Long before I knew time, conflicts with my relatives and family existed. It was, I think, handed down from generations that were too proud and unforgiving. Today, having witnessed a very stunning confrontation between my two aunts, I tried to recollect the same instances in the past as far as my memory can serve me; the same shallow reasons, the same immaturity. To think, they were already in their 60’s. The pain and the grudge were passed on to their children, making the younger generation hate each other again.
The cycle won’t break and I wonder, maybe they are happy of what’s been happening; are these, for them, stress busters or something? I can only laugh at the idea of while they are raising their voices and fight one another like children lowers their blood pressure. Yes, it’s true that if you let your suppressed feelings go, it will make you feel better and its healthy. But, the truth of the matter is, while you are punching words at your own brother or sister, you are deliberately hurting them in the process. You are creating a much bigger problem. Wounds can heal, but the words that pierced like a knife will be forever remembered. Same way that I don’t believe in the saying, “Forgive and forget”. I might just love the 5SOS song “Amnesia” if it can be done in any situation. 🙂
The experience helped me deal with my own brothers and sister. In my very first personal blog about family, I wrote about my relationship with my younger sister. As an elder sibling, I tend to analyze what goes around my sister’s brainy brain, why we always have conflicting views and opinions and eventually fight over nonsense things. I think I already figured some of them because we fight so rarely now, unlike before; a little friction with little words always generates really large fires that sometimes I would really want to punch her in the face (I’ve never done that, but I think I would love to haha!).
The realizations came when I saw my two aunts fighting. When me and my little sister grows old, I don’t want us to be like my two aunts. Having said that, I just would like to point out some things that siblings fell prey to and fight over. I may or may not have experienced some of these reasons, but I am preparing myself to overcome when the situation sits.
Here are 3 obvious reasons why I think siblings fight and how to overcome them:
1.) Favoritism by parents – I only have a daughter and she has all my attention. I cannot relate to this as a parent, but as a daughter, I think I can manage a few thoughts. I am second from the eldest; I have an older brother that is only a year ahead of me. I remember, way back as a freshman in college, we were required to speak one on one with the University Guidance Counselor. The first question she asked me straight-faced was, “Do you oftentimes feel insecure?” I cannot think of a clear answer so I just smiled and asked her back,”Why?”. She told me about the psychology of a second child, always the second best, always in the shadow of the eldest. Much more that my age gap with my brother is only a little more than a year, she said that the it’s possible that while we were still babies, I might not have gotten the same special attention as the eldest offspring received. True enough, I was raised with a nanny.
The possibility of insecurities in children that can sprung from favoritism of parents is eminent but can be mended. In my case, I was not as insecure as can be perceived from a child that lacked attention because I always think of beautiful things; as I am a woman of all sorts, I always do a lot of diverting fruitful activities. I don’t mind being always the second best, it is good enough for me already. The bottom line is, I have always loved my older brother; no reason to feel hate or anything.
But, in some families, favoritism makes one good reason siblings fight.
2.) Sibling Rivalry – We are four children in the family and this problem can come up any time. I personally don’t like the idea of sibling rivalry; it’s about jealousy, competition, and animosity between brothers and sisters. It’s not a healthy competition. Often times, it is the parents that are hurt in the end. From my personal experience, I cannot cite a concrete example of a sibling rivalry in our family. From my own point of view, I don’t remember being jealous or being competitive with my other siblings. The secret lies in happy thoughts. Whatever my brothers and sister achieve, I was always happy for them; no sibling rivalry.
3.) Inheritance – Ah, this is one thing I can not relate first hand. Just knew a lot of family problems that rooted from it. I remember this very touching Filipino movie entitled “Tanging Yaman“. It is a story of a very broken family; full of hatred and jealousy of siblings to the point of arguing and scrambling over to inherit the properties of their parents. This problem exists in most families in all races, except for an only child of course. That is the saddest thing; sacrificing relationships over material things.
I just think that one solution to this problem is for the parents to talk to their children about these things early. It might sound so awkward, really; when the parents are still living and they talk about how to divide their properties equally, if there’s anything to divide (haha). That is the most proactive way to stop the problem from ever surfacing.
Well, those are my top three. There may be a lot more reasons for siblings to fight for, but in the end, I would like to believe that for whatever reasons siblings fight, at the end of the day, brothers and sisters should never fail to reconcile. Family will always be family, no matter what.
I hope I made clear why I put the 5SOS Song “Amnesia” on top of this blog (haha). Well, forgetting the cause of pain can make difficult things easier to do, like “forgiving”. 🙂