When Elder Care Brings Back Sibling Tensions

Siblings clash as they respond to parents' aging

Matt Eich for TIME

Linda Groeber, 67, downplayed her problems when a daughter visited her in Baltimore

When my mother's health was failing, I was the "bad" sister who lived far away and wasn't involved. My sister helped my parents. She never asked me to do anything, and I didn't volunteer. I was widowed, raising kids and working, but that wasn't really why I kept to weekly calls and short, infrequent visits. I was stuck in my adolescent role as the aloof achiever, defending myself from my judgmental mother and other family craziness. As always, I deflected my sister's digs about my not being around more — and I didn't hear her rising desperation. It wasn't until my...