How can you tell if the negative relationship between two siblings 9 years apart is the result of sibling rivalry or of the older sibling sexually physically and verbally abusing the younger sibling?

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There is no surefire way an outsider can tell what has occured between the siblings, outside of asking both of them what the problem is.
Even if there has been abuse, both victim and perpatrator may deny the allegation. If other people truly believe or have evidence that abuse has been going on, keep the siblings separated from each other and get the younger sibling professional counseling as soon as possible, to discover to what extent the abuse has gone.  having been in a similar situation, I would say probably both. where was your mother or parental figure during all these years of rivalry and abuse? From whom did the sibling get the idea and support to abuse you or that they could get away with it? My mom never stood up for me and put me down, favoring this older sister all our lives, thereby encouraging my older sister to behave in the same way toward me. We are grown now and will still never be close. One person can't heal it by themselves. I am not saying blame your parent, just understanding sometimes helps.  this may be the same thing. either way the best intrest of the abused should be in mind while confronting the abuser
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In Custody

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