Having grown up with two brothers I cannot speak from personal experience, but watching my two daughters unfold and deepen their relationship daily proofs to me that having a sister is one of life’s biggest blessings.
I never wanted only one child. Kids need siblings, how else do they learn to share and forgive? And science is on my side! Apparently, having a sister can make you a better person, physically and mentally.
My two girls are very close in age – they are exactly 2 years and 4 days apart. This was not planned, but turns out it is a huge blessing. Having two kids roughly the same age means they have a greater chance of being friends, playmate, and each other’s confidantes. And I see that happening, every day. My two are vastly different, from the way they dress to the way they react, what they love and what they hate. And yet, they find enough things that they have in common to play the most elaborate fantasy games. To laugh uncontrollably. To gossip. And to get up to mischief.
Multiple studies have found that there are benefits to having a sister. They bring a different dynamic to families and contribute to happy kids who grow up into happy adults. Having a sister is quantifiably great!
What makes them so great? I can imagine what a pain it must be trying to keep her out of your closet while ensuring you have free reins to hers. Sharing a bathroom. Arguing over the stupidest things, fueled by raging hormones. But I can also imagine late-night gossip sessions, swapping tips and tricks for getting your crush interested, helping each other put the perfect outfit together for that important interview. And just generally being there for each other. Back to my girls. They are 2 years apart. Small enough age gap to help them become friends, far enough to give both the chance of developing their own personality and character. Two different people yet so alike in many things. They actively look for each other, just to fight like cat and dog when they are together.
A 2010 research study found that having a sister makes you kinder. Another study found that people with sisters experience less guilt, feelings of fear and loneliness. They are also more likely to share their feelings, even if only with their sister. One of the reasons for this might be the fact that sisters make you feel more loved, and thus accepted.
The positive impact of having a sister not only covers your formative years but have a great impact on your adult life. Statistics show that people with sisters are less likely to get a divorce. Kids who grow up with a sister are more likely to be comfortable to engage conversationally and to express emotions. Brothers tend to have the opposite effect. The more siblings you have the better equipped you are to make a success of your marriage and avoid divorce. One of the theories behind this finding is that more siblings mean more exposure to conflict as well as practice in handling said conflict.
Having a sister makes men better at talking to women and responding with more empathy, with these interactions causing less anxiety. These men can express themselves better emotionally, which is fundamental to good mental health. Having a sister also makes men more independent and goal-oriented – sisters create a support system which enables the siblings to rely on each other as opposed to their parents or other caregivers. This creates more balance and less internal stress.
Having a sister is awesome, for various reasons. If you are a girl, you automatically have a second closet to choose clothes from, and if you are a boy you have free training on how to treat a lady. Having a sister truly is a blessing, so be sure to treat her right and let her know how much she means to you!