " , " s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e " , " e m p a t h i c u n d e r s t a n d i n g " a n d " p o s i t i v e r e g a r d " t h a n t h e i r s a m e - s e x f e m a l e f r i e n d s , b u t r a t e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s e q u a l l y i n t h e a r e a s o f " s i m i l a r i t y " a n d " s t r e n g t h o f c h a r a c t e r " . T h e y r e s p e c t a n d f e e l s i m i l a r i t i e s w i t h b o t h . T h e s e f i n d i n g s v a r y f r o m t h e r e s u l t s f o u n d i n C l a r k a n d L a G a i p a ' s o r i g i n a l (1979) s t u d y . T h e d i f f e r e n c e s may be 74 a c c o u n t e d f o r by t h e s a m p l e s t h e m s e l v e s . The p r e s e n t s t u d y a s k s a d u l t women w i t h a s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r a n d a s u p p o r t i v e f e m a l e f r i e n d r e l a t i o n s h i p t o r a t e e a c h on t h e F r i e n d s h i p B e h a v i o u r I n v e n t o r y ; w h e r e a s C l a r k and L a G a i p a s a m p l e d a d o l e s c e n t g i r l s who m e r e l y had s i s t e r s — r e g a r d l e s s o f t h e i r a v a i l a b i l i t y o r s u p p o r t i v e n e s s . I t may be t h a t a d o l e s c e n t g i r l s r e a c h b e y o n d f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s f o r a s a m e - s e x b e s t f r i e n d , t h e n i n e a r l y a d u l t h o o d r e a f f i r m t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p , b u t s u c h a p r e m i s e w o u l d r e q u i r e f u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n , o p t i m a l l y , l o n g t i t u d i n a l i n v e s t i g a t i o n . What i s a p p a r e n t f r o m t h e r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s o f t h e p r e s e n t s t u d y i s t h a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s women h a v e w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r s a n d f e m a l e f r i e n d s do h a v e s i m i l a r i t i e s . On t h e d i m e n s i o n s where s i s t e r s a r e r a t e d h i g h e r , i t seems l i k e l y t h a t t h e l o n g s h a r e d h i s t o r y a n d common i d e n t i t y o f c l o s e s i s t e r h o o d w o u l d p r o v i d e a " c o r e " k n o w l e d g e "of one a n o t h e r , u n s p o k e n u n d e r s t a n d i n g , a n d d e e p l e v e l c o m m u n i c a t i o n . T h e h i g h r e l i a n c e on s i s t e r s f o r " h e l p a n d s u p p o r t " c o u l d a l s o be a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e h i s t o r y o f commi tment a n d d e p e n d a b i l i t y , o f t e n f o u n d i n f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s . T h i s i s . s u p p o r t e d by Adams ( 1 9 6 8 ) , who i n d i c a t e s t h a t f a m i l y members a r e more f r e q u e n t l y c a l l e d upon a n d more o f t e n p r o v i d e p r a c t i c a l a n d e m o t i o n a l s u p p o r t d u r i n g d i f f i c u l t l i f e e v e n t s t h a n n o n - f a m i l y m e m b e r s . The a p p a r e n t skew t o w a r d s h i g h e r s i s t e r r a t i n g s c o u l d a l s o be e x p l a i n e d by t h e s e l e c t i o n p r o c e d u r e , w h i c h 75 c h o s e women on t h e b a s i s o f t h e i r s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The 25 women i n t e r v i e w e d d e s c r i b e d 180 f a c t o r s w h i c h t h e y f e l t s i g n i f i c a n t l y e n c o u r a g e d o r f a c i l i t a t e d t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h t h e i r s i s t e r s . A l t h o u g h t h e women were a s k e d f o r s p e c i f i c f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s , o t h e r f a c t o r s s u c h a s e n v i r o n m e n t a l f a c t o r s a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s were c i t e d a s f r e q u e n t l y a n d c o n s i d e r e d a s i m p o r t a n t a s t h e s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s . T h e r e f o r e t h e f a c t o r s were c a t e g o r i z e d i n t o t h e f o l l o w i n g f r a m e w o r k . 1. E x t e r n a l I n f l u e n c e s - T h e r e l a t i o n s h i p d e v e l o p s w i t h i n a c o n t e x t o r e n v i r o n m e n t w h i c h i s c o n d u c i v e t o f o s t e r i n g a s t r o n g s i b l i n g b o n d . T h e s e f a c t o r s a r e l a r g e l y o u t s i d e t h e c o n t r o l o f t h e c h i l d — s u c h a s when one i s b o r n , o n e ' s g e n d e r , t h e a g e s p a n a n d g e n d e r o f s i b l i n g s , where one l i v e s ( r u r a l o r u r b a n e n v i r o n m e n t ) , f r e q u e n c y o f m o v e s , o n e ' s f a m i l y ' s s o c i o - e c o n o m i c s t a t u s , w h e t h e r one s h a r e s a room a n d p o s s e s s i o n s , a s w e l l a s p a r e n t a l a t t i t u d e s a n d a c t i o n s w h i c h h a v e a p o w e r f u l i n f l u e n c e on s i b l i n g s o l i d a r i t y . A n o t h e r s u b c a t e g o r y w h i c h h a d p r o f o u n d e f f e c t s on t h e d e v e l o p i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p was m a j o r p a r e n t a l p r o b l e m s , s u c h a s : a l c o h o l i s m ; p h y s i c a l o r m e n t a l i l l n e s s ; a b u s i v e , n e g l e c t i n g o r d i f f i c u l t p a r e n t ; a n d m a r i t a l d i f f i c u l t i e s w h i c h o f t e n l e a d t o f a m i l y b r e a k - u p . V a r i o u s a r r a n g e m e n t s o f t h e a b o v e c o n d i t i o n s were 76 c i t e d a s s t r o n g i n f l u e n c e s w h i c h s h a p e d t h e e a r l y r e l a t i o n s h i p . 2 . I n t r a - p e r s o n a l a n d i n t e r - p e r s o n a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s - T h e s e c o n d s e t o f f a c t o r s a r e t h e more s u b t l e o n e s o p e r a t i n g w i t h i n e a c h s i b l i n g a n d b e t w e e n t h e two w h i c h d e t e r m i n e s t h e a f f e c t i v e n a t u r e o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p i t s e l f . T h e s e i n c l u d e s p e c i f i c p e r s o n a l i t y c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , t h e c o m p a t i b i l i t y o f t h e two p e r s o n a l i t i e s a n d c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p , i n c l u d i n g t h e a b i l i t y t o c o m m u n i c a t e , r e s o l v e c o n f l i c t a n d a l l o w f o r p e r s o n a l g r o w t h a n d d e v e l o p m e n t w h i c h c o n s e q u e n t l y c h a n g e s a n d e x p a n d s t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . 3 . S p e c i f i c L i f e I n c i d e n t s / E v e n t s - L i f e e v e n t s , b o t h d e v e l o p m e n t a l e v e n t s , s u c h a s t h e s i s t e r ' s m a r r i a g e , o r m o v i n g away f r o m t h e f a m i l y home; a n d u n e x p e c t e d l i f e i n c i d e n t s , l i k e s e r i o u s i l l n e s s o r s i b l i n g d e a t h , t r i g g e r s t r e n g t h e n i n g i n t h e s i s t e r b o n d . I t i s n o t e d t h a t , i n o t h e r s t u d i e s e x a m i n i n g t h e e f f e c t s o f c r i t i c a l l i f e e v e n t s on a s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p , v i r t u a l l y i d e n t i c a l l i f e e v e n t s c a n e l i c i t o p p o s i t e r e a c t i o n s a n d c o n s e q u e n c e s (Bank & K a h n , 1982; R o s s & M i l g r a m , 1 9 8 2 ) . The r e s e a r c h e r s c o n t e n d t h a t w h e t h e r s i b l i n g s draw c l o s e r o r d i s t a n c e t h e m s e l v e s d e p e n d s on t h e q u a l i t y o f t h e b o n d e x i s t i n g p r i o r t o t h e i n c i d e n t . T h u s t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f e a r l y 77 e n v i r o n m e n t a l f a c t o r s a n d r e l a t i o n s h i p m a i n t e n a n c e a b i l i t i e s f o u n d i n t h i s s t u d y a r e s u p p o r t e d a n d v a l i d a t e d . B . S I G N I F I C A N C E OF THE STUDY 1. T h e o r e t i c a l S i g n i f i c a n c e . T h i s s t u d y s u p p o r t s t h e a s s u m p t i o n t h a t s i s t e r s p l a y an i m p o r t a n t r o l e i n e a c h o t h e r s l i v e s . T h e s e r e s u l t s h a v e g e n e r a l s i g n i f i c a n c e i n c o n f i r m i n g t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n d i n a f f i r m i n g t h e s u p p o r t i v e a n d i n t i m a t e p o t e n t i a l o f women 's r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The f i n d i n g s a r e c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e o r i e s p r o p o s e d by Bank a n d Kahn ( 1 9 8 2 ) , C i c i r e l l i ( 1 9 8 2 ) , Dunn (1985) a n d o t h e r s who h o l d s i b l i n g s a s i m p o r t a n t a g e n t s o f s o c i a l i z a t i o n a n d d e v e l o p m e n t t h r o u g h o u t l i f e ; a n d a s c a p a b l e o f d e v e l o p i n g i n t e n s e b o n d s o f l o y a l t y a n d s u p p o r t . I t a l s o e x t e n d s t h e u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f Bank a n d K a h n ' s a s s e r t i o n t h a t s i b l i n g b o n d i n g o c c u r s p r i m a r i l y a s a r e s u l t o f p a r e n t a l a b a n d o n m e n t . The s t u d y s u p p o r t s t h e i d e a t h a t p a r e n t a l a b a n d o n m e n t i s one m a j o r f a c t o r , b u t i t i s n o t t h e o n l y one a n d d o e s n o t a p p e a r t o be n e c e s s a r i l y t h e " p r i m a r y " f a c t o r . A s w o u l d be e x p e c t e d , o t h e r f a c t o r s a l s o a p p e a r t o p r o m o t e s t r o n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s . P r e s e t e n v i r o n m e n t a l c o n d i t i o n s a n d p o s i t i v e p a r e n t a l v a l u e s a n d a c t i o n s c a n a l s o p r o d u c e a c o n d u c i v e a t m o s p h e r e w h i c h i s t h e n d e p e n d e n t on t h e n a t u r e a n d c o m p a t i b i l i t y o f t h e s i s t e r s t h e m s e l v e s a n d what t h e y do t o m a i n t a i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . 78 O t h e r c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s f o u n d t o be d e s c r i p t i v e o f t h e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p - - t h a t s i b i n t e r a c t i o n i s l a r g e l y v o l u n t a r y a n d e g a l i t a r i a n ( A l d o u s , 1 9 7 8 ) ; t h a t s i b l i n g s p r o v i d e m a j o r s o c i o - e m o t i o n a l f u n c t i o n s ( C i c i r e l l i , 1982) a n d m a i n t a i n r e g u l a r and f r e q u e n t c o n t a c t ( A d a m s , 1 9 6 8 ) ; a n d t h a t t h e y r e l y on one a n o t h e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y d u r i n g c r i s i s ( T r o l l , 1971) a r e a l l s u p p o r t e d i n t h i s s t u d y b e t w e e n a d u l t s i s t e r s . The i m p o r t a n t a n d u n i q u e q u a l i t i e s o f t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p a r e v o i c e d i n t h i s s t u d y by women who r e c o g n i z e a n d v a l u e t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s a s i n t i m a t e , e m p a t h i c a n d s u p p o r t i v e . T h e s e q u a l i t i e s , p r e v i o u s l y a c k n o w l e d g e d i n t h e women 's s t u d i e s l i t e r a t u r e , a s f e m a l e a f f i l i a t i o n s k i l l s a c c e n t u a t e t h e u n i q u e n a t u r e o f t h e s i s t e r b o n d , w h i c h s h o u l d be r e c o g n i z e d a p a r t f r o m t h e l a r g e r s i b l i n g s t r u c t u r e . A w a r e n e s s o f t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p , o f i t s d u r a b i l i t y , a n d t r e m e n d o u s p o t e n t i a l f o r l i f e l o n g i n t i m a c y a n d s u p p o r t , p r o v i d e s a new p e r s p e c t i v e a n d i n s i g h t i n t o d e a l i n g w i t h a v a r i e t y o f i s s u e s f a c e d by i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h s i s t e r s ( a n d b r o t h e r s ) , f o r t h e i r p a r e n t s a n d c o u n s e l l o r s . 2 . P r a c t i c a l S i g n i f i c a n c e . I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r C o u n s e l l i n g : The p r e v i o u s t h e o r e t i c a l n e g l e c t h a s m i n i m i z e d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f a p o s i t i v e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p a n d t h e r e f o r e h a s l i m i t e d t h e u s e o f s i b l i n g - s p e c i f i c c o n c e p t s i n i n d i v i d u a l a n d f a m i l y c o u n s e l l i n g . Bank a n d Kahn (1982a ) b e l i e v e t h a t 79 t h e r e h a s n o t b e e n an o u t s t a n d i n g m o d e l f o r s i b l i n g b a s e d t h e r a p y b e c a u s e h e l p i n g p r o f e s s i o n a l s a r e n o t t a u g h t a b o u t t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f a n d how t o d e a l w i t h m a j o r s i b l i n g e v e n t s ( a p a r t f r o m r i v a l r y ) . T h e y a l s o a s s e r t t h a t t h e r a p i s t s a r e i n v e s t e d i n m a i n t a i n i n g a u t h o r i t a r i a n p a r e n t - c h i l d r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h c l i e n t s / p a t i e n t s r a t h e r t h a n a more e g a l i t a r i a n r e l a t i o n s h i p . By a v o i d i n g t h e s t r e n g t h a n d power i n s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n a n d m a i n t a i n i n g p a r e n t a l c o n t r o l , t h e t h e r a p i s t g i v e s t h e m e s s a g e t h a t p a r e n t s a n d p a r e n t - l i k e t h e r a p i s t s h a v e t h e power a n d c o n t r o l a n d t h e s i b l i n g s do n o t . T h e y c o n t e n d t h a t " s i b l i n g - l i k e r e l a t i o n s h i p s , i f t h e t h e r a p i s t p e r m i t s t h e m , a r e more e g a l i t a r i a n , p r o m o t e f a s t e r c h a n g e a n d d e n y t h e p a t i e n t t h e i l l u s i o n t h a t he o r s h e c a n be p r o t e c t e d a n d n u r t u r e d i n t e r m i n a b l y " ( p . 3 0 0 ) . T h i s c o n c e p t a l s o i s p a r a l l e l e d i n f e m i n i s t c o u n s e l l i n g t h e o r y . i t i s r e c o g n i z e d t h a t an e g a l i t a r i a n c l i e n t / t h e r a p i s t r e l a t i o n s h i p p r o m o t e s g r o w t h a n d a u t o n o m y a n d m i n i m i z e s d e p e n d e n c i e s " . . . a t h e r a p y o f e q u a l s w i l l h a v e a g r e a t e r g e n e r a l i z a t i o n o f e f f e c t s t o r e a l l i f e t h a n c o n v e n t i o n a l t h e r a p y b e c a u s e i t a f f o r d s t h e c l i e n t a c h a n c e t o l e a r n e g a l i t a r i a n i n t e r a c t i o n b e t w e e n p e e r s r a t h e r t h a n t o s e e human r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n t e r m s o f p a r e n t a n d c h i l d , o r e x p e r t a n d s u p p l i c a n t " ( S t u r d i v a n t , 1980 , p . 1 5 9 ) . 80 T h e r e c o g n i t i o n o f t h e p r o f o u n d i m p a c t s i b l i n g s c a n h a v e on one a n o t h e r c a n p r o v i d e v i t a l i n f o r m a t i o n f o r a c o u n s e l l o r o r t h e r a p i s t . By k n o w i n g e a c h o t h e r a t a " c o r e " l e v e l , s i b l i n g s h a v e e n o r m o u s p o w e r , a n d i f t h i s s o u r c e c a n be t a p p e d , t h e t h e r a p e u t i c p r o c e s s c a n be e n h a n c e d . T h i s i s p a r t i c u l a r i l y t r u e f o r s i b l i n g s c l o s e i n a g e - - whose l i f e e x p e r i e n c e s a r e s i m i l a r a n d who i d e n t i f y c l o s e l y w i t h e a c h o t h e r . I t i s t h e l o y a l t y b e t w e e n s i b s t h a t t h e t h e r a p i s t c o u n t s on i n i n t e r v e n t i o n . L o y a l t y t i e s w i l l a l s o d e t e r m i n e t h e a p p r o p r i a t e n e s s o f w o r k i n g w i t h t h e s i b l i n g s o f an i n d i v i d u a l i n t h e r a p y . Bank a n d Kahn (1982) s u g g e s t t h a t e v e n i f t h e s i b l i n g s a r e i n a d i s t a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p , most a r e w i l l i n g t o p a r t i c i p a t e a s " c o n s u l t a n t s " . A f t e r an i n i t i a l s e s s i o n t h e t h e r a p i s t c a n d e t e r m i n e how a p p r o p r i a t e i t w o u l d be t o i n v o l v e t h e s i b l i n g a s a t h e r a p e u t i c a l l y . Bank a n d Kahn (1982) make r e f e r e n c e t o t h e r a p i s t s who h a v e w o r k e d w i t h t h e s i b l i n g s o f i n d i v i d u a l s i n t h e r a p y w i t h e q u i v o c a l r e s u l t s . T h e i r e x p l a n a t i o n i s t h a t n o t a l l s i b l i n g s c a n be b r o u g h t t o g e t h e r t o r e s o l v e d i f f e r e n c e s a n d t o s u p p o r t t h e one i n " c r i s i s " , a n d t h e y e m p h a s i z e t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f e x p l o r i n g t h e s i b r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h i n i n d i v i d u a l c o u n s e l l i n g s e s s i o n s , t h e n i f i t seems a p p r o p r i a t e , t o a r r a n g e f o r t h e s i b l i n g s t o work t o g e t h e r . I f a p o t e n t i a l l y u s e f u l s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p i s c o n f l i c t e d t h e t h e r a p i s t s h o u l d t a k e some t i m e t o e x p l o r e t h e 81 d i f f i c u l t i e s , r e s e n t m e n t s a n d m i s u n d e r s t a n d i n g s w i t h t h e i n d i v i d u a l i n t h e r a p y , t h e n w i t h t h e s i b l i n g s u b g r o u p . A s a d u l t s , s i b l i n g s c a n be t a u g h t t o u s e more e f f e c t i v e c o m u n i c a t i o n s s k i l l s a n d c a n work a t r e s o l v i n g t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s i n a m a t u r e m a n n e r . When a p o s i t i v e b o n d d o e s e x i s t , s i b l i n g s c a n p r o v i d e p o w e r f u l l e v e l s o f s u p p o r t f o r t h e one s u f f e r i n g d i f f i c u l t y . T h e y c a n p r o b l e m - s o l v e t o g e t h e r , t r y o u t new b e h a v i o r w i t h e a c h o t h e r a n d be v e r y e f f e c t i v e i n r o l e p l a y t e c h n i q u e s g i v e n t h e i r common f a m i l i a r i t y w i t h p a r e n t s a n d t h e f a m i l y s i t u a t i o n . T h e t h e r a p i s t c a n a s s i s t s i b l i n g s t o g e t p a s t r i g i d f a m i l y r o l e p a t t e r n s , t o a c c e p t d e v e l o p m e n t a l c h a n g e s a n d t o h e l p c r e a t e e q u a l i t y b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s , t h u s s h o w i n g them t h e p o t e n t i a l power a n d s t r e n g t h i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . W o r k i n g w i t h t h e s i b l i n g ( s ) o f an i n d i v i d u a l i n n e e d , c a n p r o v i d e a t h e r a p i s t w i t h a p o w e r f u l t o o l , by p r o v i d i n g more o p t i o n s a n d g r e a t e r l e v e r a g e i n c o u n s e l l i n g . The b e n e f i t s t o t h e c l i e n t a l s o a r e m a x i m i z e d . By r e a f f i r m i n g t i e s b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s who h a v e been b l o c k e d , o r by s t r e n g t h e n i n g a l r e a d y p o s i t i v e , b u t weak t i e s — t h e s u p p o r t n e t w o r k o f e a c h s i b l i n g i s r e i n f o r c e d . T h i s c a n be e s s e n t i a l f o r b o t h men a n d women s u f f e r i n g f r o m s t r e s s o r f a c i n g a c r i s i s . As s i b l i n g s o f t e n w i l l i n g l y p r o v i d e t h e i r a s s i s t a n c e when t h e y a r e aware o f t h e i r s i b l i n g ' s p a i n , h e l p i n g t o r e c o n n e c t t h i s n a t u r a l l i n k c o u l d be a p r e v e n t a t i v e m e a s u r e 82 f o r t h e c l i e n t ' s f u t u r e w e l l - b e i n g . F o r women, t h i s c o u l d be e s p e c i a l l y i m p o r t a n t . As p r e v i o u s l y s h o w n , women s u f f e r d r a s t i c a l l y when c u t o f f f r o m i m p o r t a n t s u p p o r t i v e a f f i l i a t i o n s . R e a f f i r m i n g f e m a l e t i e s c a n be v i t a l - - a s women a r e g e n e r a l l y q u i t e e f f i c i e n t i n a f f i l i a t i v e n u r t u r i n g s k i l l s a n d c a n p r o v i d e r e c i p r o c a l s u p p o r t a n d u n d e r s t a n d i n g t o one a n o t h e r , w h i c h i n t u r n , h e l p s t o e n h a n c e s e l f - e s t e e m a n d l i f e s a t i s f a c t i o n . F e m i n i s t c o u n s e l l i n g r e c o g n i z e s t h i s s t r e n g t h i n women 's r e l a t i o n s h i p s . I t i s one o f i t ' s m a j o r t h e r a p e u t i c g o a l s t o i m p r o v e t h e q u a l i t y o f women 's r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h o t h e r women a n d t o h e l p women t o t r u s t , r e s p e c t a n d v a l u e t h e s e b o n d s ( S t u r d i v a n t , 1 9 8 0 ) . Due t o t h e o r e t i c a l s i m i l a r i t i e s , s i b l i n g b a s e d t h e r a p y l e n d s i t s e l f w e l l t o a f e m i n i s t c o u n s e l l i n g f r a m e w o r k . By a c t u a l l y w o r k i n g w i t h a woman a n d h e r s i s t e r ( s ) a f e m i n i s t c o u n s e l l o r m i g h t work w i t h t h e i s s u e s w h i c h s p l i t t h e women p e r h a p s c o m p e t i t i o n a n d / o r g i v i n g p r i o r i t y t o m a l e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . T h e n , t h e s e i s s u e s c o u l d be u s e d a s a b a s i s f o r t a l k i n g a b o u t how s o c i e t y wedges women a p a r t . The women may want t o l o o k a t t h e i r e a r l y f a m i l y e x p e r i e n c e a n d / o r e x p l o r e t h e o r i g i n s o f t h e i r c o n f l i c t . Once t h e b a r r i e r s a r e d i s c e r n e d , t h e women c a n b e g i n t o r e a f f i r m t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p a n d d i s c o v e r what t h e y h a v e been m i s s i n g . H e l p i n g t h e women t o v a l u e t h e m s e l v e s a n d t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h e a c h o t h e r , 83 a n d e m p h a s i z i n g t h e l i f e l o n g p o t e n t i a l o f t h e i r b o n d c a n e n c o u r a g e women t o r e d i r e c t t h e i r l o y a l t i e s . T h e a p p l i c a t i o n o f s i b l i n g - c o n c e p t s c a n be u s e d i n a v a r i e t y o f s e t t i n g s . Bank a n d Kahn (1982a) s u g g e s t t h i s r e s o u r c e c a n be u s e f u l i n g r o u p t h e r a p y , by i n d i c a t i n g how members may be r e l a t i n g t o e a c h o t h e r b a s e d on e a r l y s i b l i n g r o l e p a t t e r n s a n d power s t r u g g l e s ; i n m a r i t a l c o u n s e l l i n g by h e l p i n g p a r t n e r s t o a c c e p t t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f s i b l i n g l o y a l t y b o n d s , i f t h e s e a r e a t h r e a t ; a n d i n f a m i l y c o u n s e l l i n g , where c h i l d r e n , when s e e n i n t h e s i b l i n g s u b g r o u p , p r o v i d e i m p o r t a n t a n d h e l p f u l i n f o r m a t i o n . I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r P a r e n t i n g : F r o m t h e f i n d i n g s , i t i s a p p a r e n t t h a t s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p p a t t e r n s e v o l v e f r o m an i n t r i c a t e c o m b i n a t i o n o f p a r e n t a l i n f l u e n c e , t h e p a r t i c u l a r g i v e n s o f t h e e n v i r o n m e n t a l c o n t e x t a n d t h e s i s t e r s t h e m s e l v e s . A l t h o u g h t h e p u r p o s e o f t h e r e s e a r c h was n o t c o n c e r n e d s p e c i f i c a l l y w i t h a p p r o p r i a t e c h i l d r e a r i n g s t r a t e g i e s , t h e f i n d i n g s a n d c o n c l u s i o n s l e a d t o some r e c o m m e n d a t i o n s f o r p a r e n t s who want t o f a c i l i t a t e p o s i t i v e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s . P a r e n t s c o n s c i o u s l y a n d u n c o n s c i o u s l y i n f l u e n c e t h e s i s t e r i n t e r - r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h e age s p a n b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s i s i m p o r t a n t - - t h e c l o s e r s i b l i n g s a r e i n a g e , t h e more s i m i l a r t h e i r p e r c e p t i o n s a n d common l i f e e x p e r i e n c e s . S u c h 84 s i m i l a r i t i e s a r e e n h a n c e d by c l o s e p h y s i c a l p r o x i m i t y , s u c h a s s h a r i n g a b e d r o o m , w a l k i n g t o a n d f r o m s c h o o l t o g e t h e r a n d / o r l i v i n g i n a g e o g r a p h i c a l l y i s o l a t e d a r e a . P a r e n t s must r e c o g n i z e t h a t t h e s i b l i n g s n e e d s p a c e a n d t i m e a l o n e t o g e t h e r t o n e g o t i a t e t h e b o u n d s o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h i s i n c l u d e s a l l o w i n g s i b l i n g s t o s e t t l e t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s . Bank a n d Kahn (1982a) s u g g e s t t h a t t h e m o s t e f f e c t i v e p a r e n t s " u s e t h e i r power t o e n f o r c e r u l e s a n d a d m i n i s t e r c o n s e q u e n c e s f o r v i o l e n t o r a b u s i v e b e h a v i o r ; b u t t h e y a l s o p o s s e s s a f i n e l y t u n e d s e n s e o f when t o i n t e r v e n e a n d when t o l e t t h e c h i l d r e n work i t o u t t h e m s e l v e s " ( p . 2 0 2 ) . P a r e n t a l v a l u e s , e x p e c t a t i o n s a n d m o d e l l i n g b e h a v i o r a l s o i n f l u e n c e s i b r e l a t i o n s . T h o s e p a r e n t s , who v a l u e f a m i l y u n i t y a n d p o s i t i v e s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s , a n d i n s t i l l t h e s e v a l u e s by e n c o u r a g i n g s i b l i n g s t o h e l p a n d s u p p o r t one a n o t h e r o f t e n s e e p o s i t i v e r e s u l t s . M o d e l i n g p o s i t i v e m a r i t a l a n d / o r s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s c a n a l s o be a p o w e r f u l i n f l u e n c e , a s w e l l a s p r o v i d i n g t h e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r s i b l i n g s t o i n t e r a c t a n d h a v e f u n ( i e . f a m i l y c e l e b r a t i o n s ) . P a r e n t s a l s o n e e d t o be aware o f t h e e f f e c t s o f c o m p a r i n g s i b l i n g s . A s R o s s a n d M i l g r a m (1982) p o i n t o u t , t h e most i n t e n s e a n d l o n g l a s t i n g r i v a l r i e s a r e c a u s e d by c o m p a r i s o n s a n d c o m p e t i t i o n o v e r a c h i e v e m e n t , i n t e l l i g e n c e , p h y s i c a l a t t r a c t i v e n e s s , s o c i a l c o m p e t e n c e o r m a t u r i t y w h i c h i s / a r e o v e r l y e m p h a s i z e d by a p a r e n t a n d p e r c e i v e d a s u n c o n t r o l l a b l e 85 by t h e c h i l d r e n . T h e y f i n d t h a t c o n f l i c t a n d r i v a l r y c a n be m i n i m i z e d c o n s i d e r a b l y by a v o i d i n g f a v o r i t i s m , a n d by r e c o g n i z i n g i n d i v i d u a l t a l e n t s a n d a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s . When s i b l i n g s , p a r t i c u l a r i l y t h o s e c l o s e i n a g e , a r e t r e a t e d u n i q u e l y and v a l u e d f o r t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l s t r e n g t h s , t h e y c a n d i f f e r e n t i a t e more e a s i l y f r o m one a n o t h e r , a s w e l l a s m a i n t a i n a p o s i t i v e i n t e r - r e l a t i o n s h i p . I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r S i s t e r i n g : " T h e q u a l i t y o f t h e ( s i b l i n g ) r e l a t i o n s h i p w i l l be d e e p l y a f f e c t e d by t h e p a r e n t s , b u t i t i s l e f t i n c r e a s i n g l y t o e a c h s i b l i n g t o d e t e r m i n e t h e f i n a l s h a p e o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p " (Bank & K a h n , 1982 , p . 50) . F r o m t h e i n t e r v i e w s w i t h women who h a v e p o s i t i v e a n d s u p p o r t i v e b o n d s , i m p o r t a n t i n f o r m a t i o n e m e r g e d c o n c e r n i n g t h e n a t u r e o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n d what women d i d t o a c t i v e l y m a i n t a i n t h e m . C o m m u n i c a t i o n was f o u n d t o be b o t h a m a j o r s t r e n g t h a n d a d y n a m i c a c c o m p l i s h m e n t . A l t h o u g h some s i s t e r s f e l t a d e e p , i n t u i t i v e u n d e r s t a n d i n g f o r one a n o t h e r f r o m e a r l y c h i l d h o o d , o t h e r s a t t a i n e d a m e a n i n g f u l l e v e l a t l a t e r s t a g e s o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p . What was v e r y i m p o r t a n t f o r t h e women, was t h e d e e p l e v e l o f t r u s t a n d h o n e s t y i n t h e i r i n t e r a c t i o n s . B e i n g e m p a t h i c , s e n s i t i v e a n d n o n - c r i t i c a l were a l s o e s s e n t i a l i n 86 a c h i e v i n g an a t m o s p h e r e o f c o m f o r t , s e c u r i t y a n d s u p p o r t i v e n e s s . A n o t h e r i s s u e w h i c h t h e s e women d e a l t w i t h s u c c e s s f u l l y was " g r o w t h a n d c h a n g e " . T h i s meant t h a t o l d e r s i s t e r s g a v e up some o f t h e i r power and c o n t r o l a n d y o u n g e r s i s t e r s t o o k more r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h i s was an i m p o r t a n t d e v e l o p m e n t a l s t a g e f o r a m a j o r i t y o f t h e women i n t e r v i e w e d a n d r e s u l t e d i n a more e g a l i t a r i a n r e l a t i o n s h i p w h i c h was l e s s c r i t i c a l , more r e s p e c t i n g , a n d more i n t i m a t e . A l l o w i n g f o r t h e c h a n g e a n d v a l u i n g t h e e q u a l i t y i n t h e new r e l a t i o n s h i p p r o v i d e d t h e s e women w i t h a more s a t i s f y i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p . C o m p e t i t i o n a n d c o n f l i c t c a n be m a j o r o b s t a c l e s t o a p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p . T h e s e i s s u e s were managed i n a v a r i e t y o f w a y s . Some women s a i d t h a t t h e y a v o i d e d c o m p e t i t i o n by d e v e l o p i n g o p p o s i t e a s p e c t s o f t h e i r p e r s o n a l i t i e s a n d d i f f e r e n t t a l e n t s . T h i s i s an e f f e c t i v e d e f e n s e a g a i n s t s i b l i n g r i v a l r y , a c c o r d i n g t o S c h a c t e r (1982) who o b s e r v e d t h a t by d e i d e n t i f y i n g w i t h e a c h o t h e r , s i b l i n g s p r o v i d e e a c h o t h e r w i t h e n o u g h p s y c h o l o g i c a l s p a c e , a n d c a n t h e r e b y a d m i r e e a c h o t h e r ' s a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s f r o m w i t h i n t h e i r own n i c h e i n t h e f a m i l y . O t h e r women a v o i d c o n f l i c t by r e c o g n i z i n g e a c h o t h e r ' s n e e d f o r p r i v a c y a n d p h y s i c a l s p a c e a c h i e v i n g a b a l a n c e o f t h e l e n g t h a n d f r e q u e n c y o f v i s i t s a n d t i m e a p a r t . T h i s 87 s e n s i t i v e a w a r e n e s s was a l s o c o n s i d e r e d i m p o r t a n t when d i s c u s s i n g a p o t e n t i a l l y d i f f i c u l t s u b j e c t . One woman e x e m p l i f i e d t h i s by s a y i n g , " i t i s a m a t t e r o f w a i t i n g u n t i l s h e s a y s h e r b o y f r i e n d i s a " s c h m u c k " , b e f o r e I a g r e e w i t h h e r , a n d s a y , 'I a l w a y s knew he w a s ' " . When c o n f l i c t s do e r r u p t , women s a i d t h a t t a l k i n g o p e n l y a b o u t t h e p r o b l e m u s u a l l y h e l p s t o r e s o l v e i t a n d r e a f f i r m t h e b o n d . L a s t l y , i t was r e c o g n i z e d t h a t a s t r o n g b o n d b e t w e e n s i s t e r s must be b a s e d on t h e v a l u e t h a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p i s i m p o r t a n t . T h i s v a l u e i s d e m o n s t r a t e d by l o y a l t y t o one a n o t h e r a n d . b y i n v e s t i n g a c e r t a i n amount o f t i m e a n d e n e r g y i n t o t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p . F o r most women, t h i s r e a l i z a t i o n e v o l v e d a s t h e women m a t u r e d a n d r e c o g n i z e d t h a t t h e i r a d u l t s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p was v e r y s p e c i a l . C . L I M I T S OF THE STUDY 1. G e n e r a l i z a b i 1 i t y . The g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y o f t h e r e s u l t s i s l i m i t e d t o t h e p o p u l a t i o n o f women, who a s i n t h e p r e s e n t s t u d y , a r e u n i v e r s i t y s t u d e n t s b e t w e e n t h e t h e a g e s o f 17 a n d 35 a n d who, a c k n o w l e d g e s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p . A l t h o u g h t h i s n a r r o w s t h e p o p u l a t i o n c o n s i d e r a b l y , t h e p r e l i m i n a r y s a m p l i n g o f 110 u n i v e r s i t y women i n t h e e a r l y s t a g e o f t h i s r e s e a r c h i n d i c a t e d t h a t a l a r g e number o f women r e p o r t e d s u c h p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . A l s o , g i v e n t h e s u g g e s t i o n t h a t women f r o m l o w e r s o c i o - e c o n o m i c l e v e l s (who a r e u n d e r r e p r e s e n t e d i n t h i s 88 s t u d y ) r e p o r t h i g h e r i n c i d e n t s o f p o s i t i v e s i s t e r b o n d s t h a n m i d d l e a n d u p p e r c l a s s e s ( A d a m s , 1968; K o m a r o v s k y , 1967; S e i d e n & B a r t , 1975) i t w o u l d seem t h a t t h e p r e v a l e n c e o f s u p p o r t i v e a d u l t s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s i s h i g h i n t h e g e n e r a l p o p u l a t i o n . I t must a l s o be n o t e d t h a t t h e n a t u r e o f t h e v o l u n t e e r s a m p l e may n o t be r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f a g e n e r a l p o p u l a t i o n . 2 . M e a s u r i n g I n s t r u m e n t s . T h e m e a s u r i n g i n s t r u m e n t s u s e d a l s o l i m i t t h e f i n d i n g s . T h e S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e was n o t u s e d i n i t s c o m p l e t e f o r m . I t was s h o r t e n e d t o i n c r e a s e r e s p o n s e a n d c o m p l e t i o n r a t e s . F o r p u r p o s e s o f t h i s r e s e a r c h t h e a b b r e v i a t e d v e r s i o n a l l o w e d f o r a w i d e r a n g e o f women t o be s a m p l e d , a n d was u s e d a s a s e l e c t i o n i n s t r u m e n t f o r t h e i n t e r v i e w p r o c e s s . O b s e r v i n g L a G a i p a ' s c a u t i o n , t h a t i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o m e a s u r e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s a n d f r i e n d s b e c a u s e a s y e t , t h e r e a r e no m e a s u r e m e n t t e c h n i q u e s w h i c h a r e u s e f u l f o r e q u a t i n g f r i e n d s a n d k i n a l o n g t h e same m e t r i c d i m e n s i o n s , i t was d e c i d e d t o a n a l y z e t h e f r i e n d s h i p c o n t e n t o f s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s a s C l a r k a n d L a G a i p a h a d d o n e , a n d t o u s e L a G a i p a ' s (1977) F r i e n d s h i p I n v e n t o r y . T o d e c r e a s e c o g n i t i v e d i s t o r t i o n s , a c t u a l f r i e n d s h i p b e h a v i o r s a s o p p o s e d t o f r i e n d s h i p e x p e c t a n c i e s were d r a w n . B u t d e s p i t e t h e s e a c t i o n s t r u e c o m p a r i s o n s c a n n o t be made b e t w e e n t h e two t y p e s o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s , a n d t h e r e f o r e t h e c o m p a r i s o n s a r e s p e c u l a t i v e . 89 As w e l l , t h e C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e was u s e d t o f i n d f a c i l i t a t i n g f a c t o r s i n t h e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p . A s a d e s c r i p t i v e t e c h n i q u e , t h e s e f i n d i n g s a r e a l s o o f a s u g g e s t i v e , r a t h e r t h a n a c o n c l u s i v e n a t u r e . F u r t h e r r e s e a r c h i n v o l v i n g t h e t e s t i n g o f s t a t i s t i c a l h y p o t h e s e s w o u l d be n e c e s s a r y i n o r d e r t o r e p o r t c o n c l u s i v e r e s u l t s . F i n a l l y , t h e r e s e a r c h f o c u s s e d o n l y on t h e n a t u r e o f a n d f a c i l i t a t i n g f e a t u r e s o f p o s i t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . T h i s r e s t r i c t i o n s i g n i f i c a n t l y n a r r o w s t h e w i d e p o s s i b l e r a n g e o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s a n d i n f l u e n c e s e x p e r i e n c e d by s i s t e r s , b u t i t was c o n s i d e r e d a n e c e s s a r y b o u n d a r y f o r t h i s s t u d y . D. FUTURE I N V E S T I G A T I O N T h e e x p l o r a t i o n o f s i b l i n g b o n d s h a s o n l y r e c e n t l y b e g u n . T h i s s t u d y h a s s u g g e s t e d t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g f e m a l e s a m e - s e x s i b l i n g b o n d s f r o m m a l e a n d c r o s s - s e x c o m b i n a t i o n s . T h e s e s h o u l d a l s o be i n v e s t i g a t e d s e p a r a t e l y , p e r h a p s u s i n g an e x p l o r a t o r y m e t h o d w h i c h c o u l d h i g h l i g h t t h e u n i q u e f e a t u r e s o f e a c h . A s f o r t h e c o n t i n u e d i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i s t e r s , i t w o u l d now be a p p r o p r i a t e t o t e s t t h e d e r i v e d c a t e g o r i e s q u a n t i t a t i v e l y w i t h h y p o t h e s i s t e s t i n g . A l s o i n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p o r r o l e o f a s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r b o n d i n a ) s o c i a l s u p p o r t , b) k i n s h i p s u p p o r t , c ) h o m o s o c i a l i t y a n d d) w e l l - b e i n g a n d / o r l i f e s a t i s f a c t i o n w o u l d be o f i n t e r e s t a n d v a l u e . 90 F u r t h e r , t h e s t u d y o f s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s s h o u l d be e x t e n d e d t o i n c l u d e a l l s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , b o t h p o s i t i v e a n d n e g a t i v e , a n d t o d o h y p o t h e s i s t e s t i n g o f t h e d e r i v e d f a c i l i t a t i n g f a c t o r s on a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s a m p l e o f t h e e n t i r e r a n g e o f s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s . I n c i d e n t s w h i c h h i n d e r a s u p p o r t i v e b o n d s h o u l d a l s o be e x a m i n e d i n t h i s c o n t e x t . G i v e n t h a t a s u p p o r t i v e s i s t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p c a n be v e r y i m p o r t a n t i n a w o m e n ' s s u p p o r t n e t w o r k f u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f t h i s b o n d h a s d i r e c t i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r t h e m e n t a l h e a l t h a n d l i f e s a t i s f a c t i o n o f many women. E . SUMMARY T h e s t r e n g t h a n d s i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h e a d u l t s i s t e r b o n d h a v e been a c k n o w l e d g e d i n t h i s s t u d y . I t i s r e c o g n i z e d a n d v a l u e d f o r t h e h i g h l e v e l s o f i n t i m a c y , s u p p o r t , a n d u n d e r s t a n d i n g w h i c h p r o v i d e v a l i d a t i o n a n d s a t i s f a c t i o n f o r many women. T h r e e m a j o r c a t e g o r i e s o f f a c t o r s were i d e n t i f i e d w h i c h were r e p o r t e d a s f a c i l i t a t i n g t h e c l o s e a n d s u p p o r t i v e c o n n e c t i o n , i n c l u d i n g : e n v i r o n m e n t a l f a c t o r s , r e l a t i o n s h i p q u a l i t i e s a n d c r i t i c a l l i f e e v e n t s . I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r c o u n s e l l i n g , p a r e n t i n g a n d s i s t e r i n g were drawn f r o m t h e f i n d i n g s a n d f r o m t h e p r o p o s i t i o n t h a t s u p p o r t i v e a n d l o y a l s i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s a r e p o s s i b l e a n d may be a m a j o r s t r e n g t h i n t h e n a t u r a l s u p p o r t s y s t e m s o f women who v a l u e t h e s e b o n d s . 91 R E F E R E N C E S A b r a m o v i t c h , R . , P e p l e r , D . & C a r t e r , C . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . P a t t e r n s o f s i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n among p r e s c h o o l - a g e c h i l d r e n . In Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h ( E d s . ) , S i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( p p . 6 1 - 8 6 ) . New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c i a t e s . A d a m s , B . N . ( 1 9 6 7 ) . I n t e r a c t i o n t h e o r y a n d t h e s o c i a l n e t w o r k . S o c i o m e t r y , 3 0 , 6 4 - 7 8 . A d a m s , B . N . ( 1 9 6 8 ) . K i n s h i p i n an u r b a n s e t t i n g . C h i c a g o : Markham P u b l i s h i n g . A d l e r , A . ( 1 9 5 9 ) . U n d e r s t a n d i n g human n a t u r e . New Y o r k : P r e m i e r B o o k s F a w c e t t P u b l i c a t i o n s . A l d o u s , J . ( 1 9 7 7 ) . F a m i l y i n t e r a c t i o n p a t t e r n s . A n n u a l  R e v i e w o f S o c i o l o g y , 3 , 1 0 5 - 1 3 5 . A l d o u s , J . ( 1 9 7 8 ) . F a m i l y c a r e e r s : D e v e l o p m e n t a l c h a n g e i n  f a m i 1 i e s . New Y o r k : W i l e y . A l l a n , G . ( 1 9 7 7 ) . S i b l i n g s o l i d a r i t y . J o u r n a l o f M a r r i a g e  a n d t h e F a m i l y , 3 9 , 1 7 7 - 1 8 4 . A n d e r s s o n , B . & N i l s s o n , J . ( 1 9 6 4 ) . S t u d i e s i n t h e r e l i a b i l i t y a n d v a l i d i t y o f t h e C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e . J o u r n a l o f A p p l i e d P s y c h o l o g y , 4 8 , 3 9 8 - 4 0 3 . B a n k , S . & K a h n , M . . ( 1 9 8 2 a ) . The s i b l i n g b o n d . New Y o r k : B a s i c B o o k s . B a n k , S . & K a h n , M. ( 1 9 8 2 b ) . I n t e n s e s i b l i n g l o y a l t y . In Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h ( E d s . ) , S i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( p p . 2 5 1 - 2 6 6 ) . New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c i a t e s . B a r r y , H . B a c o n , M . , & C h i l d , I. ( 1 9 5 7 ) . A c r o s s - c u l t u r a l s u r v e y o f some sex d i f f e r e n c e s i n s o c i a l i z a t i o n . J o u r n a l  o f A b n o r m a l a n d S o c i a l P s y c h o l o g y , 5 5 , 3 2 7 - 3 3 8 . B e l l , R. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . F r i e n d s h i p s o f women a n d men. P s y c h o l o g y  o f Women Q u a r t e r l y , 5 , 4 8 2 - 4 1 7 . B e r n a r d , J . ( 1 9 7 3 ) . The f u t u r e o f m a r r i a g e . New Y o r k : Bantam B o o k s . B e r n a r d , J . ( 1 9 7 6 ) . H o m o s o c i a l i t y a n d f e m a l e d e p r e s s i o n . J o u r n a l o f S o c i a l I s s u e s , 3 2 , 2 1 3 - 2 3 8 . 92 B i g e l o w , B . & L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 7 5 ) . C h i l d r e n ' s w r i t t e n d e s c r i p t i o n s o f f r i e n d s h i p : a m u l t i - d i m e n s i o n a l a n a l y s i s . D e v e l o p m e n t a l P s y c h o l o g y , 11 , 8 5 7 - 8 6 8 . B l a u , Z . ( 1 9 7 3 ) . O l d age i n a c h a n g i n g s o c i e t y . New Y o r k : New V i e w p o i n t s . B l i s h e n , B . & M c R o b e r t s , H . (1976) A r e v i s e d s o c i o e c o n o m i c i n d e x f o r o c c u p a t i o n s i n C a n a d a . C a n a d i a n R e v i e w o f  S o c i o l o g y a n d A n t h r o p o l o g y , 13 , 1 3 - 1 9 . B l o c k , J . ( 1 9 8 4 ) . Sex r o l e i d e n t i t y a n d ego d e v e l o p m e n t San F r a n s i s c o : J o s s e y - B a s s . B o s s a r d , J . & B o l l , E . ( 1 9 5 6 ) . The l a r g e f a m i l y s y s t e m P h i l a d e l p h i a : U n i v e r s i t y o f P e n n s y l v a n i a P r e s s . Bowerman , C . & D o b a s h , R. ( 1 9 7 4 ) . S t r u c t u r a l v a r i a t i o n s i n s i b l i n g a f f e c t . J o u r n a l o f M a r r i a g e a n d t h e F a m i l y , 3 5 , 4 8 - 5 4 . :  B r o w n , G . , B h r o l c h a i n , M. & H a r r i s , T . ( 1 9 7 5 ) . S o c i a l c l a s s a n d p s y c h i a t r i c d i s t u r b a n c e among women i n an u r b a n p o p u l a t i o n . S o c i o l o g y , 9 , 2 2 5 - 2 5 4 . B r y a n t , B . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . S i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s i n m i d d l e c h i l d h o o d . In Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h ( E d s . ) , S i b l i n g  r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( p p . ) . New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c i a t e s . C a l d w e l l , M. & P e p l a u , L . ( 1 9 8 0 ) . Sex d i f f e r e n c e s i n s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s h i p s . Sex R o l e s , 8 , 7 2 1 - 7 3 2 . C a p l a n , P . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . B a r r i e r s b e t w e e n women. J a m a i c a , New Y o r k : S p e c t r u m . C h o d o r o w , N . ( 1 9 7 1 ) . B e i n g a n d d o i n g : A c r o s s - c u l t u r a l e x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e s o c i a l i z a t i o n o f m a l e s a n d f e m a l e s . In G o r n i c k a n d M o r a n ( E d s . ) , Women i n a s e x i s t s o c i e t y ( p p . ) . New Y o r k : New A m e r i c a n L i b r a r y . C h o d o r o w , N . ( 1 9 7 8 ) . T h e r e p r o d u c t i o n o f m o t h e r i n g , B e r k e l e y : U n i v e r s i t y o f C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s . C i c i r e l l i , V . ( 1 9 7 7 ) . R e l a t i o n s h i p o f s i b l i n g s t o t h e e l d e r l y p e r s o n ' s f e e l i n g s a n d c o n c e r n s . J o u r n a l o f  G e r o n t o l o g y , 131 , 3 0 9 - 3 1 7 . C i c i r e l l i , V . ( 1 9 8 0 ) . A c o m p a r i s o n o f c o l l e g e women 's f e e l i n g s t o w a r d t h e i r s i b l i n g s a n d p a r e n t s . J o u r n a l o f  M a r r i a g e a n d t h e F a m i l y , 4 2 , 9 5 - 1 0 2 . 93 C i c i r e l l i , V . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . S i b l i n g i n f l u e n c e t h r o u g h o u t t h e l i f e s p a n . In Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h ( E d s . ) , S i b l i n g  r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( p p . 2 6 7 - 2 8 4 ) . New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c l a t e s . C l a r k , A & L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 7 9 ) . S i b l i n g r i v a l r y : The f r i e n d l y a n s w e r . U n p u b l i s h e d m a n u s c r i p t , U n i v e r s i t y o f W i n d s o r . C u m m i n g s , E . & S c h n e i d e r , D . ( 1 9 6 1 ) . S i b l i n g s o l i d a r i t y : A p r o p e r t y o f A m e r i c a n k i n s h i p . A m e r i c a n A n t h r o p o l o g i s t , 63 , 4 9 8 - 5 0 7 . D a v i d s o n , S . & P a c k a r d , T . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . T h e t h e r a p e u t i c v a l u e o f f r i e n d s h i p b e t w e e n women. P s y c h o l o g y o f Women Q u a r t e r l y , 5 , 4 9 5 - 5 1 0 . D e u t s h , G . ( 1 9 4 5 ) . T h e p s y c h o l o g y o f women: A p s y c h o a n a l y t i c  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n . New Y o r k : G r u n e & S t r a t t o n . D u n n , J . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . S i s t e r s a n d b r o t h e r s . C a m b r i d g e , M a . : H a r v a r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . E n g e l h a r t , R . , L o c k h a r t , L . & L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 7 5 ) . F r i e n d s h i p e x p e c t a t i o n s o f p s y c h i a t r i c p a t i e n t s . P a p e r p r e s e n t e d a t S o u t h e a s t e r n P s y c h o l o g i c a l A s s o c i a t i o n , A t l a n t a . E r i k s o n , E . ( 1 9 5 9 ) . C h i l d h o o d a n d s o c i e t y . New Y o r k : N o r t o n . F i s c h e l , E . ( 1 9 7 9 ) . S i s t e r s : L o v e a n d r i v a l r y i n s i d e t h e  f a m i l y a n d b e y o n d . New Y o r k : Morrow & C o . F i s c h e r , J . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . T r a n s i t i o n s i n t h e m o t h e r - d a u g h t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p . J o u r n a l o f M a r r i a g e a n d t h e F a m i l y , 4 3 , 6 1 3 - 6 2 2 . F i s c h e r , J . & N a r u s , L . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . Sex r o l e s a n d i n t i m a c y i n s a m e - s e x a n d o t h e r s e x r e l a t i o n s h i p s . .. P s y c h o l o g y o f  Women Q u a r t e r l y , 5 , 4 4 5 - 4 5 0 . F l a n a g a n , J . C . ( 1 9 5 4 ) . T h e C r i t i c a l I n c i d e n t T e c h n i q u e . P s y c h o l o g i c a l B u l l e t i n , 5 1 , 3 2 7 - 3 5 8 . G i b b s , M . , A u b e r b a c h , D . & F o x , M. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . A c o m p a r i s o n o f m a l e a n d f e m a l e s a m e - s e x f r i e n d s h i p s . I n t e r n a t i o n a l  J o u r n a l o f Women's S t u d i e s , 3 , 2 6 1 - 2 7 2 . G i l l i g a n , C . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . In a d i f f e r e n t v o i c e . C a m b r i d g e , M a . : H a r v a r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . 94 G o v e , W. ( 1 9 7 2 ) . The r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s e x r o l e s , m a r i t a l s t a t u s a n d m e n t a l i l l n e s s . S o c i a l F o r c e s , 5 1 ( 1 ) , 3 4 - 4 4 . G u r i n , G . , V e r o f f , J . & F e l d , S . ( 1 9 6 0 ) . A m e r i c a n s v i e w  t h e i r m e n t a l h e a l t h . New Y o r k : B a s i c B o o k s . H a r r i s , J . ( 1 9 8 4 ) . The r e l e v a n c e o f c a r e e r women 's h o m o s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s t o t h e i r s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n . U n p u b l i s h e d m a s t e r s t h e s i s , U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . H a r t u p , W. ( 1 9 7 5 ) . T h e o r i g i n s o f f r i e n d s h i p . In L e w i s & R o s e n b l u m ( E d s . ) , F r i e n d s h i p a n d p e e r r e l a t i o n s ( p p . ) . New Y o r k : W i l e y . H e i l b r o n n , M. ( 1 9 7 5 ) . A l o n g t i t u d i n a l s t u d y o f t h e d e v e l o p m e n t a l a n d d i s s o l u t i o n o f f r i e n d s h i p . U n p u b l i s h e d d o c t o r a l d i s s e r a t i o n . U n i v e r s i t y o f W i n d s o r . I r i s h , D . ( 1 9 6 4 ) . S i b l i n g i n t e r a c t i o n : A n e g l e c t e d a s p e c t i n f a m i l y l i f e r e s e a r c h . S o c i a l F o r c e s , 4 2 , 2 7 9 - 2 8 8 . K o h u t , H . ( 1 9 7 1 ) . T h e a n a l y s i s o f t h e s e l f . New Y o r k : I n t e r n a t i o n a l U n i v e r s i t i e s P r e s s . K o m a r o v s k y , M. ( 1 9 6 7 ) . B l u e c o l l a r m a r r i a g e . New Y o r k : V i n t a g e B o o k s . L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 6 9 ) . A f a c t o r a n a l y s i s o f f r i e n d s h i p i t e m s . U n p u b l i s h e d m a n u s c r i p t . U n i v e r s i t y o f W i n d s o r . L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 7 2 ) . P e r s o n a l i t y f a c t o r s i n f r i e n d s h i p . P a p e r r e a d a t t h e C a n a d i a n P s y c h o l o g i c a l A s s o c i a t i o n , M o n t r e a l . L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 7 7 ) . T e s t i n g a m u l t i - d i m e n s i o n a l a p p r o a c h t o f r i e n d s h i p . In S . Duck ( E d . ) , T h e o r y a n d p r a c t i c e i n  i n t e r p e r s o n a l a t t r a c t i o n ( p p . 2 4 9 - 2 7 0 ) . N e w Y o r k : A c a d e m i c P r e s s . L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . A s y s t e m s a p p r o a c h t o p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s . In Duck & G i l m o u r ( E d s . ) , P e r s o n a l  r e l a t i o n s h i p s : #1 ( p p . 6 7 - 9 0 ) . New Y o r k : A c a d e m i c P r e s s . L a m b , M. & S u t t o n - S m i t h , B . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . S i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c i a t e s . L a n d y , F . , R o s e n b e r g , B . & S u t t o n - S m i t h , B . ( 1 9 6 9 ) . The e f f e c t s o f l i m i t e d f a t h e r a b s e n c e on c o g n i t i v e d e v e l o p m e n t . C h i l d D e v e l o p m e n t , 4 0 , 9 4 1 - 9 4 4 . 95 L e v e r , J . ( 1 9 7 8 ) . Sex d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e c o m p l e x i t y o f c h i l d r e n ' s p l a y . A m e r i c a n S o c i o l o g i c a l R e v i e w , 4 3 , 4 7 1 - 4 8 3 . L e v y , D . ( 1 9 3 7 ) . S i b l i n g r i v a l r y . A m e r i c a n O r t h o p s y c h i a t r i c A s s o c i a t i o n R e s e a r c h M o n o g r a p h , n o . 2 . L i c h e r o n , J . & L a G a i p a , J . ( 1 9 7 1 ) . The F r i e n d s h i p E x p e c t a n c y I n v e n t o r y . P a p e r p r e s e n t e d a t t h e C a n a d i a n P s y c h o l o g i c a l A s s o c i a t i o n , W i n n e p e g . L i p m a n - B l u m e n , J . ( 1 9 7 6 ) . T o w a r d a h o m o s o c i a l t h e o r y o f sex r o l e s . In R e a g a n & B l a x a l l ( E d s . ) , Women a n d t h e work  p l a c e ( p p . 1 5 - 3 1 ) . C h i c a g o : U n i v e r s i t y o f C h i c a g o P r e s s . M c C a r t h y , B . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . S t u d y i n g p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s . In Duck & G i l m o u r ( E d s . ) , P e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s : #1 ( p p . 2 3 - 4 6 ) . New Y o r k : A c a d e m i c P r e s s . M c C o n v i l l e , B . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . S i s t e r s . L o n d o n : Pan B o o k s . M c G h e e , J . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . T h e e f f e c t s o f s i b l i n g s on t h e l i f e s a t i s f a c t i o n o f t h e r u r a l e l d e r l y . J o u r n a l o f M a r r i a g e  a n d t h e F a m i l y , 4 7 , 8 5 - 9 1 . M c N a r o n , T . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . T h e s i s t e r b o n d . New Y o r k : P e r g a m o n P r e s s . M e a d , M. ( 1 9 7 2 ) . B l a c k b e r r y w i n t e r . New Y o r k : W i l l i a m M o r r o w . M i l l e r , J . ( 1 9 7 6 ) . T o w a r d a new p s y c h o l o g y o f women. B o s t o n : B e a c o n P r e s s . O b e r n d o r f , C . ( 1 9 2 9 ) . P s y c h o a n a l y s i s o f s i b l i n g s . J o u r n a l  o f P s y c h i a t r y , 1 0 0 7 - 1 0 2 0 . P a r s o n s , T . & B a l e s , R. ( 1 9 5 5 ) . F a m i l y , s o c i a l i z a t i o n a n d  i n t e r a c t i o n p r o c e s s e s . G l e n c o e , 1 1 1 . : F r e e P r e s s . P a t t i s o n , E . , L l a m a s , R . , & H u r d , G . ( 1 9 7 9 ) . S o c i a l n e t w o r k m e d i a t i o n o f a n x i e t y . P s y c h i a t r i c A n n a l s , 9 , 5 6 - 5 7 . R o s e n b e r g , B . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . L i f e s p a n p e r s o n a l i t y s t a b i l i t y i n s i b l i n g s t a t u s . In Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h ( E d s . ) , S i b l i n g  r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( p p . 1 6 7 - 2 2 4 ) . New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c i a t e s . S a f i l i o s - R o t h s c h i I d , C . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . T o w a r d a s o c i a l p s y c h o l o g y o f r e l a t i o n s h i p s . P s y c h o l o g y o f Women Q u a r t e r l y , 5 , 96 S a r a s o n , I., L e v i n e , H . , B a s h a m , R . , & S a r a s o n , B . ( 1 9 8 3 ) . A s s e s s i n g s o c i a l s u p p o r t : The S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e . J o u r n a l o f P e r s o n a l i t y a n d S o c i a l  P s y c h o l o g y , 4 4 , 1 2 7 - 1 3 9 . S c h a c h t e r , F . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . S i b l i n g d e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n a n d s p l i t - p a r e n t i d e n t i f i c a t i o n : A f a m i l y t e t r a d . In Lamb & S u t t o n - S m i t h ( E d s . ) , S i b l i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p s ( 1 2 3 - 1 5 2 ) . New J e r s e y : E r l b a u m A s s o c i a t e s . S c h a v e , B . - & C i r e l l o , J . ( 1 9 8 3 ) . I d e n t i t y a n d I n t i m a c y i n  T w i n s . New Y o r k : P r a e g e r . S c h o o l e r , C . ( 1 9 7 2 ) . B i r t h o r d e r e f f e c t s : Not h e r e , n o t now. P s y c h o l o g i c a l B u l l e t i n , 7 8 , 1 6 1 - 1 7 5 . S e i d e n , A . & B a r t , P . ( 1 9 7 5 ) . Woman t o woman: I s s i s t e r h o o d p o w e r f u l ? In B l a z e r ( E d . ) , O l d f a m i l y / n e w f a m i l y ( 1 8 9 - 2 2 8 ) . New Y o r k : D . V a n N o s t r a n d . S m i t h - R o s e n b e r g , C . ( 1 9 7 5 ) . T h e f e m a l e w o r l d o f l o v e a n d r i t u a l : R e l a t i o n s b e t w e e n women. S i g n s : J o u r n a l o f Women  i n C u l t u r e a n d S o c i e t y , 1, 2 - 2 9 . S u t t o n - S m i t h , B . & R o s e n b e r g , B . ( 1 9 7 0 ) . The s i b l i n g . New Y o r k : H o l t , R i n e h a r t & W i n s t o n . S u t t o n - S m i t h , B . , R o s e n b e r g , B . & L a n d y , F . ( 1 9 6 8 ) . The i n t e r a c t i o n o f f a t h e r a b s e n c e a n d s i b l i n g p r e s e n c e on c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t i e s . C h i l d D e v e l o p m e n t , 3 9 , 1 2 1 3 - 1 2 2 1 . S t i v e n s , M. ( 1 9 7 8 ) . Women a n d t h e i r k i n . In C a p l a n & B u j r a ( E d s . ) , Women u n i t e d , women d i v i d e d ( p p . 1 5 7 - 1 8 4 ) . L o n d o n : T a v i s t o c k . S t u r d i v a n t , S . ( 1 9 8 0 ) . T h e r a p y w i t h women. New Y o r k : S p r i n g e r . T o m a n , W. ( 1 9 6 9 ) . F a m i l y c o n s t e l l a t i o n . New Y o r k : S p r i n g e r . T r o l l , L . ( 1 9 7 1 ) . T h e f a m i l y o f l a t e r l i f e . J o u r n a l o f  M a r r i a g e a n d t h e F a m i l y , 3 3 , 2 6 3 - 2 9 0 . T r o l l , L . & S m i t h , J . ( 1 9 7 6 ) . A t t a c h m e n t t h r o u g h t h e l i f e s p a n . Human D e v e l o p m e n t , 19 , 1 5 6 - 1 7 0 . W e i s s , R. ( 1 9 7 3 ) . L o n e l i n e s s : The e x p e r i e n c e o f e m o t i o n a l  a n d s o c i a l i s o l a t i o n . C a m b r i d g e , M a s s . : M . I . T . P r e s s . W e n g r e n i u k , K. ( 1 9 7 1 ) . F r i e n d s h i p e x p e c t a n c i e s i n s m a l l g r o u p s . U n p u b l i s h e d m a n u s c r i p t . U n i v e r s i t y o f W i n d s o r . 97 W o o l s e y , L . ( 1 9 8 4 ) . S o c i a l s c i e n c e s a n d h u m a n i t i e s r e s e a r c h  c o u n c i l a p p l i c a t i o n . A p p e n d i x A : R e v i s e d S o c i a l S u p p o r t Q u e s t i o n n a i r e SOCIAL SUPPORT QUESTIONNAIRE Social support networks have been shown to be very important to people's self-esteem and general happiness. We are presently doing research investigating some important aspects of women's support systems. If you would like to know more about your support system please complete the following questionnaire. It should take approximately 15 - 20 minutes. The information you give will be kept completely confidential and used for research purposes only. Participation is voluntary and you are free to withdraw at any time or to refuse to answer any questions. It will be assumed that if this questionnaire is completed, consent has been given. Your involvement or non-involvement will in no way affect any aspect of your academic standing. INSTRUCTIONS The following questions ask about people in your environment who provide you with help or support. Each question has two parts. For the first part, please indicate who you rely on most for help or support in the manner described. You do not need to list them in order of importance —just give the person's initials, their relationship to you, and their sex (see example). Do not list more than six persons per question, and try not to spend too long on each question — list those people who come to your mind first. For the second part, rate how satisfied you are with the overall support you have, in each situation using the following scale. I 2 3 4 5 6 Very Dissatisfied Quite Slightly Slightly Quite Very Satisfied Not enough support Dissatisfied Dissatisfied Satisfied Satisfied Enough support If you feel you have no support for a question, check the words " No one", but still rate your level of satisfaction. Please answer all questions as best you can. EXAMPLE Ex) Who do you know whom you can trust with information that could get you in trouble ? No one I) 6.L. fY.en^- V-. 4) L . S - V How satisfied_ 2) T . s. maw • F 5) — 3) ru.R - f r , * r ^ - m. 6) — Wum can you really court on to be deparfabk- Wen you need help? NDore I) 4) Howsatisfied? 2) 5) 3) 6) Wtomdu you fed would help you if you were rmried and had just separated from your spouse. No one I) 4) How satisfied? 2) 5) 3) 6) Wth Wxm can you totally be yourself: _ Noone I) 4) Huw satisfied? 2) 5) 3) 6) Wx> hdps you feel tnat you truly love surredii^  positive to ca tribute toothers? No one I) 4) How satisfied? 2) 5) 3) 6) Wum can you count on to listen openly and uncritically to your irremost fedirgv No one I) 4) How satisfied? 2) . 5) 3) 6) Wxm could you really count on to help you out if you nad jus been fired from your job or been expelled from school.' Noone I) 4) Hbw satisfied? 2) 5) 3) 6) Wo accepts you totally, inducing both your worst airl your best poire. Noone I) 4) How satisfied? 2) 5) 3) 6) Wiom do you feel truly loves you deeply.' Noone I) 4) How satisfied? 2) 5) 3) - ' 6) Wxm can you really court on tu support you in major derisions you make: Nuone I) 4) How satisfied.' ~ 2) 5) 3) 6) 101 Please lis your siblings bdow in order from oldest to youngest. Include yourself. (Note. Names are not necessary, instead number the oldest - I and give his/her sex and age.) Sibling Sex Age Oldest 1. 2 3. Youngest On the basis of your responses, I would like to contact a number of students to give more detailed information. This would take less than an hour of your time, to be arranged at your convenience at some time during the next 3 months. If you are interested or just have questions or comments about this research, please give your first name and a telephone number where you can be reached. First name: Telephone: THANK YOU FOR YOUR PARTICIPATION. A p p e n d i x B : S i s t e r s P a c k a g e CONSENT FORM 103 Title of Project: Sisters: An Unique and Important Relationship Principal Investigator: Rita I. Knodel I am presently studying the relationsnip between sisters. I will be asking you to describe your relationship in detail by using a two-part questionnaire and an interview. The questionnaire will take approximately 10 - 15 minutes; the interview, approximately 20 - 30 min. totaling 30 - 45 minutes, to be arranged at your convenience. Each interview will be tape-recorded. The tape will allow me to study your comments and to extract a summary of the experiences you describe. Once this is completed the tape will be erased. All information you provide me, in either the question-naire or the interview will be strictly confidential and will be used anonymously for research purposes. Your participation is voluntary. You have the right to refuse to answer any questions and to withdraw from the study at any time without prejudice. As well, participation or non-participation will in no way affect your academic standing. In light of these facts, I consent to be a participant in this study Participant: Researcher: Date: 104 SiSTERS QUESTIONNAIRE A. Please provide UK followii^ inforrraiioo about yourself, your sister (tie sister to whom you fed closest or by wnom you are most supported), and your other family members by fillip in Die blanks or by circliiig the most appropriate answer. L Your first name: Ms iul Statin-Age: Children. No Yes 2 Your sister's first name:. Marital Status: Birthdate: (Ages: Birthdate: Age: Children: No Yes (Ages: 3. Do you and you-sister, both live iii B.C.- Yes No 4. Oo you both presently live in me same city: Yes No 5. Do you both presently live in tne same housenoid; Yes No same houseJiold:' If No, how long since you liave lived in the 6. How often do you and your inter see one anonw in person More than Once a More man Once a onceaday day once a week 7. How often do you talk on the phone: More than Once a More man onceadav day once a week & How often do you write to one another r Once a Several times week amonth week Once a More titan onceamonth More than onceamonth Once a month Once a month A few times a year A few times a year Less than a few times a year Less than a few times a year About once a month Several times On special Never a year occasions write 9. in general, which of the following is your mos important reason for keeping in touch with your sister; You fed obligated You need her help Sne needs your hdp You simply enjoy to keep in touch in some way in some way keeping in touch Other: ; , , 10. What b your father's occupation'. What is your mother's occupation.' How would you characterize your family's socio-economic level: Lower ~ Middle Upper 11. In general, iiow "dose-knit" do you consider your family to be, on the scale bdow: Not dose at ail Somewhat dose Fairly Close Quite Oose Extremely Close To what extent do you fed tins affects your relationship with your sister: Not at all Sightly Somewhat Quite a lot Very much XL What ethnic designation would you give yourself? To wiiat extent do you fed this affects your relationship with your sister? Not at all Sightly Somewnat Quite a lot Very mica B. On the next two pages you are to rate a dose and supportive female friend and your sister (the one mentioned in Part A) on a series of statements. Using the following scale, please write the correspondiif number in the space provided. Never or Sometimes Often Usually Always or Almost Never (20-401 of the time) (40 - 60 Zof the time) (60 - 8$ of the time) Almost always Please read CJCJI statement and decide how tJie statement fits your present rdationship with your sister (your most supportive sister) according to the scale snown below. Never Sometimes Often Usually Always I 2 3 4 5 1. Slows praise and appreciation for my accomplishments. 2 Enjoy spending a lot of timei together 3. Concerned with my welfare and helps promote it 4. Has abilities and skills and uses them well 5. Considerate of my feelings. 6. I fed. free to express my most inner private feelings. 7. Stands up and defends wnat she believes ia 8. Could turn to her for support in time of need 9. Possesses similar personality traits and characteristics. K). Enhances my fed i i ^ of sdf-wortn il. Could reveal to her my most secret hopes and ambitions 12 Is hersdf — does not try to impress me 13. We have similar attitudes and opinions. 14. Has seriousness of purpose and acnieves ner goals. 15. Is respectful of me — does not try to "use"me 16. Thinks my ideas are important. 17. Could disclose to her things I have done dot 1 am ashamed of. 18. Does not let differences of opinion to come between us. 19. Keeps up my courage. 20. I fed free to be my own genuine sdf 2. Does things for me willingly, and doesn't expect anytning in return 22 Feds that our rdationship is very importairt 23. Recognizes her responsibility as a member of our society 24. Could talk to this person about intimate family problems. 25. We could spend an enjoyable social evening together 26. Stands by me through anything. 27. I fed secure and rdaxed witn this persoa 28. Acknowledges my right to my convictions even if she disagrees with me. 29. We have many common interests. 30. Advice given honestly when asked for 31. Has strength and endurance of character 32. I can drop all defences and be mysdf 33. Feds that I am an important, worthwhile person 34.' Could talk to this person about my personal problems, 35. More interested in me as a person than what I can do for her Please read each statement and decide how the statement fits your present relationship with a close and supportive female friend, according to the scale shown below. Never Sometimes Often Usually Always 2 3 4 5 1. Slows praise and appreciation for my accomplishments. Z Enjoy spending a lot of time together 3. Concerned with my welfare and helps promote it 4. Has abilities and skills and uses them well 5. Considerate of my feelings. 6. I fed. free to express my most inner private fedings. 7. Stands up and defends wtut she bdieves ia 8. Could turn to her for support in time of need 9. Possesses similar personality traits and characteristics. 10. Enhances my fedings of sdf-wortn 11. Could reveal to her my most secret hopes and ambitions 12 Is herself — does not try to impress me, 13. We have similar attitudes and opinions. 14. Has seriousness of purpose and acnieves iter goals. 15. Is respectful of me does not try to "use"me , 16. Thinks my ideas are important. 17. Could disdose to her things I have done tiiat I am ashamed of 18. Does not let differences of opinion to come between us. 19. Keeps up my courage. 20. I fed free to be my own genuine sdf 2. Does things for me willingly, and doesn't expect anytning in return 22. Feds that our rdationship is very importain 23. Recognizes her responsibility as a member of our society 24. Could talk to this person about intimate family problems. 25. We could spend an enjoyable social evening together 26. Stands by me through anything. 27. I fed secure and rdaxed witn this persoa 28. Acknowledges my right to my convictions even if she disagrees with me. 29. We have many common interests. 30. Advice given honestly when asked for 31. Has strength and endurance of character 32. I can drop all defences and be mysdf. 33. Feds that I am an important, worthwhile person 34. Could talk to this person about my personal problems. 35. More interested in me as a person than what I can do for her A p p e n d i x C : A n n o t a t e d B i b l i o g r a p h y 108 ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY P s y c h o l o g i c a l a n d S o c i o l o g i c a l R e v i e w s o f S i b l i n g R e s e a r c h L a m b , M. & S u t t o n - S m i t h , B . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . S i b l i n g R e l a t i o n s h i p s . H i l l s d a l e , New Y o r k : E r l b a u m . T h i s book c o n t a i n s a number o f v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g c h a p t e r s by v a r i o u s r e s e a r c h e r s on s i b l i n g s a t d i f f e r e n t s t a g e s o f l i f e . D u n n , J . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . S i s t e r s a n d B r o t h e r s : The d e v e l o p i n g c h i l d . C a m b r i d g e , M a . : H a r v a r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . A r e c e n t l o o k a t t h e i n f l u e n c e s i b l i n g s h a v e on one a n o t h e r b e g i n n i n g i n c h i l d h o o d a n d c o n t i n u i n g on t h r o u g h o u t l i f e . B a n k , S . . & K a h n , M. ( 1 9 8 2 ) . T h e S i b l i n g B o n d . New Y o r k : B a s i c B o o k s . Two c l i n i c i a n s d i s c u s s t h e e m o t i o n a l r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i b l i n g s a n d t h e i n f l u e n c e s i b l i n g s h a v e on one a n o t h e r ' s d e v e l o p m e n t . P o p u l a r P s y c h o l o g y on S i s t e r s F i s c h e l , E . ( 1 9 7 9 ) . S i s t e r s : L o v e a n d r i v a l r y i n s i d e t h e  f a m i l y a n d b e y o n d . New Y o r k : Morrow & C o . T h i s i s an i n t e r e s t i n g a n d w e l l w r i t t e n c o l l e c t i o n o f p e r c e p t i o n s a n d e x p e r i e n c e s by s i s t e r s — i n c l u d i n g w e l l known women s u c h a s : M a r g a r e t M e a d , C a r l y S i m o n , S i m o n e de B e a u v o i r , e t c . M c C o n v i l l e , B . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . S i s t e r s : L o v e a n d c o n f l i c t w i t h i n t h e  l i f e l o n g b o n d . L o n d o n : Pan B o o k s . B a s e d on i n t e r v i e w s w i t h s i s t e r s , N c C o n v i l l e o r g a n i z e s common t h e m e s b e t w e e n s i s t e r s a l o n g w i t h i n t e r e s t i n g s t o r i e s a n d c o m m e n t s . 1 09 M c N a r o n , T . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . The S i s t e r B o n d : A f e m i n i s t v i e w o f a  t i m e l e s s c o n n e c t i o n . New Y o r k : Pergamon P r e s s . An e x p l o r a t i o n o f s i s t e r s a s p o r t r a y e d i n o u r l i t e r a t u r e by S i m o n e de B e a u v o i r , B r o n t e s i s t e r s , e t c . G r e a t F i c t i o n by a n d a b o u t Women w i t h S i s t e r s A l c o t t , L o u i s a M a y . ( 1 9 5 5 ) . L i t t l e Women. New Y o r k : C r o w e l l C o . A u s t i n , J a n e . ( 1 9 3 3 ) . T h r e e S i s t e r s . ( F i r s t V o l u m e , J a n e A u s t i n ' s E a r l y W o r k s , C l a r e n d e n P r e s s , O x f o r d . B e l l , Q u e n t i n . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . V i r g i n i a W o o l f H o g a r t h P r e s s , L o n d o n . B l o c h , A l i c e . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . L i f e t i m e G u a r a n t e e . P a r s e p h o n e P r e s s , M a s s a c h u s e t t s . M e a d , M a r g a r e t . ( 1 9 7 3 ) . B l a c k b e r r y W i n t e r . A n g u s & R o b e r t s o n , L o n d o n . M o , T . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . S o u r S w e e t . D e u t s c h , L o n d o n . P o e t r y R i c h , A d r i e n n e . ( 1 9 7 8 ) . The Dream o f a Common L a n g u a g e . N o r t o n & C o m p a n y , New Y o r k . S c h u t z , S . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . My S i s t e r , My F r i e n d . B l u e M o u n t a i n P r e s s , C o l a r a d o . 1 10 Appendix D: F a c i l i t a t i n g F a c t o r s and t h e i r C a t e g o r i z a t i o n 111 F A C I L I T A T I N G FACTORS AND THEIR CATEGORIZATION F A C I L I T A T I N G FACTOR F SUBORDINATE CATEGORY SUPERORDINATE CATEGORY M a t u r i t y i n a g e / e x p e r i e n c e 9 M a t u r i t y R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t y H o s p i t a l i z a t i o n o r s e r i o u s 9 D i f f i c u l t i l l n e s s o f s i s t e r o r s e l f e x p e r i e n c e L i f e E v e n t I n t i m a t e c o m m u n i c a t i o n 9 C o m m u n i c a t i o n R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t y . B e i n g c l o s e i n a g e 8 S i b l i n g s t a t u s E x t e r n a l F a c t o r e f f e c t E m o t i o n a l c r i s i s o r d i f f i c u l t y S i s t e r ' s p e r s o n a l i t y 8 D i f f i c u l t e x p e r i e n c e 8 S i s t e r ' s q u a l i t i e s L i f e E v e n t R e l a t i o n s h i p q u a l i t y B e i n g o f t h e same sex 8 S i b l i n g s t a t u s E x t e r n a l F a c t o r e f f e c t P a r e n t a l m a r r i a g e p r o b l e m s , d i v o r c e o r s e p a r a t i o n C o m p a t i b l e p e r s o n a l i t i e s 7 F a m i l y p r o b l e m E x t e r n a l F a c t o r 6 R e l a t i o n s h i p R e l a t i o n s h i p C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s Q u a l i t i e s S p e c i a l v i s i t s d u r i n g p e r i o d 6 o f s e p a r a t i o n R e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h 6 h u s b a n d / b o y f r i e n d t e r m i n a t e d S h a r i n g a b e d r o o m , p o s s e s s i o n s a s c h i l d r e n G e n e r a l s t r e s s f u l t i m e s 6 6 S e p a r a t i o n D i f f i c u l t e x p e r i e n c e Home e n v i ronment D i f f i c u l t e x p e r i e n c e L i f e E v e n t L i f e E v e n t E x t e r n a l F a c t o r L i f e E v e n t I n c r e a s e d r e c o g n i t i o n of 5 s i m i l a r i t i e s Death i n the f a m i l y . 5 Making d i f f i c u l t l i f e 5 d e c i s i o n s F a m i l y i n t e r a c t i o n - Sunday 5 d i n n e r s or f a m i l y v a c t i o n s P r e p a r i n g f o r and s h a r i n g a 5 s p e c i a l event ( i e . , m a r r i a g e ) S i m i l a r i t i e s - v a l u e s , 5 p e r c e p t i o n s , i n t e r e s t s I n c r e a s e d communication due 5 t o s e p a r a t i o n L i v i n g near one another 4 a f t e r a p e r i o d of s e p a r a t i o n D i f f i c u l t r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h 4 a p a r e n t P a r e n t a l i l l n e s s - p h y s i c a l 4 or p s y c h o l o g i c a l P a r e n t a l emphasis on 4 p o s i t i v e s i b r e l a t i o n s h i p T r a v e l l i n g t o g e t h e r or 4 s h a r i n g an a d v e n t u r e A b u s i v e and/or a l c h o l i c 4 p a r e n t B e i n g grouped t o g e t h e r - 3 "the g i r l s " B e i n g a b l e t o r e s o l v e 3 c o n f l i c t 1 1 2 M a t u r i t y R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t y D i f f i c u l t L i f e Event e x p e r i e n c e D i f f i c u l t L i f e Event e x p e r i e n c e P a r e n t a l v a l u e s E x t e r n a l F a c t o r & a c t i o n s P o s i t i v e L i f e Event e x p e r i e n c e R e l a t i o n s h i p R e l a t i o n s h i p c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s Q u a l i t i e s S e p a r a t i o n S e p a r a t i o n F a m i l y problem F a m i l y problem P a r e n t a l v a l u e s & a c t i o n s P o s i t i v e e x p e r i e n c e F a m i l y problem S i b l i n g s t a t u s ef f e c t s Communication L i f e Event L i f e Event E x t e r n a l F a c t o r E x t e r n a l F a c t o r E x t e r n a l F a c t o r L i f e Event E x t e r n a l F a c t o r E x t e r n a l F a c t o r R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t y A p p r e c i a t i n g each o t h e r more 3 a f t e r p e r i o d of s e p a r a t i o n S h a r i n g memories of 3 s p e c i a l / f u n times P a r e n t s model p o s i t i v e 3 m a r i t a l and/or s i b l i n g bonds Spending time t o g e t h e r - 2 f e e l i n g s p e c i a l bonds B e i n g a b l e t o e x p r e s s 2 af f e e t i o n Growing up on a farm 2 Moving f r e q u e n t l y d u r i n g 2 c h i l d h o o d Time and space a p a r t 2 1 13 Separat i o n P o s i t i v e exper i e n c e P a r e n t a l v a l u e s & a c t i o n s P o s i t i v e e x p e r i e n c e Communicat i o n Home e n v i ronment Home e n v i ronment Matur i t y L i f e Event L i f e Event E x t e r n a l F a c t o r L i f e Event R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t y E x t e r n a l F a c t o r E x t e r n a l F a c t o r R e l a t i o n s h i p Q u a l i t y 

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