The sibling test

The post "Just some things we must tell the children" is one of the most popular ones I've done.  And one of the most frequent comments is "what's the sibling test?"  I've answered the questions briefly but now it's time for a post for "the rest of the story"

The sibling test is really quite simple.  When pondering a serious relationship, our family members rely on the feedback of their sibs.  We've seen it time and time again -- brothers and sisters know one another in a dimension different than anyone else.  Their love goes back further and down deeper than anyone but parents and they are able to assess potential relationships with wisdom that belies their years.  Without overstepping their bounds and interfering in a sibling's love life, our kids have proven their ability to appraise a suitor with such accuracy that we have come to the conclusion that a sibling's approval is as important as a parent's. After all, they have to share the Thanksgiving table with them forever so they oughta have some input!

Now for the background....the sibling test originated in my own dating life.  In my era, we didn't have "DTR" talks nor did we ponder the seriousness of a relationship based on Facebook status.  Most of my peers in the 80's dated lots of folks simultaneously, had lots of harmless fun, and didn't get exclusive until marriage was on the radar.  One of my husband's favorite stories to tell our kids is the time he was my 3rd one day.  I saved the best for last - what can I say?  In spite of the lack of relational commitment, we gals (of course) were always sizing up the fellas to determine if they were "MM" - that would be "marriage material".  Dozens of guys came and went.  Lots made it home to meet my family and come under their scrutiny.  During the time I was dating the tall dark handsome man who is now my husband, I was, nonetheless, "keeping my options open". There were lots of dates to be had and I didn't want to miss any! However, this one continued to appear on the scene,and my family figured it was potentially serious.  My brother remarked to my Mom (and of course the comment made its way to me!) that this would be the one I would marry because he was the only one that wouldn't do what I told him to!  Initially, that insight irritated me.  That didn't sound like true love to me - a man that wouldn't do what I wanted, well, my goodness!  But the more I thought about it, the more it made sense to me.  The magnetism I felt for this man was founded on respect.  Admiration that he was not able to be manipulated or intimidated by me.  Instead of feeling like NON love, it felt awfully secure.  Respect.  Yes, there was chemistry.  But there was more to this relationship.

 And somehow my brother could sense it.  Somehow he knew that this tall slim fresh out of college kid would not only love his sister with all his heart, provide him with 3 nieces and 1 nephew to love, help care for his parents, share the ups and downs of UGA football like no other, but also be his best friend for life.

27 years, 4 kids, grandchildren, some tears, lots of laughs, some stresses, an unshakeable faith, a life full of kindness and love....and my brother's still right -- this man still won't do what I tell him to!

And, guess what....I'm so glad.

The sibling test.  It worked.