Ranch Reflections are articles written by LRHS students and staff who want to share their experiences, thoughts, and concerns. This is a great opportunity for Mustangs to branch out beyond traditional news stories.  This edition features an LRHS sophomore’s experiences as a big sister/babysitter.

The author’s little brother – a sometimes mixed blessing

Sofia Cretu – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Having younger siblings can be one of life’s most interesting experiences. Being the older sibling brings loads of responsibility and can be very demanding.

Many older siblings are stuck being responsible for their younger brothers and sisters. Being in this position can be particularly challenging, especially for high school students who have other struggles to deal with.

Having to watch and care for your siblings takes time out of the day and becomes an obstacle for clubs, school, hanging out, work, or even just alone time.

Not being able to have that freedom can become overwhelming and angering. Repeatedly missing out on something that everyone else gets to be a part of because you have to watch your sibling(s) can lead people to form resentment.

Anyone with younger siblings can appreciate stories such as the after-school babysitting sessions until parents finish work.  Students cannot rest, or use your time for something they want to do.

Calling friends and having to cancel or reschedule plans, or having to do homework distracted, are all things sibling babysitters face.

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The reasons I had to watch my brother were understandable, and another alternative is not always an option because many people cannot get babysitters and depend on someone in their family for childcare.

I hated having that extra responsibility because I wanted to be out and about, but I could not.

It was upsetting. No matter how much I love my little brother, sometimes all I wanted was to not deal with that.

Having that responsibility may have been aggravating, but it was also a learning experience. I gained experience with children and taking care of them, and I learned skills that will help me with my own children later in life.