Growing up with siblings

How important is it that my kids grow up with siblings?

For me for my children to grow up with siblings is one of the most important things in life, I want my kids to have a similar upbringing, lifestyle and experiences as I had with my siblings.

My life growing up with siblings.

Incase some of you don’t know I’m the eldest of 6 siblings, I have 3 younger brothers, all quite close in age with only an 8 year age gap between us. Then years later my Dad remarried and had two more kids. One more brother and on the sixth and final attempt he got a daughter and we finally got a baby sister. God help her boyfriend’s when she’s older…

We’re all so close and always have been, even now we still speak or see each other weekly. To be honest they’re my best friends nothing will break that bond we all have as siblings.


Dont get me wrong, growing up with 3 younger brothers fairly close in age we were very competitive, or more truthfully we fought a lot. We fought about all sorts, it didn’t really matter, anything like; who got the big room, or the top bunk, who stayed up latest, who got the largest slice of cake or who was better at football (FYI this is me). You name it we probably found a way to fight about it, but we were young boys and we were having fun. More often than not it we were only play fighting with maybe the odd sly punch, kick or funny face thrown in behind our parents back, my dad often still jokes about how he felt like a WWE referee trying to sort us out.


That all sounds like chaos but we loved it; the fun, the fights, the closeness, the bonding and the fantastic love that we shared every day made us the family we are today. The fact we are still so close plus love and appreciate each other as much as we do is testament to our fantastic parents who always supported and encouraged us to be best friends no matter what.

Our life now with two children

So as I’ve mentioned having siblings and more importantly being close to your brothers or sisters is so high up in my list of priorities in life. It has made me the man I am today and I will do everything in my power as a Dad to show my kids how close I am with my brothers and sister and I’ll teach them how much it means for them to be best friends with their siblings.


Right now Alba is nearly 3 and Arran is 6 months and they honestly love each other to bits, it’s so amazing to watch them every day. Alba just needs to walk into a room and Arran pees his pants laughing at her. Nobody can make him laugh like his big sister, he’s utterly besotted with her, here’s hoping it stays that way for a long time.


Arran’s at the age that he’s slowing getting the hang of rolling or more accurately falling face first from a sitting position as he pushes himself to get that toy that’s just out of reach. But Alba will be right there helping, encouraging or even comforting him should he fall.

Even though she’s that little bit older, she still loves to play with him (sometimes a little too enthusiastically) and she loves to teach him new things. Even at this early stage in their lives you can see that they have a special bond and it is incredible to see.

Will the love and they have for each other right now last?

I’d like to hope so, maybe for a few years longer anyway, but I’m not stupid enough to think that they will always be best friends and never want to be apart from each other.  The older they get the more they’ll get on each other’s nerves and annoy each other to the point they want to kill each other. They might drift apart and have their own friends and lives, that’s okay, but despite of all that I will make sure as a family we are close as we can be. Then hopefully in the future, even if they have their own friends and separate lives they will know the true value and importance of being close. Without sounding too much like my Dad, friends might come and go, but your brothers and sisters will always be there for you.


Do I want more children?

I’m sure coming from such a large and close family we’ll no doubt one day want and have more children but right now we don’t have any plans to add to our family. Regardless of what happens in the future they will always be part of a large extended family with too many siblings, uncles, aunties, cousins, nieces and nephews to count them all. And we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Thanks for reading

This real life Dad xx



  1. ohjustmylittleblog

    July 29, 2017 at 8:51 pm

    I only have one sister but she’s my best friend. We’re 20 months apart which makes me want a small age gap for our children, but my husband disagrees!

    1. thisreallifedad

      July 29, 2017 at 9:11 pm

      Oh dear, just keep at him and you never know. Even a 3-4 year gap is still close enough I think.

  2. tomsandersonn

    July 29, 2017 at 9:03 pm

    I also agree with what you’ve said. As someone who is 1 of 7, I feel strongly that it’s extremely beneficial to grow up with siblings of all ages. They teach you so many skills and lessons. Honestly feel as though my life would be completely different if it wasn’t for the upbringing I have had with my siblings.

    1. thisreallifedad

      July 29, 2017 at 9:15 pm

      Hi, thanks for taking the time to read and comment on my post, I really do appreciate it. I know, looking back how boring would it seem without your siblings to clash and play with.

  3. Fern

    July 29, 2017 at 9:43 pm

    I agree. Growing up with a sibling was so important for me. I am one of 5 siblings, two from my dad’s first marriage, me and my brother, and then my sister who my mam decided to have last minute with her partner a few years after her and my dad separated. I mainly just grew up with my brother though, and didn’t really know my older siblings until a few years ago.

    My brother was my best friend growing up, and like you, we fought like cat and dog but we would still be okay after a few minutes, laugh and move onto the next argument. He is still so close to me now, and I dread to think what my childhood would have been like without him. All of my memories are with him, and I can’t wait to have a second baby so Oscar can experience the same.

    This was a lovely post and made me feel so sentimental!


    1. thisreallifedad

      July 29, 2017 at 8:50 pm

      😊 thank you so much for the lovely comment. Siblings are the best and the worst at the same time, but my best memories are growing up with them. X

  4. Sreya Gupta

    July 30, 2017 at 10:33 am

    I can relate to it. I grew up with an elder sister. And, we used to fight every single day. But, I remember when my parents used to go out, they used to ask my sister to keep an eye on me if I’m studying or not. We used to goof around all the and just before 8 pm (they used to come back to home at 8 pm) we used to pull out our books and used to act like the only thing that we did is studying.
    I miss those days.

  5. Clarissa

    July 30, 2017 at 4:04 pm

    Being the eldest of two When I was younger I found fun until I hit 17 there is 11 years between me and my sister so you can imagine The ruckus. As Ive become a mum myself I now realise having two girls myself with an age gap hard to contain.. on top of this they both have autism

  6. Giulia innamorati

    August 1, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    I am an only child and i love this, but sometimes i’d like have a brother or a sister ahah

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