If you grew up being beaten by an older brother, you are not alone. Big brothers really are the biggest bullies, particularly for those in larger families. A study has found when it comes to sibling name-calling, teasing and other types of behaviour, older boys tend to be the perpetrators. Junior girls are more likely to be targeted by their siblings, especially if they are the babies of the family. Psychologists followed 6,838 British siblings up until the age 12. They found firstborn children and older brothers are the most likely to pick on others in their family. Dr Dieter Wolke, who led the study, said, “A firstborn child gets 100 per cent of parents’ attention, toys and playtime but that gets cut to 50 per cent when a second child is born, and it falls even further when more children come along. So siblings turn into bullies because they are competing for attention or they are frustrated someone else is taking their parents away. Teasing and name-calling may also be an attempt to get more focus from parents and more treats, like toys and snacks, by casting their siblings in a bad light so the parents like them less.” Sibling bullying is usually psychological, most often involving name-calling. But hitting, kicking or pushing is also a popular tactic, along with making fun of other family members. Boys are the biggest bullies, being 69 per cent more likely to pick on their siblings, and older children are more than twice as likely to be bullies too. It made no difference to sibling bullying levels if children came from a higher class or had a single parent. But children with higher self-esteem were less likely to be bullied for they had the skills of protecting themselves properly.