9 Things Everyone With Younger Siblings Learns to Accept ... Eventually

9 Things Everyone With Younger Siblings Learns to Accept ... Eventually

Nine of the most relatable things about being the leader of the pack.

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Regardless if you grew up years ago or can relate to this now, these struggles are something us older children have all experienced.

1. The fact that you are your parents' guinea pig.

Whether it was riding a bike, or taking the SATs, your parents used you to figure out which method worked best. You were also the tester child for discipline, and it still pains you when your parents disregard things that you would have gotten grounded for.

2. You were always the babysitter. For. FREE.

Saturdays were never, ever for the boys. Unless the boys were your younger siblings. Regardless if you had plans on the calendar for weeks, if Mom and Dad wanted to go out, you were their go-to. Getting paid in ice cream was the luckiest you got. (But who's complaining?)

3. Always getting blamed for everything your younger siblings did and getting lectured for them "not knowing better."

"Why did you let your sister do that!?" was a common phrase in my house. As if it was my problem that my little sister got into my mom's makeup while I was at a friend's house.

4. Always having to be "perfect."

You always had tiny, impressionable people looking up to you, and almost every move you made was copied and repeated by them, especially the stupid things, until they've picked up another one of your bad habits, just from being around you. If you grew up in a house anything like I did, you had pressure from your parents to be their "role model" and pressured yourself to not mess them up.

5. You couldn't hang out your friends without the littles joining in.

Regardless of the time of day, the season, or the activity, my little siblings ALWAYS tagged along with my friends. At the time, it was the most annoying thing in the world. No gossiping or talking about boys, because there was no way you were giving them any more ammo for their blackmail gun. Looking back on it though, I would trade the world to have my little brother come hang out and cry with laughter with my friends and I just one more time.

6. Getting your drivers license wasn’t for you, it was so you can drive your siblings all over.

I swear the day I got my license and car, a huge tattoo showed up on my head that said "PERSONAL DRIVER." I appreciate my parents that much more now, because driving with two bickering kids in the back seat is not a good time. Not only did I realize that kids are SO MUCH work, despite being small, these kids have BIG lives, places to go, and people to see. Lots of them. Whether it be having a jam session when dropping them off at camp, or getting McFlurrys from McDonald's at night and having a rant session, these seemingly annoying car rides are some of my best memories.

7. That sibling rivalries were not just a myth made up on TV.

Having the most athletic, smart and compassionate little siblings was frustrating sometimes. Not only because everyone loved them, but because I was the compassionate and smart one first. (Not the athletic one though... that's all on them.) Being the oldest comes with accepting the fact that just like a mother, you put yourself (as others put you) on the back burner. Comparing my sister's grades to my grades was embarrassing for me, but it kept the rivalry alive. She was the brainiac, and I was the goofy one. We would fight over who was overall a better person, but then we realized that sibling rivalries were stupid and we each had our own strengths.

8. You never really grow up.

Always having younger kids around meant more responsibility, but also more fun. You got to vicariously live through your younger siblings. Whether it was amusement parks or Disney movies, you got to do it all twice.

9. The fact that they grow up. Become their own people. And that they aren’t your little partners in crime anymore.

Watching these little humans turn into not-so-little humans, and then eventually little adults is the most mind-boggling thing ever. Having younger siblings gives you such a sense of maturity and responsibility, and if you're anything like me, they become your children, despite the three-year age difference. You can only hope you did your best as a role model and as a sister as you watch them spread their wings. Seeing them off to homecomings, parties, dates, AP tests, and all things grown up is extremely bitter sweet. You love that you now have someone old enough to grab late night ice cream with, but you hate that you don't have someone to play dolls with and push in a stroller. Just as your parents did to you, you slowly learn to push them out of the nest, and hope they fly, just like you did. (But maybe fly a little higher or a little bit quicker)

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11 Reasons Why Your Little Sister Is Your Biggest Blessing

She will forever be your go-to Netflix date, your late-night life talk partner, and your absolute best friend.
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She's the person you care for with all your heart and sometimes hate passionately. She's the one you misbehave with yet the one who often keeps you in check. You've been there since her day one, and she changed your life forever. She is truly your partner in every crime, your shoulder to cry on when life is too much to handle on your own, and the very best friend you never expected to love this much. She's your little sister, and there are many reasons why she is the best thing that ever happened to you.

1. She makes you want to be a better person.

She's your baby sister, and you want her to grow up to be a genuine and well-respected person, which means you must be that person for her to look up to. She gives you a reason to be better.

2. You were her first friend, and that is a difficult bond to break.

From the day she was born, you were who she latched onto. You were her friend before she knew anyone else, and that makes your relationship unbelievably strong.

SEE ALSO: Dear Little Sister, While You're At College

3. She matures you.

You find yourself feeling motherly when it comes to your little sister. Your instinct will always be to protect her, often maturing you beyond your years.

4. She will always keep you young.

Although you want to be a grown-up example in her life, she will always be a reminder to have more fun and to let loose. She also has a better sense of style than you ever did at her age, so pay attention.

5. Your life-long friends have known her almost as long as you have, and they love her too.

You may have been her very first friend, but your friends fell in love with her at a young age as well. You know you've got a pretty great little sister when your friends never fail to hug her upon arrival.

6. She supports your decisions.

This does not mean she will always agree with them, but as your sister, she trusts you to do the right thing.

7. And helps you make the ones that stump you.

She may not have as much life experience as you do, but sometimes this can work to your advantage. She hasn't made as many mistakes as you have, and this can mean she's not afraid to take chances and push you to make scary decisions.

8. Distance is no match for you two.

You could go long periods of time without talking and nothing would change. You'll pick up right where you left off every time, although you prefer to stay in touch consistently.

9. You've become really good at giving advice and looking out for people.

Your little sister will come to you for advice, and you become more and more prepared to give it every time. This experience has also helped you help your friends when they need your input.

10. You will always be needed.

We all want to feel like we are a necessity to someone. We want to feel like we are improving someone's quality of life. While you may find this in other relationships over the years, your little sister will always need you, and it will always be rewarding.

11. She's a constant in your ever-changing life.

People will come and go in your life. Relationships will end and friends will fade, but your sister isn't going anywhere.

The day she was brought home, your sister changed your life dramatically. Maybe you were an only child before she came along, and she stole your thunder for a little while, but you'll forgive her for it. You'll realize that she changed your life for the better. She became your truest friend and your biggest blessing.


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To The Older Sibling I Never Had, I Wish You Were Here To Guide Me

I know you don't exist, and I know you never will, but sometimes I catch myself imagining a life with you in it.

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Even though years have passed since this horrific day, it still haunts my memory. Starting high school is a terrifying feeling and an insane transition when you don't have anyone to guide you through it. It was a mere 15-step walk to the door, and once I was inside my parents promised me there would be somebody there to help me find my classes, so why did I feel like I was being thrown straight into the gates of hell? I counted down the minutes until we pulled into the school parking lot and dreaded the sound of the car door opening and the anticipated start to the "best four years of my life."

As we were pulling up, I saw a girl who went to the same middle school as I following her older brother, who was a senior through the front doors as if it had been rehearsed at home. At this moment, I would have given my right foot to walk in her shoes right behind an older brother just this once. Eventually, with no place to hide, I just walked inside.

Unfortunately, this would not be the last of my longing for guidance from the older sibling I've never had.

I get it, I got a B in math. I get it, if I would have spent last Friday night studying instead of out with my friends it is possible that I could have gotten an A. But, what my parents seemed to not get was that life actually does go on even if you get a B on a report card. Time doesn't stop, your dreams don't diminish, and you are still viewed as a fairly competent person.

Luckily for my younger sisters, it seems my parents eventually did get it at the cost of my phone being taken away for three months and my social life ceasing to exist for the rest of that school year. As I spent every Friday night at home studying I longed, for just this once, to have an older sibling who was willing to take this hit for me.

Why did nobody tell me that it's actually more fun to go to school dances with friends than the boy you barely know who is just desperate for some conversation with the opposite sex?

I always wondered why that girl I went to middle school with never took a date to any of our formals or homecomings. Eventually, four homecomings and two proms later, I realized that this was because stumbling through the awkward introductions to family, tolerating the completely posed and overdone photos that would never actually be posted anywhere because you didn't talk outside of this forced interaction, and small talk over fruit punch and loud music was never actually necessary. Of course, I passed this message to my younger sisters and saved them the struggle of finding out for themselves.

Don't even get me started on being the first sibling to have to navigate applying to colleges.

I really could have used you then. I'm convinced there is nothing more difficult than trying to fill out a FAFSA or Common Application with absolutely no guidance or experience. Is my application essay long enough? Should I apply for early or regular admission? What if I don't get accepted anywhere? As selfish as it sounds, I would have given my other foot not to have to find these things out for myself.

I'd trade a lifetime worth of shotgun privileges to have you in my life to help me figure this stuff out.

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