We are all born with ‘blood relatives’. People who are our ‘family’. Parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins. We call these people our ‘blood relatives’ because we share the same DNA. 50% with our parents and siblings, 25% with our grandparents, aunts and uncles, and 12.5% with our cousins. In simple terms, people like to say we share the same blood.
We’ve all heard the very famous proverb ‘blood is thicker than water‘, which is used to imply that family relationships/ties are always stronger than with friends or people we know. This proverb has been around since the year 1180, but personally I disagree.
Yes, I know scientifically blood is denser than water. But I totally disagree with the meaning behind the phrase. In some very rare cases, yes people have stronger relationships with their family. But in most cases the meaning of family is lost. I’m not talking about the normal family arguements that occur between people, everybody argues or disagrees at some point. What I’m talking about is family who are selfish. People who use you, abuse you.
I see too many families these days who don’t speak to each other, for no reason. I see many people ignored by their ‘so called family’, again for no reason. I see people making the effort for years to try and stay close to their family only to be rebuffed, pushed away, ignored. I see many families who live in the same house, yet don’t speak to each other for days/weeks on end.
I also see some families where some members are always in contact. They are always there for each other and help each other out. They support and cherish each other. They also tell it how it is, and give advice even if it’s something you don’t want to hear, because bottom line is they care.
A lot of people say the only way for families to get together and talk these days are at weddings and funerals. Unfortunately for some people, if their families are anything like mine – family won’t get together even for those things.
As a Muslim I was taught as a child that family is No. 1. That you put family first. That you help family. That you care for family. That you give family time. Now I’ve grown up I’ve seen my family do the opposite. Not all of them but the majority. And I’m fully for the whole ‘practise what you preach’. Don’t teach children that family is No. 1 if you’re only going to take the sense of family away from them. Prepare them for reality, don’t set them up for an uncalled for rejection and disappointment.
So, ladies and gentlemen. I personally will NOT teach my children that ‘blood is thicker than water‘. I will teach them my own saying, my own belief, my own discovery.
Some blood is thicker than stone, and some blood is thinner than air.
I hope you all learn from it too. I’m not saying don’t be close to your family, but don’t give your all to people who won’t give you any of them. Don’t force yourself on people who want nothing to do with you. Be that family or friends.
And remember one thing.
You can make your own family. Family doesn’t have to be in relation to ‘blood relatives’. Families are people who share commitment to a mutual relationship. Your friends can be more family to you than your ‘blood relatives’. You don’t have to share the same blood to be there, to care, to feel like family.