Sibling Guilt

I had a strange moment today.  I’m not sure if it happened because I’m PMS-ing and feeling emotional or just because I’m having some guilty feelings about my life compared to my family’s.  I was driving my son to his well kid check up.  Shorty was sleeping in his carseat.  I started thinking about my brother and I started crying.

My brother and I are living polar opposite lives.  I won’t get in too much detail regarding his life because I don’t feel it’s my place to share his personal stuff without his permission but suffice it to say his life has had more drama, more lows, and more hardship than most people and he’s only 31 years old.  He’s caused many of his own problems through bad decisions and actions.  Then there are the things that have happened to him that can only be attributed to a dark, black cloud of the worst luck of anyone I know.  For example, several years ago he was involved in a minor fender bender.  He slid on a patch of road that gets notoriously slick in the rainy weather and bumped the car in front of him.  No big deal.  He and the elderly gentlemen he rear-ended pulled to the side of the road to check things out.  After seeing there was really no damage they were about to get back in their vehicles and drive off without getting the police or insurance companies involved.  Here’s when the black cloud of bad luck appeared.  At that exact moment another driver hit the same slick spot, lost control, and hit my brother and the other gentlemen as they were walking back to their cars.  My brother took the brunt of the collision as he was the person walking in front.  He had no health insurance so the damage he took to his knee and pelvis was never repaired properly.  He now suffers from frequent bouts of knee pain and swelling.  This accident also led to another severe life changing (for the worse) event that I will not discuss due to privacy.

At the moment my brother is one of the thousands in this country who is out of work.  His financial life is now in ruins and he can’t seem to turn it around.  He still has no health insurance or any other benefits.  I, on the other hand, am living a charmed life.  So, today as I drove to the pediatrician I started crying because I felt guilty that I seem to have all the luck and everything mostly going my way (unless you count the fertility thing but that’s another post) and my little brother just seems to have a shit life.

I feel like there is more I should be doing for him.  My brother never asks me for help.  He never begrudges me the life I have.  But I can’t help but feel like somehow it’s not fair that one of us has things so easy while the other struggles every day with every thing.  If there was something I could do to make all his problems go away I would.  The inequality in our lives makes me really sad.   I feel like a horrible person for having the life I do.

I’m not a church goer but I do believe in God and the power of prayer.  I’ve thought of calling one of the churches near me and asking to have my brother put on their prayer list.  So, for anyone out there who is reading, if you wouldn’t mind would you send some positive prayers, thoughts, vibes, or whatever you believe his way.  He could use all the positive energy he can get right now.

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One Response to Sibling Guilt

  1. I’m sorry for the guilt you feel here. But you can’t beat yourself up over the fact that some seem to have bigger problems than others. That’s not your fault, nor is there anything you can do to change that. Try and let go of the guilt, and just use those moments to appreciate what you have in your life – that’s the advice I need to give to myself, anyway.

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