My hubby had a very difficult childhood. Vastly different than mine. He basically raised himself and has been on his own since he was a pre-teen. For all the reasons it happened, it is what it is and in my opinion he is an amazing man for it. And I think for this reason he clings to his family. He is the guy that keeps in touch with ALL the family members. Whether it's a phone call every 6 months or an email now and then, they all know that they can count on him to keep the relationship going. He is an amazing friend and remains your friend for years to come. He's always the guys saying, "Man we were best friends. I haven't talked to him in 10 years but we are buds." He nurtures his relationships in a way that only someone that has truly been alone can.
Hubby grew up with an older brother and sister. For the most part he has been very close to his sister. She is adoring and he is protective. Their relationship has always been solid and I know that he would do anything for her. The same can't be said for his relationship with his brother. I think when they were younger they had somewhat of a relationship but F (older brother) faced a lot of issues. I'm not going to spew his secrets out of the internets but suffice it to say that he has battled some things for 20 years or so that have caused a deep rift between him and both my hubby and his sister. I think they all lost out but I think my hubby suffered because despite having a brother he never HAD a brother. You should always be able to count on your parents and your siblings and when you can't it hurtful and disappointing. And just as sons need fathers I think brothers need brothers.
But all of that changed about 6 months ago. F started attending church regularly, drastically cleaned up his life and is basically not the person I first met when I met my hubby. He's grounded and solid, reliable and generally a different person. We are talking a COMPLETE turn around. It's been amazing.
But what is more amazing and what touches me more than anything is watching my hubby form a solid relationship with his big brother. They spend more time together now than they have in 20 years. They fish together, they hang out, they talk on the phone, texting each other like schoolgirls. It's like they have just met each other again for the first time.
Last night the family came over for dinner and a little hanging out. F showed up first and he and hubby were messing around on the computer. I was in the other room listening to them laugh and talk. They were writing an email and F was dictating and Hubby was typing. I was cracking up. They were brothers. Just hanging out. Enjoying each other's company. Picking at each other and having a good time. And as I threw dinner together and I listened to them in the other room my heart smiled. I want my hubby to have everything he deserves and getting back his big brother is a step in the right direction.