Why it’s fun to annoy your sibling

By , on April 10, 2019

I can’t be the only one who finds myself grinning while reading this title (though I’m the one who wrote it) and actually agrees to what it’s saying, right?

Somehow, I get the idea that siblings were born to annoy each other. I remember my mom often telling me that back when I was still a baby (an age that I could not speak or even walk yet), my brother who was older by five years was caught in one of his KSP episodes a.k.a. kulangot sa pader (booger on the wall). Guess what my smart brother said? He just pointed fingers that I did the thing. I was still a baby then, but now that I think about it, that is annoyingly funny.

I could not blame him though. As the youngest of two, I was often asked as a kid if I wanted a younger child to come after me. To my surprise in my growing years, they quoted me saying that I plan to poke the eye of my to-be-younger sibling if ever they existed.

I guess siblings are just really made to get in each other’s nerves and under each other’s skins.

After all, whether you are the eldest child, the middle, the youngest, or the other twin, nothing beats the satisfaction of seeing the face your sibling makes when their nose wrinkles, their eyebrows meet, or their lips tremble (out of annoyance or anger). In my case, I get a pretty big (my brother’s face is big) glare and a ‘friendly’ (or loving) curse from his mouth, but nonetheless, the delight that this exudes is undeniable.

But really, why is it fun to annoy your sibling?

Just in time to celebrate National Siblings Day this April 10, Philippine Canadian Inquirer (PCI) presents some answers to the very question.


Limitless limit

Unleashing the clown in you means not only tickling the ‘laugh boxes’ of people but also pushing the right buttons and avoiding the landmines.

“It’s fun sometimes to annoy your siblings because you know him so much that you have an idea whether your jokes will be over the boundary or not,” says Jordan, 23, who claims to have a close relationship with his 28-year-old brother.

Surely, being born from the same womb automatically forms the blood relationship, but true closeness is not always born from simply being siblings or physically being near for that matter. Splitting housework, watching movies, eating out, or simply bonding together is what draws these two’s good relationship. For Jordan, however, their closeness is also what gives him the license to make fun of his brother “a million times.”

“You know which jokes to pull off just to make him annoyed, then laugh later or make him angry later,” he chips in, clearly enjoying the subject.

The 23-year-old shares that one of his favorite jokes is ‘pressuring’ his brother when they are paying to the cashier and there is a lineup of people behind them. Counting 10, 9, 8, as his hands scramble in his pocket to get that wallet will definitely get that “Don’t” face of his brother while laughing.

Funny or irritating, depending on which perspective we are speaking from, Jordan sees this teasing as something that breaks the tension between them.

Louise, also 23, has the same sentiments. She says that the teasing and satisfaction is similar with that of friends, but “pinagkaiba lang kapag friends ‘yung inaasar, ‘di mawawala for me ‘yung worry na baka I went too far. Kapag sa kapatid naman, wala ‘yung feeling na ‘yun (the difference is that when I tease my friends, for me, the feeling that I might have went too far does not disappear. But with my siblings, there is no such feeling.)”


Sadistic sister

Which is better to sit back and relax… or sit back as you watch your sibling fail to give you a good comeback after you pull off a well-calculated and extremely annoyingly funny prank or joke?

I’d, of course, say the latter, but looks like I’m not the only one; enter Anne, 22, who is the “household ate” of her younger brothers Anthony and Andrei.

Being responsible as the eldest of the three is one of the aspects that makes up Anne’s life, and while this is a big duty for her in the family, this also grants her the perk of “having the upper hand on feeding” what she calls as the “older sibling ego.”

Before the interview, she had doubts about being “qualified” to air out her answer, but reading the topic of this article, she felt like the pieces just fit.

Annoying her siblings is fun “because it’s fun to see them getting riled up and looking like they can’t say anything since I would tease them more.” Brand Anne a sadist, but wait ‘til you hear (or read) her “favorite” part, “They try to retaliate… but fail! Haha.”

This may already be a feat for her (and other elder or eldest siblings around the world), but the real fun only starts when she starts to loop in her parents in their joke of the day. Good luck Anthony and Andrei!

Louise, who is the ate of four relates as well.

“It’s fun kasi nakakatawa makita ‘yung reaksyon nila kapag nabibwisit sila (because it is funny to see their reactions when they get annoyed)!” she shares.


Words as swords

Competition is almost in every part of the world, and it exists in the household. But I am not talking about sibling rivalry though.

“It’s fun [to annoy them] siguro kasi ginagawa din nila ‘yun, ang saya lang kapag nakakaganti ka (because they also annoy you back, and it is really fun when you can take revenge),” says Tuten, the only guy and the youngest of four.

While pagpasensyahan mo na si bunso (be kind to the youngest sibling) is perhaps a natural line from the heads of the family, Tuten may actually be the subject of the jokes and pranks of his older sisters, rather than the protected one.

From eating his saved and hidden snacks, to rummaging through his phone, to influencing their parents to scold him all of a sudden, and to sharing to their barangay whatever fails or embarrassment he has done – Tuten has had a taste of the different tactics of his sisters just to annoy every bit of him.

The most notable of all would probably be, “May time na natutulog ako, pinalo ako ng hanger without any reason, ganon lang talaga siya (One time, I was sleeping, then suddenly, she hits me with a hanger without any reason, she is just like that).”

While Tuten says that he really got annoyed when that happened, he says that their encounters are still funny and that he still finds a way to get back to his sisters. In their household, despite the occasional strictness, their sibling war probably lightens the four corners of their home.


Just for laughs

As cliché as it sounds, they do say that laughter is the best medicine, but perhaps this is not only health-related? In a way, laughter can cure loneliness, tension, and even anger, depending on the person. Thinking of it this way, it could be that the laughter one can produce just by simply grinding the gears of your ‘wombmates’ can ease different negativities. But what am I saying? Maybe annoying your siblings is just fun because it simply is, period.

In fact, if you type the legendary question “Why it’s fun to annoy your siblings” on Google, rather than getting answers, what you’d get are articles listing down the steps to actually do the thing. (This means you are not alone.)

In the words of my 28-year-old brother, Jaca, though, “It helps me fulfill my role as a brother if I annoy my sister, [it] gives her the attention that she needs.”

I, of course, wholeheartedly disagree with the above statement, but I still have to tolerate his existence because he is still my brother no matter what happens. There may never be a concrete answer to the question. So we will probably just have to annoy each other until we’re both in our old ages, just to fulfill that role that we were born to do. At least he’ll get older faster.