Siblings: The pros and cons

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Since I was born, there have been many people in my life, but few have had an impact on me as much as my sister. She truly understands my school, home, personal, and many other aspects of my life. However, having a sibling can still be challenging, resulting in annoyances that few other situations could compare. My sister would steal my things, threaten to leave me at the park, push me off the swing, kick me off my bed, and many other irritable actions. But even after everything, she would still protect me whenever she saw the need to. 

Growing up, I learned that there were several pros and cons to having a sibling, and I believe everyone should know them.

The Cons

Having siblings can be tiring. Every day there is a new fight, it could be about the shower, who gets what seat, friends, it could be anything. Eventually this can lead everyone involved to tired of the constant bickering and fighting.

Anytime I was mean to my sister,  I would get yelled at. If I didn’t share, I would get yelled at, if my sister out of anything would lead me to, you guessed it, getting yelled at. So after having a sibling for 16 years, I am ready to tell everyone the cons of having one.

Having to share

Some sharing isn’t necessarily a terrible thing, at least not entirely. However, sharing everything with siblings, from video games to clothes to bedrooms, can be extremely difficult. Since I was born, everything was me and my sister’s, never just mine. Hand-me-downs started to become more frequent and sharing toys never stopped. Even now, my sister and I still share a bathroom and all of our hair supplies. 

Jill Mayes, a junior at Leesville Road High School, expressed her dislike of sharing with her brother. “I hate sharing with my brother, he’s always asking me for stuff,” said Mayes. Even after giving them everything (just because mom and dad said so), they still continue to ask for more, and if they hear no, they will run to tell their parents.

It is a fact, that all of us can be hypocritical when it comes to sharing with our brother and/or sister. We can be overly sensitive when they borrow something from us but have quite the opposite reaction when we borrow their stuff from them. Oh, the irony!

Passing the blame

Becca McGaughey, my older sister, and a Leesville alumni said that when there are siblings around, kids tend to get away with a lot less, especially when they are younger than you. Siblings will always tell on each other, no matter what. We can beg and plead for them not to say anything, but we all know that they get more pleasure from seeing us get yelled at than helping us out. I know from personal experience that siblings love to see their brother/sister get in trouble.

“Ever since my sister was born, she would always point the finger at me, so I would get in trouble whether I did something foolish or not,” said McGaughey. Guilty or not guilty, the younger sibling seems to be innocent until proven guilty, and the opposite can be true for the eldest. Funny how that works out!

Never get all of the Attention

Growing up with siblings means parents must share their affection “equally” with all in the family. So if one kid is getting more than the other it’s game over. There will always be a feeling, no matter how old, that we have to compete for the love of our parents. When I was 10 years old my sister started playing basketball, and she received all of the attention from the family since she was becoming a “basketball star.” After I started growing more jealous as the days went on, so I would do anything and everything to get my parent’s attention on me again, even dangerous things.

As a result of this competition, it can become exhausting for everyone involved, resulting in more fights than before leading to groundings and other seemingly “capital” punishment or at least it feels like it.

The Pros

Despite the fact that having a sibling is challenging, most times we can count on them for support. The following are some of the benefits of having a sibling that everyone should be aware of.

A built-in best friend

In spite of the countless fights many have with their siblings, they should always be able to count on each other to be there whenever they most need them. Outside of one’s parents, everyone has known their sibling for longer than anyone else in their life. My sister has always been my best friend. And while best friends may fight, they always return to each other. Becca and I tell each other everything, whether we want to hear it or not.

Most, as a child, were always there to play with, and as a teenager, they are there to be an extra shoulder to lean on. Hopefully, as an adult, they are there to listen to problems and give advice. “My sister is my best friend; she has always been there for me and I know she always will be,” said Ashley Silvis, a junior.

 Having a support system

With a sibling, there will always be someone on your side who will listen to you. For example, talking to them about the endless varieties of high school drama will result in them being able to offer advice that they know will best suit the situation.

“I love being able to offer my siblings advice and being a role model for them to follow,” said Ethan Mercer, a senior. Whenever you need to talk about your parents or any other family members, your sibling will always be there. They are the only people who truly understand what you are talking about and going through. 

In middle school, there were rumors going around about me, so my sister and I talked it through, and in the end, she gave me the best advice I have ever heard. The drama ended up with me crying in the middle of a football game. The first person I called was my sister she came driving down the road faster than the speed of light. That is when I knew that she would always be there for me. 

Siblings can teach important lessons

A sibling can help teach us how important family, love, and relationships are in a way we might not have realized before. As well as teaching us how to look after ourselves, they can also teach us how to look after those around us. In addition to this, having a sibling who is younger can allow you to act as a mentor and gain valuable life skills such as responsibility, communication, compromise, negotiation, compassion, and empathy. 

During my childhood, I had many good times with my older sister, but we also had our share of fights. However, as we got older and matured, we were able to talk more, understand each other better, and as a result become very close friends. As we grow up, we tend to believe that our siblings are as different from us as the sun and the moon, but the more we age the more our differences can become similarities and I wouldn’t change a thing.

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