Literature on the siblings of disabled children has been dominated by western psychosocial theories that focus on stresses associated with being a ‘young carer’ or on children as active agents realising their ‘rights’ rather than as the victims of familial expectations. This article presents the findings of a visual ethnographic study exploring the lives of nine children living with an autistic sibling in South Korea (hereafter Korea). Despite personal challenges and family tensions, experiences of ‘being’ a sibling were strongly influenced by Confucian familist cultural values in which sacrifice plays a central role in achieving honourable and harmonious family life.