Siblings: one minute it’s all love, cuddles and companionship, the next it’s all out war. The fascinating and entertaining relationship between siblings continues to evolve over time, but it’s often in the younger years that we see some of the nuttiest displays of sibling collusion, power plays – and, of course, paybacks!
Let’s take a look at some of the crazy things young kids do to their siblings:
1. At some point, trick the other into eating something hideous
Like dog food. Or that stinky packet of dried fish that lurks in the rear of the pantry. Sometimes the food (or not-quite-food as the case may be) is surreptitiously deposited into a sandwich or bowl of soup; other times, it’s essentially force-fed, with a threat thrown in about what will happen if they don’t eat it.
2. Convince the other that one (or both) of them is, in fact, an alien
Because those imaginations are BIG. And, it’s apparently amusing to convince a sibling – usually a younger sibling – that they will sprout horns from their head and turn a slimy shade of green by the age of three. Another spin on this, is convincing a sibling that they are adopted. Once that seed of doubt is planted, there’s no amount of fun that can be had by siblings!
3. Scare each other to bits
Kids love to scare, but don’t particularly enjoy being scared, so this makes the perfect setting for an on-going battle in the sibling arena. From jumping out of the wardrobe in full Halloween get-up, to depositing dead (or live) insects under pillows, the fright-fests between siblings are always epic – and noisy! And usually end in tears.
4. Tie the other up and leave them there until an adult finds them
And if tying up is too complicated for little hands, just shutting a door firmly and possibly locking it works just fine as a Plan B. No remorse, just to get them out of the way. Of course, the culprit will claim it had nothing to do with the fact that their favourite show was about to start and they didn’t want to share the flip-out sofa.
5. Decorate each other in bizarre substances
Mum’s side of the bathroom cupboard is always a good starting point for such an exercise, with plenty of hair products, make-up, lotions and potions. But it can (and often does) progress to such revolting toppings as boogers, the slime at the bottom of the fish tank, or squished worms. It’s always gross and always ends with the need for siblings to be urgently bathed before they get all that mucky stuff everywhere!
6. Tee up a game of hide and seek, but strategically forget to ‘seek’
Because kids find it interesting to see how long their sibling will stay there, thinking they have finally won – even if their feet are sticking out from under the curtain.
7. Label each other with names that make little sense, or are downright insulting
‘Fart-face’, ‘Banana-brain’ and ‘Poo-head’ are classic examples. Being thriving little actors, custom voices, songs and gestures are often thrown in for maximum sibling annoyance.
8. As in ancient times, resolve battles with an organised fight
The front lawn. After breakfast. Winner gets the remote – all day. And the last cookie.
9. Fart, sneeze and cough over each other
Because it’s funny, right? Not so funny for mum who has to clean up the mess, and endure another week of sick kids!
10. Use each other as guinea pigs
You know, for educational gain. Like, does it hurt when you push a thumb tack into a thumb? Can you actually staple fingers together? How long does it take to get blue permanent marker out of blonde eyebrows?
There’s torture, there’s teasing – little siblings throw it all at each other, and then some. But while there may be tears, fights and more screaming than you’ve ever heard, sibling shenanigans are underpinned by love and companionship. If you’re lucky enough, you just might catch them hugging each other in between battles.