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As the older sister to two younger brothers, I am automatically the next parent figure in their lives.
Most siblings have only a couple of years separating them, but then there are some families who have large age gaps between children. My family is one of them: I’m 20 and my brothers Aidil Naim and Adam Zikri, are 14 and 10 respectively.
For most of my childhood, I had to “grow up” faster than my siblings and be the “responsible one” because I was the oldest.
It’s not that I do not love the idea of being a sister, it’s just something that you can never truly prepare yourself for.
There were days where I had to cancel plans with my friends to stay home to take care of my brothers because my parents were at work. Or prepare meals when my parents did not have the time to cook.
The journey has its ups and downs, but at the end of the day, growing up with siblings is a blessing… at times.
Being the oldest does have its perks though. Especially if there is an age gap bigger than 10 years, older siblings have a bigger influence on the younger ones than you’d think: I’m old though to stop them from making the same mistakes as I once made!
A video that recently went viral on Tik Tok is a perfect example of how this bond between siblings can be so wholesome.
Brothers’ day out
@andryieo Spent my time with lil brother yesterday, it was RAWRSOME! 🦖#fyp #sgtiktok #DidYouKnow #asitwas ♬ As It Was – Harry Styles
This video posted on May 5 by 21-year-old Muhammad Andri Darwisy quickly went viral with 21,000 views and 3,000 likes.
The video shows Andri taking his little five-year-old brother Muhammad Mateen out for the day.
The wholesome video follows the older brother as he picks out Mateen’s clothes, takes him to a mall to “see the dinosaurs”, buys a toy for him, and ends it with a cotton candy treat.
The little boy’s smile was infectious throughout the video. It was heartwarming to see a pair of brothers bonding so well together.
One user, azizil, commented: “I’m proud of you for being the best bro for him.”
The 16-year age gap didn’t go unnoticed either. Another user, Mar Hud, commented: “ Wahh, the age gap,” to which Andri replied: “I know right!”.
“He loves dinosaurs, so when I saw that they had an exhibition (at West Mall), I took him out,” Andri tells The Pride.
To add to the cuteness factor, Andri says that the two brothers love to wear matching outfits — that day the theme was blue.
They went to the dinosaur exhibition at West Mall, which is conveniently near their home at Jurong. After that, Andri took Mateen to pick out a present at the toy shop.
Mateen’s little skips of happiness made the video even more adorable.
Andri says that when he found out about the exhibition on Facebook, he immediately thought of his brother, who adores dinosaurs.
That day, it was just the two of them at home. So, what better time to have a little brother bonding session, laughs Andri.
“It’s not the first time we went out together, I would take him to the movies, especially any new animated movies. We would be the first to watch it,” explains Andri.
He seldom takes videos of their outings and was surprised that the first time he decided to post one on TikTok, it went viral.
The start of it all
In all, there are four children in Andri’s family. He’s the second oldest, with a brother, Muhammad Danish Shasley, 24, serving his national service and an 18-year-old sister, Nur Qistina Qusyaira, who is still studying.
When we ask him why he is so close to Mateen, he shares that it was because his youngest brother is the baby of the family.
“Everyone in my family is always supportive of each other. When I was singing at the Singapore Expo recently, they all came to support me,” says Andri.
Andri is an aspiring singer and actor who is producing a single, he says.
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His younger brother loves watching him in shows and competitions, says Andri.
“Mateen is also interested in the music industry, specifically rap, but he’s a shy boy.”
Seeing his older brother performing has inspired Mateen, and Andri jokes that if his brother wants to pursue a career in the music industry, he would encourage him to pursue it overseas as he would have a higher chance of breaking into the music scene.
His parents, who saw Andri’s video post, were delighted to see the bond between their children. It is heartwarming for them to know that their family is so close knit, and that Andri is making the effort to teach his younger brother.
“I have to set the example for Mateen, being the older sibling,” shares Andri with a laugh.
“At home, he only listens to me. Sometimes, my mum would have to call me to speak to Mateen!”
It’s fun being the oldest
Inspired by Andri, I decided to ask my brothers if they ever thought of me as their third parent. They replied that I sometimes act like their second mother without realising it.
I mean, I get it. Who else is going to scold them when they leave the toilet seat up or when they forget to wash their plates?
I guess for me, it’s a normal instinct to be the one they could count on any time they are in need. I’ve felt that way ever since I was six and a baby boy who looked a little like me was thrust in my arms.
At the end of the day, siblings are worth it.
But hey, I’m a cool sister too. Who else is going to cover for my brothers when they sneak out to watch a movie when they are supposed to still be in school?
Mum, if you are reading this, it’s just a hypothetical situation!