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Those That Give and Those That Take

Updated on April 21, 2015

The Gift Of Giving

I grew up with five brothers and one sister. Both of my parents were always in the picture because they stuck it out through thick and thin. Being one of seven children wasn't always the easiest, but I can tell you that there was never a dull moment. Although we grew up in the same household, under the same rules, we all couldn't be more different when it comes to personalities and how we view the world around us.

The question that I've always asked and never been able to fully answer is "why is it that some of my siblings always feel the need to be given handouts as if they are owed, while others of us are always so willing to give?" The joy that I personally get from seeing someone receive a gift that I was able to get for them because I took the time to listen to what they liked is unmatched. Giving isn't always something physical. I'm always lending my ear and time to those around me when they need someone to lean on, even if only for a quick minute.

Then there are some of my siblings... everyone knows the type. As you hand them one object they're reaching towards you with the other to get more. They take until you can no longer give and then you become unnecessary to their daily life. In all honesty, when someone surprises me with a gift, I get sort of uneasy. I never know how to truly thank them and feel wrong for accepting anything. I never grew up with the ability to have much, so anything that I received as a "hand-me-down" was even a big deal to me.

Is there something that happens to a person; one drastic event that changes their outlook on life and how they view what it is important? Some of the things that my siblings say seem so far out in left field that I have a hard time believing that grew up under the same roof as I did. One thing I noticed in my family dynamics is that my oldest brother feels the greatest sense of entitlement than any of the rest of the family. Did childhood envy of newborn babies taking more and more of mom's attention harvest some deep-seated hatred that carried over into adulthood? I mean, he was the first born, so maybe he feels as though we are lesser and there owe him for coming after him?

I wonder if others have seen this to be true in their lives? Did you undergo an event that caused you to change how you felt about giving vs. receiving?


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