Having younger siblings is a blessing, and there's plenty you should be thanking them for, if you haven't already. I mean, of course you're the oldest and most responsible, so you should be the one doing all the oldest most responsible type things like thanking people for being part of your life. And of course there are also many things your younger siblings should be thanking you for, like for pioneering curfews with your parents. And guiding them through life. And, you know, making them instantly cooler by association to you. And maybe those few times you bought them six bottles of beer when they were 17 and your mum said they could only have four. I dunno. Just spitballing here.
There's a delicate back and forth between siblings that toes the line between name calling, prank pulling, and swelling, fierce, unconditional love. Because maybe you'll bicker with your siblings over who has to sit in the back seat when you're home for a visit and mum's driving, but they're also you're best and most reliable friends in the whole world. Here are a few things us older siblings should take a moment to thank our younger siblings for, if we haven't already:
1. For Allowing Us To Use Them As Our Guinea Pigs
Thank your younger siblings for every time they were your willing experiment. Whether it was assigning them Pokémon characters and making them battle, putting make up all over their (mostly male) faces, setting up a classroom and forcing them to be your students or conducting nude but whimsical Anne Geddes style photo shoots with them (all of these are things I did to my little brothers, if that wasn't clear), you should give thanks. They provided you with entertainment that literally only served as fodder with which you can embarrass them now.
2. For Making Us Look Good By Comparison
Being the oldest, you're probably the best. Oldest children are usually over achievers, decisive and socially outgoing. Moreover, they're the first child, and therefore the one parents are the most excited about. Thank your little siblings for all the dumb things younger children do that just accentuate how grown up and responsible and amazing you are. Thanks and also sorry for being a d*ck about it, but you can't fight the truth.
3. For Teaching Us All The Young Kid Stuff
Being the oldest means that you're also the oldest. I know that sounds like the worst sentence ever, but bear with me. As you get older, you lose touch with youth culture. You become a little bit bitter. A little more set in your ways. Your younger siblings fill you in on what you need to know to be "down with the kids" — for instance, what "fleek" means (I'm still not sure), and that Justin Bieber is making a "comeback" (didn't realize he left). Thanks kids for making us feel youthful!
4. For Being Our Unconditional Army
Your younger siblings, mostly because they didn't know any better, had your back since forever. Sure, you poked and prodded each other and were annoying as hell from time to time, but they were always, and still are, your own personal army. Without questions, your siblings will be there when sh*t goes down to support you.
5. For Making Us Feel Wise
It's wonderful to be able to impart sage life wisdom on your younger siblings, and every time they look up to you, come to you for advice, or use you as inspiration, they're making you feel like you're doing something right in life, even if you feel like you're a mess. As it turns out, an older siblings mess is a younger siblings dream life.
6. For Listening To Us Complain
Again, something that younger siblings don't have a choice in is listening to you complain. So while you're busy advising them on life, they're giving back by nodding and making eye contact while you rant on about something ridiculous your mum said or something that happened at work that no one else cares about. Your younger siblings are your sounding board, and sometimes they even surprise you and give you good life advice just when you thought you had it down.
7. For Always Believing In Us
You know who always thinks you're amazing? Your younger siblings. Even when it feels like they're giving you hell, they're looking up to you because they want to be just like you. You give them the juice to try and be harder, better, stronger, faster. So even when you're down on yourself, remember: there's a younger version of you who believes you can do it.
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