What happens when your siblings are your best friends

Siblings share a bond like no other, especially when they’re twins. Though Kassi, my twin, and I have never experienced the famous “twin telepathy,” we can sense things in each other like no one else can. This phenomenon isn’t due to any witchcraft we were born with, it just comes naturally from being so close. Think about your best friend while growing up. Now imagine sharing the same parents with this friend, and also the same house, pets and everyday experiences. Remember how many times you begged your parents to have a sleepover on a school night? That’s what it’s like when you’re close to your siblings. It’s a never-ending sleepover and hangout with your closest friend.

However, the strong sisterly bond does not stop with Kassi. I am also close with my two older sisters. The average person probably doesn’t consider their siblings to be their best friends, so I guess it makes the four of us relatively unusual. My sisters are my best friends not only because I’m most comfortable with them, but because we share some of the core components that make me who I am — past events, family dynamics, decades of inside jokes, our childhood, health routines, yearly holidays and our traditions.

While the four of us are seemingly inseparable, we all have our own lives. We attend different schools, we have relationships, jobs and ambitions that we’re independently working toward. Just because we’re close does not mean that we’re freakish clones of one another. But we do share a relationship that no one else would be able to understand — a relationship that doesn’t compare to any relationship one of us has shared with a friend.

As wonderful as it is to have your siblings as your best friends, there are some critical downsides. I was basically born with best friends, meaning that I never had as much of an incentive to actively make friends throughout my childhood. I made friends easily throughout my years while participating in a normal social life, but I always struggled with opening up to them. There was always a limitation to the depth of my relationships. It was difficult opening up to friends knowing that it would always be simpler to explain thoughts to my siblings. This circumstance hasn’t necessarily hindered my ability to make friends, though it has interfered with my ability to develop close friends.

I often scroll through my Facebook newsfeed and see classic Buzzfeed articles about meeting best friends in college. Sometimes these commentaries encourage me to become closer with my friends. Shouldn’t I branch out to people other than my siblings? Does it really matter? I have a lot of amazing people in my life. People that I can depend on, open up to and be my complete self around. It shouldn’t make a difference if these special people in my life happen to share the same bloodline as me or if I met them during my sophomore year of college. It comes down to finding people in your life who understand you better than you understand yourself. These people are rare, and it takes a long time to build a bond like that. Once you have people like that in your life, don’t let them go. If they happen to be your siblings, consider yourself lucky — family is forever.

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