September 24, 2021

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Summer Reading Contest Winner Week 4: On ‘The Psychology Behind Sibling Rivalry’

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Maggie Liu, 13, from New Providence Middle School in New Providence, N.J., chose a writing prompt from The Learning Network based on the article “The Psychology Behind Sibling Rivalry” and wrote:

My sister is a lefty. I am a righty. We are as opposite as the opposite can be.

I can’t live a day without brushing my hair at least once. She can live with huge hair knots for weeks. My room is always bright with a wrinkle-free bed every morning. Her room is dark with stuffed animals and laundry socks tucked under the sheets. I like to paint in peace. She likes to bang away with her drum set. I eat with my friends quietly in school, but I hear her laughter from the other corner of the cafeteria. We are so opposite that we barely spoke to each other before the pandemic.

In “How Well Do You Get Along With Your Sibling?” Jeremy Engle asks readers, “Has the pandemic made you grow closer to your brothers and sisters?” Yes, my sister and I definitely have grown closer through daily online study and our lunch break together. Sure, we fight a lot more now, sometimes fist to fist, like when I tease her about her hygiene habits and she stomps into my room to mess up my bed. But I like that the author advised siblings to “find moments where everyone can come together.” We enjoy channeling our rivalry to win doubles tennis matches and debate events as a team. We bike around town, make bubbles and play truth-or-dare in our driveway. We share our darkest secrets and fun facts. In fact, if the pandemic hadn’t struck, my sister and I would never have been this close. I realize that a lefty and a righty can sometimes make a whole.

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