There have been numerous times over the years, when I have actually felt shortchanged (for lack of a better word) for not having any brothers and sisters of my own. Sure, I had friends, but it’s not the same as a sibling.
Selfishly, perhaps I wanted and needed someone to not only share my hard times while I was growing up, but also to celebrate and rejoice in the wonders of LIFE as I’ve come to know them. I have always felt alone in that regard. Even though my husband and I are extremely close and share more than I ever thought possible, he only “knows” of my past, he did not experience it himself or know me during those formative years. He’s not someone with a common history.
But what I suddenly realized not too long ago, while stepping back and observing friends and family, is that sometimes having a sibling(s) is difficult itself… and often produces its own aloneness. As we get older, there are times where brothers and sisters don’t view life and the world in the same way. The closeness that was present during youth is now divided by ever present differences in lifestyles, physical distances, and personal agendas with negative choices. The common history of innocence during childhood is often tarnished with individual anger, resentments, and egos in adulthood.
From an outsider’s view, mine in this case, it is baffling. I would have done anything for a brother or sister when I was growing up; I wish I was so blessed now. Should not every effort be made to heal any rift between siblings, even if it’s minor? Or, actual candid discussion, with gut level honesty, as to why an event or words played out between siblings the way it did would be a good place to start. To think or believe that issues go away and are forgotten down the road and time heals all wounds, as the cliche goes, is ridiculous to me.
It is the same as putting a band-aid on a cut that really needs ten stitches. It will indeed heal, after a time, but the scar will be ever present as a constant nagging reminder, and the duration of healing time will be lengthy. It also appears counterproductive not to discuss things immediately, and come to common agreement, as experience shows that negative behavior surfaces repeatedly unless clear feelings of disapproval are made known immediately.
Those expressions and sentiments e.g. You are too sensitive, Just forget about it, and You took it the wrong way, are merely avoidance statements. It’s much more difficult to address something head on and clear the air, but ultimately more positive for both involved parties. Issues need resolution and closure. And, there should never be any choosing sides between siblings if you are a parent or another sibling. There is no easy way to have a family, but it beats having none. But…if a sibling has consistantly caused you and your family nothing but heartache…perhaps, a “time out” is in order!