It Is Great to Have Brothers and Sisters

It Is Great to Have Brothers and Sisters

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Expert Author Susan Leigh
Some people say that being an only child made them feel special. They received lots of attention, had pretty much anything they wanted. But there are some things that money cannot buy and being part of a busy, hectic family is one of those things.
Clearly any situations has its pluses and minuses; one persons great experience is another persons nightmare. So let us have a look at some of the different aspects regarding brothers and sisters.
One of the big problems frequently experienced by younger siblings is hand-me-downs, the second-hand clothes and toys passed down from an older child. This may not matter too much for a baby, it often makes sense to re-use hardly worn baby clothes. But for an older child going to school in dated or slightly worn clothes can be extremely embarrassing.
As they get into their teens some young people enjoy being able to share each other's wardrobes. This can result in having access to lots of different choices. Though this situation can cause disharmony when ownership is disputed or things are returned unwashed, torn or simply disappear. In later life many people look back and appreciate that sharing in this way, by choice or not, was a valuable lesson in learning not to be too precious over ones possessions.
Fighting is another area of concern. If there is a golden child, one who can do no wrong, or has special needs or skills then the other siblings can feel sidelined, as if their development and concerns are of lesser importance. Children have very few resources in these situations. They cannot sit and discuss it like adults, so often they become more devious. They may pick fights, or try to blame their sibling for any problems, accidents or mishaps in the home. Many adults remember fighting and jealousy between their brothers and sisters in their teenage years.
On the plus side though, loyalty is often a major factor. Whilst they may well criticise each other at any opportunity, if someone else picks on their brother or sister they will most often be there, straight away to their defense. The support can mean a great deal and reinforce the quality of their relationship. And often as they get older the relationship between siblings can settle into one of friendship again.
Having siblings of a similar age can be valuable as children reach teenage years. Going out together can be a help, especially if they have similar tastes. There can be the security of having someone there to provide backup or support, someone to talk to, look after them if necessary, travel home with.
Meeting a sibling's friends can be useful in learning how to interact with members of the opposite sex or in becoming comfortable about conversing with people of a different age. It can be important as a way of developing confidence, learning to make conversations, being unfazed by the opposite gender and the things they do or say. And can perhaps even lead to introductions and possible romance.
Many people enjoy having younger siblings. They enjoy taking them out, looking after them, teaching them about life. This is a special time that they can share forging a close bond. Problems can arise if the older child starts to feel resentful, that they are perhaps limited in their free time because they have become the main carer for the young child. Sometimes a willing child can end up becoming a mini-parent and babysitter to their younger brother or sister. Whilst it is important to learn about responsibility and selflessness, it is also important to be able to enjoy their youth.
And in those situations the younger child can start to feel that they are a nuisance, a burden. Their confidence can be affected as they have no options other than to do what they are told. Idolizing an older brother or sister can teach valuable skills for later life but having the opportunity for all children to enjoy a happy childhood experience is an important time.

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