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PURPOSE: The study explored challenges experienced by siblings of children with chronic disorders, as expressed by siblings in parent-child dialogues. DESIGN AND METHODS: Seventy-three parent-child dialogues (M duration = 28.6 min) were analyzed using qualitative thematic analysis. The dialogues took place within the SIBS group intervention for siblings and parents of children with chronic disorders. The siblings (aged 8 to 14 years) had brothers and sisters with autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, rare disorders, cerebral palsy, or severe mental health disorders. The data are from session 5 in the SIBS intervention, in which the siblings are to express their wishes about family-related challenges (e.g., desired changes) to their parents. The parents are encouraged to listen, explore, and validate the child's perspective before discussing solutions. RESULTS: Most of the family-oriented challenges the siblings expressed were related to the diagnosis of the brother or sister with a disorder. Four main themes were identified: (1) Family life (e.g., limitations in family activities); (2) The diagnosis (e.g., concerns about the future); (3) Violence; and (4) Important relationships. CONCLUSION: The siblings experienced challenges and difficult emotions in interactional processes in which the diagnosis affected family life and relationships. The study adds a new dimension to the field by identifying siblings' expressed challenges based on parent-child dialogues. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Identified themes can guide how parents should meet and address siblings' needs, how health care providers inform and support parents in doing so, and emphasize the relevance of interventions targeting family-level risk and resilience factors.

Original publication




Journal article


J Pediatr Nurs

Publication Date





91 - 98


Chronic disorders, Parent-child communication, Parents, Qualitative analysis, Siblings