Jul
29
2011

What makes growing up with siblings so difficult?

Cynthia and Lydia refer to each other as “George” and “Fred” respectively. As a celebration of Cynthia’s 19th birthday, Lydia made this video blog for her. Goofy, but definitely heartwarming.

It is a blessing to see two sisters grow up loving each other so much.

I can’t say this was true for me growing up. I was the only son, but my three sisters and I had several bitter moments. Wendy grew up with her sibling group of three sisters (a second sibling group older than her had two brothers and one sister, making a total of six). She recalls the same kind of vitriol in their younger years.

To be honest, Wendy and I raised Alicia and Alissa (now 27 and 25) much differently than our current crew of kids. They, like us, had a bitter relationship growing up. Lots of fights, jealousy, bickering, etc. As adults they now have a good relationship, just as Wendy and I have good relationships with our adult siblings.

Do you relate? What made growing up with siblings so difficult?

I suppose there are a myriad of issues wrapped up in sibling rivalry, but allow me the chance to try to hang it on one thing. LOVE. This has been the revealing truth in our parenting, the journey Wendy and I have walked on and now write on.

Like most young parents, our first stab at parenting involved behavior, good works, and appearance. Love wasn’t absent, but it sure wasn’t “the most excellent way” (1 Corinthians 12:31).

Today, we strive to build a culture of love. Good behavior and all that jazz is still important, but the importance of it has been downgraded quite a few notches. This gives our children permission to…

  • …love each other through misbehavior,
  • …accept one another rather than be embarrassed for them,
  • …live together in appreciation of the others’ gifts rather than jealous of their strengths.

It’s all good when love is the central goal of the family. When love is in the house.

About Chris Jeub

Chris is the father of 16 children, busily running the family businesses and learning the depths of love along the way.

  • Jillaine Wonick

    Amen!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=799259836 Amy Woolley Pederson

    I love this post!  Thank you for hitting the nail on the head.  

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=799259836 Amy Woolley Pederson

      This post has been running through my head all day, especially the phrase, “…live together in appreciation of the others’ gifts rather than jealous of their strengths”.  Those words are powerful and I can see the need to reinforce this with a few of my kids.  This came at just the right time. Praise the Lord!

      • http://www.jeubfamily.com Chris Jeub

        No kidding! When I wrote those last three bullets, I thought, “I could write a book on each one of those.”

  • http://www.clarkchatter.blogspot.com Ginger

    I think what makes growing up with siblings difficult is our sin nature. 😉 
    My sister and I argued and fought all the time because our parents weren’t Christians at the time and therefore did not use scripture to train us in righteousness. Not to mention that we were out-schooled, so the classism was there from the start. My kids don’t have that since their schoolmates are all different ages. And because they spend so much time together (with hubby and I training them how to get along biblically), they love each other like best friends. 

  • http://www.clarkchatter.blogspot.com Ginger

    I think what makes growing up with siblings difficult is our sin nature. 😉 
    My sister and I argued and fought all the time because our parents weren’t Christians at the time and therefore did not use scripture to train us in righteousness. Not to mention that we were out-schooled, so the classism was there from the start. My kids don’t have that since their schoolmates are all different ages. And because they spend so much time together (with hubby and I training them how to get along biblically), they love each other like best friends. 

  • sandra

    my sister is almost 7 yrs older than me and we are the only 2 children in the family.of course having been an only child for so long and having our parents all to herself ,she was naturally jealous when I came along.
    That continued as we got older,and she quickly figured out that if seh could tattletale and point out all of my flaws-iow,make me out to be a brat,she could be the most beloved child,and that’s exactly what happened.And some of that continues to this day.although we do get along better now.

    • sandra

      I should say WERE the only 2 children;we’re grown now.

  • http://julianne-betweenthelines.blogspot.com/ Julianne

    This is such a sweet video! Thank you for sharing!