My mother has been giving my sister the silent treatment for the past three days, and it is affecting my mood (I can't focus on my studies), as I don't like seeing my family in conflict. I always felt that I'm a highly sensitive person and other people's negative emotion easily affect me.
I live in Malaysia. I'm 26, working on my Ph.D. away from home, and my sister is 23, living with my parents and brother while working full time.
My mother is angry because she thinks that my sister is not spending enough time with the family and that she doesn't care about them.
From what I observed my sister spends less than 15 minutes per day interacting with the family as she works from 9 AM to 7 PM, 6 days per week (sometimes Sundays as well) and then often goes out to have dinner with friends. She mostly comes home only to shower and sleep.
My parents similarly work long hours (10 to 7, Monday to Saturday), and my mother thinks that my sister is not willing to sacrifice some of her time with her friends. My father doesn't show approval nor disapproval, as he usually avoids conflict by not choosing any side. My younger brother is still in school, and I don't think he's bothered too much.
I understand my mother's point of view, however, I also understand that my sister has very little free time, and gets tired very easily. Furthermore, I think my mother is sometimes too controlling.
They are both very stubborn, and I'm not sure if they will get over this anytime soon. My sister's graduation ceremony will take place soon, and if this keeps up I'm afraid that my mother will not attend, making my sister feel sad and unwanted.
I'd like to get them to reconcile. But it doesn't necessarily have to be a total reconciliation: If I can get them to a point where I will be sure this doesn't affect my mother's attendance to my sister's graduation ceremony, I believe I can stop worrying and focus on my studies again.
How can I handle intervening and getting them to reconcile?