Social Question

canidmajor's avatar

Are your siblings people you would choose to know socially if you weren’t related to them?

Asked by canidmajor (16632points) September 11th, 2018

If you didn’t share a background and family history with your siblings, if perhaps you only knew them because you were on the same committee, or were acquainted through personal friends, would you seek them out socially?
Do you share common interests?
Are their personalities compatible with yours?
Are their moral and ethical views ones you can be OK with?

Or would you perhaps see them as people you would not choose to associate with beyond the necessary?

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28 Answers

chyna's avatar

I have 3 older brothers. My middle one died 3 years ago. He and my youngest brother would be people I would absolutely hang out with. Other than my youngest brother liking Trump (no one is perfect, plus he doesn’t vote, sooo), their wit is very much like mine and both very sweet and charming people. We still have no idea where my oldest brother came from. Switched at birth? Adopted? Not only does he not look like us, he is dark haired, dark eyes, we have light hair, he has no sense of humor, doesn’t like animals, has no hobbies or interests that the rest of us have. It’s a struggle to have a conversation with him. I love him, but prefer to just text as a way to communicate with him. Good thought provoking question!

2davidc8's avatar

Some yes, some no.

LadyMarissa's avatar

No, we don’t socialize now & can see NO reason to change the status quo!!!

SergeantQueen's avatar

My older ones, yes.
Younger one, hell no

Dutchess_lll's avatar

One of them yes. The other no.

Kardamom's avatar

Yes, I got very lucky in the brother department : )

MrGrimm888's avatar

Lol. In most cases, no…..

SQUEEKY2's avatar

I love my Brother, and sister dearly but if I wasn’t related to them probably not, we have very little in common.

longgone's avatar

I have two younger sisters close to my age, and another two that are still very young. I’ll only talk about the ones I grew up with here, but I’m happy to provide an update in about twenty years for the others:

Yes, I would absolutely choose to know my sisters.

We share some common interests (we tend to like the same books, we’re curious about psychology, we like dogs…), but mostly we enjoy each other’s company because we have a highly compatible perspective on life.

My sisters are some of the most compassionate, intelligent, and funny people I know. We were all together just last week, and I think I laughed for two hours straight.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I would likely not know my brother. He and I are from different planets.
When he was living in a 200 year old, dusty, creaky, shoe box sized apartment in Boston he visited here and constantly made fun of our 5 acres, ranch house, in a quiet neighborhood with lots of room and freedom.
“In the same distance you walk to get to your mail box, I pass 2 coffee shops, a dry cleaner, an ATM, and a convenience store. How do you live like this?” “You have a well?! You’re drinking spider piss?!”
It was endless.

raum's avatar

@LuckyGuy Both of those places sound great in their own way.

However, his personality does not. :/

gondwanalon's avatar

My two older sisters are the last people that I would associate with.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@raum He lived in the building on the freedom trail right near the statue of Paul Revere. Parking was impossible, crime intolerable, and noise unbearable. (IMO. But I said nothing) He said every day he could watch Japanese people have their cameras stolen because they handed them to strangers so they could take their pictures. the perps would step back and tell the victims to pose and then they’d run off with the goods.
Had I lived in that neighborhood I would have been sitting at my window with a gas powered, suppressed, paint ball marking gun. And would be getting out of prison about now. :-)

canidmajor's avatar

I don’t know whether to be encouraged or discouraged by these posts. We are aggressively encouraged to believe that our siblings are blessings, on whom we are supposed to depend. I have no liking for either of my sibs, I have completely cut off one, and barely have contact with the other.
So many people have told me that that attitude is unnatural.

I am delighted that some of you have such lovely relationships with your sins, but that seems not to be the norm.

Thank you all.

raum's avatar

@LuckyGuy LOL! It would be pretty hilarious to see two of you guys switch places for a week.

canidmajor's avatar

Ack! autocorrect fail, “sibs” not “sins”.

SergeantQueen's avatar

@canidmajor It all depends.
Ideally, we should depend on our family, look to them for support, be there for them, etc.
Sometimes though, regardless of how the parents raised you, people choose different paths/ experience different things that shape them into different people good or bad. Which then means we can’t always depend on them or trust them.
My older siblings I would consider good role models, they are both on a path to being successful, my older brother is back in college and my older sister is having her second kid.
My younger brother has a lot of potentials. Very smart kid. Just doesn’t apply himself.
He’s also immature and acts stupid, and makes jokes I wouldn’t want associated with me.

raum's avatar

@canidmajor I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive necessarily?

My oldest sister and I would probably never be friends if we weren’t related. The way we approach things are often at odds with one another. And a lot of our interaction leaves me super stressed out.

That being said, I am incredibly lucky to have her as my sister. As much as we clash, I know she always has my back. And I’ve got hers.

My brother was a different situation. I’ll always remember my brother as the guy we knew growing up together. But towards the end of his life he was struggling with a meth addiction. I wouldn’t say the person I dealt with towards the end was my “real” brother. But either way, that person was not someone I would want in my life.

My other sister and I were much more similar. Interests, taste, music, humor, approach to things in general. Though after she developed schizophrenia in her mid 20’s, a lot of her personality shifted.

She became super religious with weird views like women need to be in the kitchen. Went from listening to goth and industrial to pop music. Threw out her entire record collection. Went from her signature trench coat and leather boots to Old Navy and QVC.

Despite those changes, I would still like to be friends with her. She still has a very unique, thoughtful and kind approach to people and life. But I’m not sure if I would know to approach her if I didn’t know her from before.

It’s kind of a bummer how we read people so superficially from a distance. :/

canidmajor's avatar

Of course they’re not mutually exclusive, @raum, but the general social feeling is that despite a few bumps, we are conditioned to believe that our blood relatives should be the people we are closest to, and can rely on the most.

This line of thought, though, gets away from the question, which is specifically about whether or not you would choose to know your sibs socially, not about counting on them in fraught times. I’m afraid I derailed my own thread a bit.

@SergeantQueen,I would love to know how your relationships with your sibs matures, but I doubt we’ll all be fluthering in 20 years. It is good to like them when you’re young, I hope that continues on through the decades.

raum's avatar

From a cultural and from an evolutionary biology perspective, it makes sense to cultivate these ideals. But I think it’s far from the norm.

It’s already difficult to have to make the decision to severe those ties. I hope you don’t also take on the burden of thinking it isn’t normal.

My in-laws are a pretty normal family. Honestly, I think that makes them the odd ones out. Ha.

canidmajor's avatar

I am discovering that “normal” is the most fluid of concepts, @raum, and every decade br8ngs greater and greater changes.

chyna's avatar

@canidmajor. You shut your mouth! We WILL be Fluthering in 20 years!

canidmajor's avatar

Hahaha, yes, ma’am!!! :-D

anniereborn's avatar

Probably only one out of 6 and she passed away earlier this year.

raum's avatar

I’m sorry for your loss, @anniereborn.

longgone's avatar

I think I’d agree that good sibling relationships are not the norm. I got lucky.

Parents can do a lot of damage in this area, whether it’s through the unrealistic expectation that siblings should always be best friends, through the unrealistic expectation that they can’t ever get along, or simply because they think it’s a good idea to compare them.

I maintain a highly fulfilling relationship with my sins, thank you.

LadyMarissa's avatar

In my case we agree that we love each other, but we don’t actually like each other!!! So,
IF it came right down to it, we’d probably have each other’s back…at the same time, we’d NEVER be friends!!! When forced into a social situation, we are socially polite to each other & then don’t speak until the next forced social situation!!!

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