First off, no one is perfect. Far from it. I mention this because if you are one of those people who have a sibling, odds are, to go along with the good times and fond memories there will always be those, “this one time my sibling did this to me…” Sometimes this is caused purely by accident or circumstance, sometimes it’s on purpose.
I love my sister to death, but I am very happy that I don’t live in the same state as her. We get along, but when we have a difference of opinions, that’s it. My wife has a brother, and I know that her childhood was made more difficult because of her brother’s will, temperament, and way of being. I could talk about my mother and her brother, my dad and his brother, my father-in law and his 7 siblings, but in essence, there are good memories and memories best left forgotten. My twins are 3.5. They spend time apart and do just fine, but they thrive when they’re together. They also can get to each other.
Think about this- what is a sibling, really? In most families, if you have a sibling, you’re spending most of your time with this person (or with multiple siblings, these people) every single day. You have meals together. You go to the same schools together. You go on vacations together. You may share possessions, like clothes or toys. You celebrate holidays and birthdays together. When you get older, you usually stay in touch with these people. You see them at times; get together for holidays, and your kids and their kids will interact. Your siblings will be some of the closest people in your life, whether you like it or not.
Now, there are many inadvertent benefits to having a sibling, as observed in these studies:
However, if you are going have someone in your life that will be with you for most of the haul, isn’t it better to have a good relationship with them? As I mentioned, my twins are almost 4. They were separated for 13 minutes. They usually spend every moment together. They have their individual traits and temperaments, but man, when they’re together, they’re a determined, well-oiled machine. Nothing will get in their way. My wife and I have always advocated that they be good and kind to each other. It’s working. I don’t want to get all how my kids can conquer the world, but even at their age, they are doing a damn good job at it. They’re good siblings to each other.
They keep each other healthy. They challenge each other. They cooperate. They learn from one another. They love each other. And while this is all great, it all started from teaching them the importance of love. What it means to be “good” to each other. They’re good siblings for each other. That’s all I ever wanted.
If you have a sister or brother, be a good sibling. Be there for them. It’ll make them (and you) better people.