half sister

Please Stop Telling My Daughter That Her Sibling Is Her “Half-Sister”

One of the greatest joys of motherhood is to see one’s kids bond in a loving relationship. A lot of people like to believe that kids who have only one parent in common can’t be that close. Fortunately, they’re absolutely wrong.


Rachel Sobel went through a stressful divorce and shares custody of her 8-year-old daughter with her ex-husband. She had another girl right after she re-married, and the girls share a loving, deep bond. In a post full of motherly emotions, the Pop Sugar website contributor described how awful it feels when people try to put a biological tag on her babies’ deep relationship.


She’s been okay dealing with the rancid and intrusive attitude people put up after a divorce happens. That’s all about her and her ex-husband. She just won’t sit with anyone who tries to meddle into her children’s relationship with the use of the noun ‘half-sister’.


What I won’t stand for is when someone makes my kids feel like sh*t about any part of this dynamic,” Rachel wrote. “People, both ones we know and ones we don’t, try to qualify my kids’ relationship, and it happens more than you can imagine. We don’t use the term half-sister because these girls are not half anything. They’re whole sisters who love each other with their whole hearts.”

The best kind of sisters

Rachel initially thought there’d be some sort of bridge between the girls, seeing as the first is eight years older than the second. She later realized she was worrying for nothing.


A strong bond developed between them the first day they saw each other, and they’ve been so close ever since. Rachel feels that it’s wrong to address her kids as half-sisters. They may both grow up with the notion and mentality that they’re not completely sisters.


The older girl showers her baby sister with so much love and care, that it’s hard to believe she’s only 8. Why would anyone want to classify such a sweet relationship as ‘half’?


They are the best kind of sisters. The older one is the protector and the little one is her shadow. They are madly in love and I’m equally in love with them and their relationship.

However, there are people out there who need to remind my older child that this baby is her ‘half-sister’. While the term may be scientifically accurate, it couldn’t be more of a misrepresentation of their bond. It feels dismissive.”

The eldest finds the term “half-sister” deeply upsetting

Every time the term rolls off somebody’s tongue as casually as if they’re placing their morning coffee order, my older daughter gets upset,” Rachel wrote. The poor girl wonders why anybody would describe her sister as ‘half’. The more people say it, the more confused she gets.

The little girl tries to understand if there is a different way she should feel about her supposedly half-baby-sister. Rachel says it’s such an infuriating term to her. People really shouldn’t try so hard to define a relationship for the little girls.


“They’re whole sisters who love each other with their whole hearts. They play, bicker, and show affection like sisters. Sure they don’t have the same father, but that has zero bearing on their bond.

The fact was also out of their control. They took to the role of sisters so naturally and lovingly, so why can’t everyone else be accepting and follow suit?”

My girls are sisters. Period.

Rachel insists that it’s not easy for moms who have similar families like hers. People like to make it look as if there’s something awfully different about them. It’s not easy having to always be on her guard.


She has to put in extra efforts to make sure the love never stops flowing between her kids. It would be a lot easier on the girls if everyone just accepts that they are sisters, no prefixes attached.


Mothers like me have to work hard every day to facilitate healthy, strong relationships within their families,” Rachel wrote. “So when others undermine that, they’re belittling the circumstances under which my kids came into this world.

So please, think twice before you say something about someone else’s dynamic because at the end of the day we’re a regular family – just like you.”

Keep Reading: Why Your Older Sister Is One of the Most Important People in Your Life


  1. “‘Please stop telling my daughter that her sibling is her ’half-sister’.” Pop Sugar. Rachel Sobel. January 17, 2019.
Sarah Biren
Freelance Writer
Sarah is a baker, cook, author, and blogger living in Toronto. She believes that food is the best method of healing and a classic way of bringing people together. In her spare time, Sarah does yoga, reads cookbooks, writes stories, and finds ways to make any type of food in her blender.