Thursday, June 05, 2008

Talk About It: Sibling Love

I've always wanted a sister. It seems like everyone I know {and I do mean nearly all my friends} have sisters. I have one friend who is an only child & one close cousin who does not have a sister {she does have a few step-sisters though}. I guess since I don't have one, I've built up in my mind what I missing. It is something like what you'd find on one of those made for TV movies on the Hallmark channel. I'd imagine us painting each other's toenails, late-night giggle and gab sessions, borrowing each other's clothes, keeping secrets from our parents. As adults I'd figure we'd be bridesmaids in each other's weddings, calling each other for parenting advice, crying on each other's shoulder. We'd be best friends. Um. I guess from people I've asked so far that my lovely little picture usually only happens in the movies! One older woman I asked this Talk About It question just looked puzzled and kept repeating, "I don't know." Another Christian man I asked, quipped a bit harshly, "What siblings?" {He does have siblings.} So, here it is:

Considering your own childhood, what can a parent do {or not do} with their children now to lay a firm foundation for sibling closeness as adults? If you're close with your siblings, then maybe you can say what your parents did right. If you're not, maybe you can discern what might have gone wrong.

Rules: Play nicely. We all have our own opinion, but let's be thoughtful and respectful of one another.


Erin said...

I think most would think that I have a close relationship with my siblings. There are a few things that I think my parents did well that can attribute to our sense of closeness.

#1-Always encouraged us to protect each other.

Even to this day if I got a phone call and one of my siblings said "I need you" I would drop whatever I was doing to come to their aide. And that's what they would do for me as well. We are extremely loyal and I could tell you many instances where this has proved helpful AND has been a huge encouragement in my life.

#2 My parents would actually remind us that we will always have each other.

This was important to me when I was in high school and thought that I didn't need my family. At the time it was extremely annoying to hear but now it is so true. In this life FAMILY IS EVERYTHING! And especially with my girls. They will have each other.

I know that there is more but these are the top two that I can come up with at the moment.

Oh...and I am MUCH closer with my brothers than I am with my sisters. Although I think that when they get a bit older we could have great growing relationships.

Anonymous said...

I have a fantastic relationship with my sister and as a matter of fact if we Don't talk three times a week, we go through a terrible withdrawal. I do have a great relationship with my brother too but I don't HAVE to talk with him every day. I do call my sister in tears, we were in each others weddings, we do drive out after babies are born. We need each other. If three months hits and we haven't a date in the near future of where we will be seeing each other we immediately try to set one up. We did one year go a whole year without seeing each other due to circumstances but I can say our phone bills were higher. So relationships like that really do exist. I can't think of anything my parents did other than what Erin stated, we will always have each other and we will always protect each other. There is a distance between me and my sibs age and miles. Maybe that helps I don't know.
My sister is my Best Friend and I am gauranteed that she will never hurt me, betray me or leave me EVER.
Oh one thing my dad did every morning and still does every morning of his/our lives is he prays for us and prays for our relationships. I suppose you can attribute our closeness to that. God. Sorry to babble, this was a great question.

Peaceful Chaoz said...

I may think of more later but one thing that sticks out in my mind was just the all around closeness of our family. I'm not sure my parents did or didn't do anything to focus on the sibling part but what they did do was just maintain that family comes first and we will always be there for each other. and of course we fight and bicker, sometimes more than others but we love each other and we all know that we are loved!!!

Hollie said...

I kind of chuckled as I read your image of what sisters would be like growing up. My sister and I, though we had our good times, fought a lot! Even so much so that our parents put us out in the front yard once with some tennis rackets and told us to have it out! *We didn't but to this day joke about it* However, if anyone else messed with her it was on, and she felt the same way towards me.
As we grew up and time passed we have grown close. She was in the delivery room with me when I had Kylee, she was my maid of honor in my wedding, and I was the first one she told (besides her hubby) that she was pregnant, and was also the maid of honor in her wedding.
I think we took the time we had growing up for granted because no there is a lot of distance between us... she lives in Florida and I live in Illinois.
Looking back there really wasn't anything, other then what has been stated, that my parents did to make our relationship what it was and is today.

Anna said...

It's funny. My sisters and I never had that giggling, best friends, painting each other's nails type bond when we were growing up. We do now and I'm not sure why. My older sister just said to me last week "I've spent more time with you in the past few months than we have our whole lives" (quality time that is, obviously we lived together). I can't say that my parents did anything wrong. Sundays were strictly family days, Fridays we had movie nights. Honestly, I think I was just a snot cuz my older sis and my younger sis bonded long before I meshed into the group. Yep, I'm just a snot...or I was.

Stephanie said...

What did my parents do to help my sister and I have the relationship we do?!? No clue. But whatever it was, it worked. We have always been close! Borrowing each other's clothes, having pedicure parties, all the fun girlie stuff. Yes, your imagination sister relationship CAN exist. That is not to say that we didn't have our occasional squabble, but we were, and still are, truly each other's best friend! We were each maids of honor in the other's wedding.
But to answer your question for my parents' input or influence in helping that type of relationship, no clue. help here. :-)
But my brother and I, not so close. I was still quite protective of him, BUT we are no where near as close as my sister and me!