Both my sisters got married relatively young; my oldest sister was 24 when she tied the knot with her college sweetheart, while the other was only 22 when she had her big day. As the youngest (and still happily single) sister, I’ve noticed a lot of … changes to the dynamic of our relationship since they found “the one.” Here are seven:
1. I compare her timeline to my life.
Wait, when she was my age, she was already engaged and had a down payment on her venue? I can barely remember to pack myself a sandwich for work; how was she planning a 200-person event in which she was committing her life to another human being?!
2. I have learned from her wedding mistakes.
Once you’ve planned a wedding with your sister, you will inevitably have a few ideas of what you do and don’t want, by default. Should I ever be pressured enough by my mother to throw an obnoxious wedding fête, I will know which florist (hers), makeup artist (hers) and catering (not hers) I want to book. It only took one dancing near-mishap at her wedding for me to swear off strapless bridesmaid dresses for my future big day (if my future partner and I end up choosing to have one).
3. There are added politics to Christmas.
Wait, if I give my sister a $20 gift and her husband a $20 gift, but they give me one $20 gift together, how is that fair? The fact is, it isn’t, but I just kind of have to suck it up and deal. I take solace in the fact that I got the boots I wanted from my mom while my sister and her husband always get something domestic like pots and pans because it has to be for both of them. Also, my sister’s marriage means that decades-long traditions are inevitably altered to accommodate her husband’s family’s plan. Not that it’s all bad: I get to replace watching "White Christmas" with taking a nap, since it’s no longer an official family event.
4. She is somewhat jealous of my life, or at least lives vicariously through me (sometimes).
My sister was probably more excited than I was when I finally hooked up with that hottie I worked with and obsessed over in college. She loves her husband, of course, but she also loves hearing about my crazy dating stories, too. My sister is the best audience for these types of stories, because she can’t one-up me with “Well I just hooked up with a man that could pass as Mark Ruffalo’s twin.” I will always have the latest piece of hook-up gossip.
But it only took one (or two) awkward moments to realize that every sordid detail I share with my sister, my brother-in-law will know, too, since he is likely next to her while she’s on the phone.
5. I am (sometimes) jealous of her, too.
Even though I’m busy doing the single-girl thing, I occasionally get jealous of my sister, too. Especially when she tells me the sweet thing her husband did for her. Or about their romantic couples trip to Europe. Or when I notice how well her husband bartends at their house parties. Whatever it is, I have, more than once, thought, “Damn, I kind of want a partner to share these things with me, too.”
6. I want them to have babies, like, right now.
Unlike my mother, who is barred from asking for grandbabies lest she be labeled the overbearing mother, I have no such limitations. As the future aunt, I feel free to pressure away, folks, because I definitely need a niece or nephew in my life to spoil, like, ASAP. Even though I absolutely cannot imagine popping out an infant anytime in the foreseeable future, my sister obviously should have at least three by now, because look at those adorable outfits at Baby Gap.
7. There’s nothing better than gaining family members.
Siblings-in-law are the best. My brother-in-law will always give the best advice when it comes to guys, and he has my best interests at heart. He will always carry my suitcase when I visit my sister and he backs me up when I tell her she needs to throw out her crazy one-shouldered top from 2005.
He is a gift, and I appreciate him. Not only is he another ally at my crazy family Christmas, but he also loves my sister as much as I do, which is pretty spectacular.