It's funny the hold siblings have over you. Whether you're the most mature, sensible, level-headed adult in the world, or not so much, there is a certain magnetic pull they possess that turns you right back into the bratty, virus of a child you once were.
The feeling of being hard done by is never fully washed away, the role of victim is an ongoing one, and the intense yearning to get one up on the other is perpetually within you until the end of time.
Here are 22 things that are only acceptable with brothers and sisters – and would result in you being royally excommunicated if you subjected anyone else to them.
1. Tell on them
So simple, so effective.
Have they done something shit? Or better still, something to make them look like they've been brought up badly? Rat them out all day. Or at least pretend to, make them sweat.
The prospect of your parents knowing what you're up to is truly terrifying, to humans of any age.
2. Block the TV when they’re annoying you
A fool proof trick that is available to anyone with arms from ages 1-100.
And while we're on the subject of television...
3. Bring the remote to the kitchen with you so they can't change on the break
Disclaimer: O'Neill's sized pockets are needed to pull this off like the spy you are.
4. Leave them with a wretched relative to rot in conversation
This is particularly effective when at a wedding, funeral or general sacrament celebration as they've gotten all dressed up (and pepped up) to chat to the youngsters for the day.
So you and your sibling do the good deed, sit beside them and chat shite for a few moments to see their face light up – then, just when your older sister starts up a conversation about the Army, she fucks off and leaves you in the dark, never to be seen again.
5. Hit them really bloody hard
Only acceptable when you have the ability to sprint right out of there IMMEDIATELY.
6. Let them know how shite they look
As a sibling, it's your job to tell them when they look fat, tired and simply dreadful. Us Irish siblings have it down to a fine art.
Whether it's in old school photos, on a shopping excursion, or a trip home from the hairdressers, your opinion is honest, valid and completely necessary – and never, ever solicited.
7. Lick your food so they can’t have it
So mid way through dinner you realise you need the loo, but you don't trust your brother as far as you can throw him – and you don't think you could even lift him.
So what do you do? Lick your food of course. Problem solved.
8. Eat said licked food because you’re like fuck it, same spit
Whether you’re driving to your wedding or driving to the shop, Shotgun is never off the cards.
One must always be ready.
10. Call them downstairs to close the door
So you were watching a movie and your younger sister decided to scoot up the stairs to take selfies or something else equally as lame, and she flings the door open behind her, without a care in the world. Has she no shame?
It is now your job to scream bloody murder so she will come back downstairs and undo what she has done. You're only teaching her a lesson.
11. Steal their seat
On your feet, lose your seat. Deal with it.
12. Rob their change
If they give you a tenner to run to the shop and pick up the paper, consider the change yours.
You do have to pay for labour, you know.
13. Nab the shower just as they said they were going to have one
And consequently robbing all the hot water, the last of the shampoo and leaving the bathroom in a hoop.
14. Blame them mercilessly
In what other world could you put the blame on another human being so effortlessly, so carelessly, so smugly?
— She Ratchet (@SheeeRatchet) July 19, 2015
15. Be horrendously offended when people say you look alike
Despite the fact you're both made up of the same stuff, wear the same clothes and have the same face.
16. And be horrendously offended when people say they're good-looking
17. Rob everything they love, adore and have worked hard for
Clothes, bikes, food, first-born child. You name it.
— Lauren ???? (@LozzaLou_XX) July 19, 2015
18. Tell them they're adopted/a mistake/the least favourite
You will never, EVER be allowed to even CONSIDER telling someone else that they're adopted – but with your siblings, it's fair game, and often encouraged.
As stated, being a sibling means that you're in constant competition and you've got to let them realise that, whatever it takes.
19. Embrace the constant feeling of schadenfreude
Schadenfreude is pleasure derived by someone from another person's misfortune.
In other words: the act of being a sibling.
20. Convince them to do something for a photo because it will 'look cool'
And then using that photo for blackmail for ever and ever, amen.
Bonus points if it's in a family snap.
21. Never use words
And if they do, they're very rarely full words, and even more rarely full sentences.
'Shup', 'giz', 'stop'.
22. And finally, for Generation Emigration – be a little fucker on Skype
This includes anything from holding up the cat so you don't have to talk, mooning them, making them wake up in the middle of the night to Skype you only to tell them you've spat in their bed, and – of course – telling them you don't miss them even though you'd give up all of your worldly possessions just to hang out with them in the flesh for 10 minutes.
Remember, being a sibling means never showing your feelings, so be a good lad and give them the finger every once in a while to show them you love them.