Brothers: a tale of tolerance

Brotherly Love 1I‘d love to be writing about how my boys have bonded; how they adore each other; how CK dotes on BB; and how BB saves his best and biggest smiles for CK.

But right now, the best we have, is tolerance.

They tolerate each other.

We always knew it was going to be tough for CK when a new little person appeared on the scene. He was only two years and three months old when BB was born so still so very, very young. On top of that, with no family and few friends around, we’d always been three. No grandparents, godparents or aunts and uncles on hand to spoil him; we’d only ever had each other. There was no need for sharing.

And then we became four.

When CK first came to meet his new brother in the hospital, he was very sweet with him but far more excited about being able to go to the family room and help himself to drinks and biscuits. It wasn’t something we worried about. The hospital was a far more exciting place than a baby who didn’t do very much.

And then when we brought BB home, he slept for the majority of the day so there was very little interaction between the two of them. We saw a few flashes of jealously with CK laying claim to ‘my mama’ or ‘my papa’ if Paul and I spent too long holding BB but we also saw moments of complete and utter adoration with squeals of ‘I love baby BB’ and the tightest hugs ever.

Four months on and things are calm but I wouldn’t say that the boys are overwhelmed with brotherly love. Like I said, tolerance seems to be the best way to describe their relationship.

CK has told be that me doesn’t love BB. He likes him. But he doesn’t love him. He’s also suggested that BB might in fact prefer to live with his grandparents. BB told him that, apparently (yes, I really had to try very hard to stifle my laughter at that point).

BB, on the other hand, finds CK rather noisy and is also not entirely keen on being on the receiving end of his sloppy kisses. His eyes, although very young, scream ‘one day, I’m going to get you back for this’. I can see his fighting spirit already.

So these are our boys right now. They may not have the perfect relationship just yet. They may never have the perfect relationship. But they are both perfect in my eyes (and bringing a lot of laughter to our house).

Brotherly Love 2
*The top photograph was the best one I had of both of them for quite a while. BB doesn’t lie still unless he is sleeping and CK has a new ‘best smile’ which, as you can see, looks rather like a grimace. But every time I look at it, it really makes me laugh.

17 thoughts on “Brothers: a tale of tolerance

  1. It’s a little bit like this in my house too. There are 3.5 years between mine, and if it’s any consolation, that doesn’t make it any easier. Pip has had real moments of jealousy and feeling displaced over the past 5 months and we’ve had to try and deal with it as carefully as we can. I am thankful that EB is a chilled out little chap! I’m sure there are moments though when he is thinking ‘you just wait….’!

    I like your pics. I am finding it impossible to get a good one of the two of mine together. We also have the fixed smile grin from older too (although possibly grimace is a more accurate description!)

  2. It will grow into love in time… My two claim to hate each other, but if neither of us are around, they will comfort each other if the other is hurt or upset! At least they have their own Sophie Giraffe’s or there would be trouble!! :D

  3. Love the ‘grimace’ …. it’s always such a big adjustment for the first born (I’m a first and apparently I was a nightmare) BUT within time they will get more used to each other, and when you think about it BB (‘I want to live with my grandparents’ – that made me laugh) hasn’t been on this earth that long…. about four or five months now – hopefully (fingers crossed for you) CK will be more adjusted by the end of the year and when he is getting attention from the rest of your family too, as you will have moved by then. X

  4. Oh, bless you. It passes, I promise. Mine have almost the exact same age gap and the first six months was quite hard. The eldest was always being too rough and just didn’t like the baby taking our time and attention. I left them to it as much as possible and didn’t push MM to love his baby brother. I didn’t want him to be told off every time he went near the baby.
    As soon as he could get some positive reaction from him, like making him laugh, things started to change. Now my eldest is 4 and the ‘baby’ is nearly 2 and they adore each other. Of course there are still fallings out over toys and such and the eldest still wants to get on my lap if his brother is there, but generally they really love each other. They think the other is hilarious and my eldest has become a really caring older brother.

    Honestly it gets so much better

  5. Now you’ve got two children, I think that the love/tolerance/hate thing will swing like a pendulum, probably for the rest of their lives! I imagine that when they’re old enough, they will be best buddies and love each other deep down. It’s tough for the oldest one when a sibling comes along, a lot to contend with and huge changes. You’re doing brilliantly and your boys are so cute! x

  6. There’s the same age gap between my two brothers and while they’re so different, they get on well most of the time. But there’s two years difference between my husband and his sister and they never speak. There’s never been a falling out; they just don’t enter each Luther’s conscience.

  7. It’s hard, isn’t it? All they seen now is that they’ve possibly been replaced and your heart aches for them. I’m hoping that as BB gets bigger, CK will see him as a playmate rather than a rival. We’re still trying to limit the amount of time Paul spends holding BB but it’s hard. Who’d be parents, hey?!

  8. Ha, there’s been a few toys that we’ve had to buy two of and CK has taken to using a dummy occasionally. I know it’s a big change for him but hopefully they will grow to be fond of each other at some point over the next 18 years :-)

  9. I’m hoping that once BB starts to do a little more and they can interact, they’ll get on better. That, or they’ll just dislike each other even more. At times, it’s funny but I wouldn’t like it to be this permanently.

  10. I’m trying not to jump up too much when the toddler starts being a little too rough with the baby. He’s surprisingly lovely with him on occasions too. If the baby cries, he tells me to hurry up and feed him because he’s hungry. These moments make me hope that there’s going to be an easier/nicer future. They both have to learn to get along and share.

  11. Thank you, Suzanne. It must be so hard for the toddler. He had a comfortable place with Paul and I giving him all of our attention; now he must feel a little lost. Time and effort is needed, I imagine.

  12. Our two have a very similar age difference (21 months) our son wasn’t all that interested in his sister at first, then he would mostly play by himself and occasionally go and see her. Now though they generally play pretty nicely, as long as you discount the many many shouts of “MINE!” x

  13. I hadn’t thought forward to when they can both talk. The horror! And the noise! Argh ;-)

  14. Hi Rachel, thank you for stopping by my blog. We will have to visit the ice cream place in Cheshire when we head down that way thanks for the recommendation :)

    Lovely photo’s of your boys, I’m close in age with one of my brothers and we would always argue, now that we are older we are much closer.

    Kerry x

  15. You’ll love the ice cream factory and so will Amelia, I’m sure. I’m hoping the boys will get along where they’re able to do more together. I think it’s just because the situation is so new and currently CK is so much bigger. X

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