It is not flesh and blood but the heart which makes us fathers and sons. ~Johann Schiller
Everyone is familiar with the saying “blood is thicker than water”. I wonder if it’s really true and to what context it might be. I’ve been reading different things people have posted on Facebook, blogs, etc… in relation to that.
I honestly don’t know of anyone that would love an adoptive child any less than their biological child. I also have friends who are the adoptive children of parents who have biological children as well. These friends of mine were not any less loved than their siblings. So, in this respect I disagree with the saying. I also know that if I found that either of my children had been switched at birth (Come on, folks, this has happened in a few instances.), that I would not love them any less. Love is a binding of hearts not blood.
I also know that most of us feel free to complain about our siblings, but how dare anyone else say anything bad about them. They belong to us. They are “ours” , right? However, how far would we actually stand behind them? Would we choose blood over moral and ethical issues? I suppose it would depend on the situation. I think it is possible to love a person and not the actions of a person. Most of us have people related to us that make choices we are not proud of, but just because we might not like their lifestyles does not mean we don’t love them. I think it is possible to support a person but not stand behind their conduct. I suppose it can be a very fine line at times.
Most of us have dear friends or family friends, as we call them, that mean as much and sometimes more than family members. Another saying comes to mind. “You can choose your friends but not your family.” I know I have friends that I love as much as my siblings. I suppose the love I do have for my family doesn’t come from blood bonds but from a connections of growing together through the years. I don’t love them simply because I have to but because I choose to.
I would say it all comes down to how people are raised, but I don’t think that is true either. Unfortunately, the news everyday shows us examples of people who don’t care for life or relationship. They hurt their own children, parents, siblings, friends, and complete strangers. I think it comes down to the heart of the matter…how good someone is inside. Do they have love in them or not? When you do, you extend it to others. When you don’t, it is shown by your callous behavior toward others.
I conclude that I do not agree that blood is thicker than water. We might put up with more from family members than we would from other people, but that is probably because the relationship is deeper. We know them on an entirely different level. These are people that possibly if we were not related, we would not choose to friend them. Though I strongly feel that family relationships are important, I feel intimate relationships must be built on respect, honesty, love, and compassion. So I suppose the deciding factor would be the situation in question and whether the blood or the water held all those attributes.