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Brothers' Rivalry

Oh yes, brother rivalry exists in my house. When they were younger, the bigger brother would turn a tad nasty on the baby when he felt the other one was getting more attention or praise. There were several times when I would see, from start to finish, how the bigger would pinch, hit or do some violence on the small one. As the little one cried and I reprimand him, he would stare blankly and go "What?" as if he didn't do anything.

Fast forward to now, big bro has mellowed a lot. The competition in the house has become a little healthier, but still with the same brand of brotherly taunt.

Their competition focus: academics (Teynks, Gad.)

Every quarter, each competes who has more stars (and the corresponding ranking) and who's higher in the class ranking. Both boys, thankfully, are always in top 10 (or sometimes slipping to 11th). One gets tortured when the other is higher.

Certificates are also a big deal. Any kind of certificate brought home by one (even Most Punctual) is met by the other with big eyes and raised eyebrows.

Last Saturday, 12 year old whipped out another certificate for third quarter, Most Cooperative. He said he was supposed to be given Best Leader for first quarter and Most Responsible for second quarter, but he didn't have the hard copy.

When 8 year old woke up, he stared at the piece of paper suspiciously. "What's that?" Certificate for Most Cooperative. I told him it would've been nice if they've printed out the Best Leader instead. 8 year old scoffed. "Best leader... Maybe he's the best leader of non-leaders!"

A little later, 8 year old asked me for a rag because he wanted to clean the sink (!) As I looked for a rag, he mischievously pointed to the certificate and asked "How about this one?"

Naughty, naughty...

Been reading about sibling rivalry and I've found it's a healthy part of growing up. As long as each child gets the idea that he's loved for whoever/ whatever he is, they'll be alright.

Originally posted 17 March 2008


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