In a world that is ever changing and evolving, even from the generation of our parents, it is inevitable that diversity amongst siblings occurs. Despite being brought up under the same roof, parents face different challenges with each child but that is ok. Although each might be your child it would be boring to merely have clones of the same child, we are still human beings with our own identity and personalities.
Having children with varying needs is a good thing, after all is the end goal not to raise your child to become a good person and one day fly the nest? It is necessary to have an open mind with your children because even amongst siblings there is so much that they can teach each other. Small things from a child’s perspective can mean so much when they are attempting to figure out who they are, such as picking out their own clothes in spite of the large “men” or “women” signs hanging above the rails. It will eliminate questions and bad decision later on, especially in adolescence when they are learning so much about the world already, let alone about who they are as well. This is not about you looking liberal as a parent or numerous other misconceptions that people have when a little boy bounces down the road in a pink shirt, this is about what makes your child happy and validated, because if your parents can accept your diversity and quirks then what else matters?
Mealtime in our house is often a seven-way daily recap with the youngsters of the family often asking questions about things they are yet to understand. This could range from asking me about a novel I am learning about in literature or even about things that they have heard such as “what is gay?”. Your children, despite differing character traits, have so much to teach each other that it helps them become who they want to be.
It goes without saying that having five children with entirely different personalities is taxing on my parents as they often must switch between make-up artist, book worm, teacher and best friend. However, when each has their own recognisable traits, as well as a common moral compass that you have instilled within them, it can be rewarding to witness each of your children develop into their own person.
I am the reader, writer and joker in my family, which is a stark contrast to my sister who steers me round the isles of make-up whilst my head is in a book trying to find some solace amongst the bright pink colours surrounding me. She takes life much too seriously and can never wait for the newest Justin Bieber song to come out, we could not be more different if we tried. And yet, she is my best friend, we find common ground because we both care enough to try. I still run into her room when my favourite fictional character dies and announce the injustice to her and she still runs into my room as she’s running late to meet her friends and asks for my opinion on her makeup. It is almost beyond explanation as to how we are like this, maybe it is just a sibling thing? Maybe we will always be drawn to each other because that is how we were raised. Or maybe it is simply because we put the time in for each other, despite our wildly different personality traits.
To concerned parents who worry about their variety amongst children; do not waste your time worrying. Your children will find common ground and even if they do not if they have been raised to see value in their relationships they will always treasure their brothers and sisters, no amount of different hobbies or personality traits will change that. Your children are there to support one another and when it comes to them against the world, or what it seems like the entire world, they will band together because they are family.