In their 1992 song "Brother for Sale," Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen sing about the struggle of being girls with a brother. Sometimes brothers get on your nerves, which is why the Olsen twins want to sell their brother for fifty cents. Yet other times, a brother can be your best friend, which is why MK&A ultimately decide to keep their big bro. As a woman who grew up with two younger brothers, the Olsen twins' music video really summed up my feelings about my siblings as a child.
Whether he takes on the role of teaser, confidant or protector, a brother can offer valuable insight into the way men operate and always have his sister's best interests in mind.
Here are 17 reasons why being a woman with brothers rocks.
1. You have an endless supply of baggy sweatshirts and oversized polos to borrow.
2. When you want a guy's perspective on anything from an essay you wrote to a hairstyle you've been thinking about, you know that your brother will be honest with you.
3. Even though you don’t need a guy to lift your heavy carry-on bag into the airplane storage compartment, when you travel with your brother, it’s nice to make him do it for you.
4. You learn to laugh at yourself early on, because you can always count on your brothers to make fun of you.
5. You have an excellent source of advice about boys -- whether you want to date them or not.
6. Having a brother can helpfully blur gender roles if you play with and enjoy some of the same things. You know that "boy" toys and "girl" toys are silly, since you grew up loving trucks and Easy Bake Ovens in equal measure.
7. Having a brother provides early opportunities to practice explaining feminist viewpoints to men. And hopefully you'll learn that it's possible to make a guy understand feminism. If he wants you to have the same opportunities that he's been afforded, he probably will get why all women should have the same access as men do.
8. After a shitty breakup, your brother is a shoulder to cry on. When you're done crying, he'll be there to remind you how awesome you are and finally tell you everything he always hated about your ex.
9. You know that when your brother gives you a compliment, he's being genuine. Brothers are big on no bullshit zone.
10. Your relationship forces you to become good at negotiation and bargaining. For example, you might agree to watch that Manchester United soccer with him, if he then watches "Pippi Longstocking" with you.
11. You learn that dudes can love rom-coms just as much as women. He'll probably be thankful that he has a judgment-free way to watch "Notting Hill" and "The Holiday."
12. You may end up developing crushes on half of your brother's friends. And as you grow up, those friends can become like brothers as well.
13. You learn early on that men are just as emotional as women are. Who hasn't seen their brother cry? #AllTheTears
14. He is the only person you let make fun of your awkward stage...because you can make fun of his right back. Going through adolescence under the same roof is a true bonding experience.
15. You know that you'll always have someone around who can fully understand your family's quirks, and commiserate when your parents get on your nerves.
16. You have a built-in partner-in-crime -- and a great target for practical jokes.
17. You’ll always be your brother’s number one girl, even when he doesn’t admit it.