Aug 24, 2010
Sibling rivalry, words and fights
Whatever happens, we’ll always remain
Brothers and sisters in sunshine and rain
Singing and laughter, enemies and friends,
Secrets shared, but kept away from mum and dad
To strengthen our bond, and make us strong
Nothing else matters, no world outside
We are together in our little world safe and sound
Just brothers and sisters always around
Brother-sister relationships are complex. Love, competition, friendship, and jealousy all overlay each other to create complex emotional reactions to family issues and situations.
How much influence do our childhood relationships with our siblings have on our adult life? Much of our adult emotional and social influence is largely attributed to the sibling relationship. While parents teach us the proper way to behave socially, siblings teach us how to get along with friends and peers. A parent’s responsibility consists of teaching children skills like table manners, respect for authority and acting appropriately in public. A sibling, however, acts more like a mentor in the realm of socialization.
The youngest Almeida of my family, my sister was kicked from heaven two and a half years after I landed from hell. Never knew that she would be the person whom I could turn to in happiness or in distress. Being the oldest child in our family, I was usually the one that had to listen to all the parenting advice before my sister was old enough to take a stand. Although our relationship has been through a lot of ups and downs, now that we both technically belong to the adult group of the family, I consider her to be one of the most caring and smart individuals I know - and irreplaceable in my life.
I catch myself often traveling back in time and remembering with nostalgia those instances when we felt compelled to fight over a toy or food. I smile when I recall those nights when I used to run to my sister’s bedroom as my mother entered her room in order to begin narrating her favorite story. Like most families, our family 'ritual' was to listen to fairytales before going to bed - my mother was always ready to repeat the story of the righteous young man and his successful fight against the misunderstood monster that frightened the inhabitants of an imaginary village. When mom was busy with house work, our dad would be the replacement Story-Teller. His stories always had a lion and a tiger and my sister would switch back to mom’s story – on demand.
Being born and bought up in a cosmopolitan society, we celebrated all festivals including Raksha Bandhan. My sister would tie me a rakhee and in return I would run down to the local grocery shop and buy her a chocolate which would be eventually shared between the two of us.
Although she was two years younger to my batch, she knew all the poems, lessons, and studies that were in my syllabus. The reason being that when mom made me study, hardly anything entered my brain, but my sister on the other hand, used to memorize all that stuff and would prompt me the answers when dad took my revision.
This year Raksha Bandhan falls on August 24.
On a lighter note, this occasion is good for guys at home as it’s a special day to spend with their sisters but when it comes to college, it is one of the worst. The absenteeism ratio for guys in college is highest on this day of the year. Needless to say why.
To wrap it all up, the relationship between brother and sister is like pure nectar and will have the same sweetness as long as the universe is.
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