Being a big brother


I love this photo. For me it epitomises the best moments between my two boys.

My oldest was thrilled to have a little brother. He couldn’t wait to play with him. He wanted to help us; bringing us nappies, toys, milk. His favourite thing to do was to help feed his brother. At first he would patiently give him a bottle. Then, once weaning started he would feed him, again so patiently and with such enthusiasm. I’m sure my younger son ate more when his brother fed him than when I did!

Watching my 7yo learn to be a big brother was beautiful. He is now proving to be a wonderful big brother to his little sister too.

I was, and still am, so proud of the care and love that he shows; how thrilled he is to be given responsibility; and the thoughtful way he brings them both things and shares with them, whether that’s a toy or a treat or a picture he has drawn.

And, of course, I have now had the pleasure of watching the 4yo learn to be a big brother too.

Watching the three of them interact has been very interesting. When they are all together the dynamic is such that the 7yo is very much in charge. The 4yo gets little say in what they do. The wee girl is happy to follow them both anywhere!

It’s made me think about the 4yo’s role as the middle child and I have realised that it is very important for him and the wee girl to have time alone, to allow him to be the big brother. To be in charge, to make the rules, decide the games – and to be the focus of the wee girls attention. He blossoms when allowed to fulfil this role, and the wee girl absolutely adores him. He has an amazing ability to make her laugh :)

Whether they are playing alone or together, one thing is for sure: the wee girl is lucky to have two wonderful big brothers, and I pity any future boyfriends :)

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55 thoughts on “Being a big brother”

  1. thereadingresidence

    That is a gorgeous photo, and loved reading this. I enjoy seeing Boo in her role as a big sister, and she is rather brilliant at it, I think! Nice that you’ve though about your 4yo’s role as both the younger and big brother, and that he is developing and enjoying both so much x

  2. Hee hee, I often wished I had an older brother rather than a younger one, much as I love my younger one, it would have been so useful to learn all about boys in advance and to have that protection thing going on! Lovely photo #WhatsTheStory

  3. suzanne3childrenandit

    It’s very difficult trying to juggle these sibling relationships isn’t it? My middle one has no problem in being the boss! Lovely picture :)

    1. Thank you! I think you just need to be aware of the dynamics and make sure they all get similar opportunities, as much as is possible :)

  4. How utterly gorgeous! What a precious precious moment! My children are pretty close in age – the eldest being 4.5 closely followed by his little sister at 2.5 and another little one at 12 weeks – and I love the age gap, I love that they will him relatively similar needs and interests as they grow up and play together but this picture just shows the job in a bigger age gap too!

    1. I think the three year gaps will feel bigger at some points, especially for the oldest in a couple of years, but at the moment it works well – they do play pretty well together :) Most of the time!

  5. Love, love, love this photo Sara – it must have been wonderful seeing them interact with each other like this. And obviously see the relationships that have developed since then. Thank you so much for sharing with #whatsthestory

    1. It is, I think they are all very lucky xx Although they have their moments fighting like cat and dog, I should write a post about that too :)

  6. Beautiful picture. Having children is amazing and seeing sibling share precious moments and love each other is just the best thing… Mel

  7. Awww how lovely, it reminds me of the relationship between my boys, my eldest son was always great at looking after his little brother and my youngest idolises his big brother as much now as when they were little. I think it’s a great idea for you to allow time for your middle child to be the big brother for a change :-D

  8. Time waits for no mum (@no_mum)

    How lovely. It must be wonderful watching your boys blossom as older brothers before your very eyes and seeing the love between your children. We just have one child at the moment but I hope that he will get the opportunity to be an older sibling and can’t wait to see how he takes to the role! #magicmoments

  9. Awww how cute!… I remember when I found out my 3rd was going to be a girl. My 2 sons were like “OH NO!!! we don’t want a sister!”… Now shes here there are besotted by her… I also fear for those future Boyfriends lol
    #PoCoLo x

  10. What a beautiful image! One of the most special things about my childhood was having an older brother I worshipped, adored and had such a fun time with despite the age difference. This post reminded me how important the ‘big brother’ role is.

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