UNITED STATES—For those Americans who have siblings, you understand that you squabble with your siblings it’s a passage of rite. However, at the same time you can have disagreements or arguments that are explosive, boil your blood and become volatile as hell. That is where things stand with my younger brother. I swear as kids we were thick as thieves, but as adults we can barely be in the same room with each other without almost being at each other’s throats.

What is the tension? Why don’t we get along? If I’m being honest, I could not give you the answer. I really wish I could, but I don’t have it. I do believe there is a bit of jealously because I went to college, he did not, I’m actively working, he is not, and I take accountability for my actions, he does not. When I think of my younger brother, the thing that immediately comes to mind is drama. My brother is absolute drama. He feeds off of it, and I wouldn’t say he likes to be the center of attention, but he likes to stage or cause a scene.

He’s like that dog that constantly barks, but will never bite and you just want to yell, “Shut up.” Why? What is the reason for all that hoopla? It just gets underneath my skin, and that is his intended goal. He knows he can get underneath my skin, and he does it expertly in a way that leaves me rattled and I absolutely hate that to the core. We just had a tiff last week and it was over the dumbest thing, just the absolute dumbest thing.

Here’s the thing I barely hear from my brother because anytime I do he wants something. He only contacts or communicates with me when something is wrong. I never hear from him when everything is going well and I don’t like that. That means I’m only good to you when you want something and that makes me feel disposable and that is not a good feeling. Especially when you’re talking about someone who did so much for you while we were kids and young adults, but now, I’m like the regular John Doe on the street? Get outta here.

My brother has that notion that he is this tough guy and he can kick anyone’s a**. It is annoying because I know a lot of people like that who tend to talk more than they can back it up. I do have a temper, but I am very good and I mean very good at keeping that temper in check. I tell people all the time you truly don’t want to see me mad because if you do it might surprise you. I don’t suppress my anger; I voice it in my writing, creative writing to be exact because it is therapeutic.

We have never gotten physical with one another, but my other siblings have and it’s a direct result of their drinking. I don’t consume alcohol; I rarely have in my life. It is just something that is not part of my life and I’m ok with it. However, with my brother and a few other siblings of mine, they drink and they drink heavily. I’m ok saying it my brother is indeed an alcoholic and he’s knows it, but refuses to seek any treatment for it. He thinks he has it under control, but if every time I have an encounter with you, you’re barely able to keep your eyes open and you reek of alcohol, there is a problem.

You have an addiction and you need to seek treatment for it, because I’m not going to sit and entertain the notion. People tend to say my brother and I are like gasoline and fire at this point in our lives, we just don’t mesh and my focus has turned to I can love you from a distance. I’m juggling too much to deal with the drama, unnecessary drama to say the least. I don’t need it; I don’t want it so you can keep it.

It is extremely sad when you have siblings who cannot have conversations without being at each other’s throats. There is nothing good about that America you’re blood, you’re supposed to be bonding not arguing about silly, stupid stuff when you have life and death situations that are rearing its ugly head. I’ve always heard the saying that sibling rivalry is just a term that we toss out, but the reality of the situation is many of us have situations where we just don’t get along with our siblings, no matter how hard we try.

That’s sad America, I want to do better, but at the same time, I’ve done all that I can, it’s up to my brother to meet me half-way because at this point, I’ve wiped my hands clean and that is something I never thought I would do, let alone say.