Guest Post: Being Blood-Related Doesn’t Preclude a Family Bond

Today’s post is brought to you by Jenny Ellis, who contacted me a few weeks ago with a request to write something for Relative Evolutions.  After some discussion regarding content, Jenny agreed to write a piece discussing the bonds that can exist between family members who aren’t related by blood.  As Stepmother’s Day approaches, I thought the timing was perfect.  Here’s Jenny…

They say that blood is thicker than water, indicating that blood relations trump any and all non-blood related relations. And it’s easy to see why a lot of people may think that, may even tout it as an unwavering fact. On the surface, being bound to one another by blood represents the deepest type of relationship you can have with someone. You share their DNA. However a blood bond isn’t always the have-all, end-all when it comes to relationships. In actuality it depends solely on the person.

Adopted children can be just as close to their parents

Just because someone is adopted doesn’t automatically make them less likely to be close to their adoptive parents as a natural-born sibling. Adopted children can form such a thick bond with their adoptive parents that it trumps a bond with their blood-related parents. For instance, I have a friend who was adopted by her step-father after he married her mother. Their marriage didn’t last, however the bond he formed with his adopted daughter did, and to this day she is still closer to him than she is to her birth mother. Blood doesn’t define everything.

Blood-related siblings can break off all ties

In the aforementioned marriage between my friend’s mother and step-father they also had a son together. That son is her step-father’s flesh and blood, and yet he has cut off all ties with his family. He doesn’t speak to dad, he rarely speaks to his mom, and he has no contact with my friend (his half-sister). While his half-sister chose a relationship with her adoptive father, he chose a relationship with no one, proving that a blood relationship doesn’t always mean an actual relationship.

Non-blood related siblings can be close

After her step-father remarried he had two kids with his new wife. They have zero blood relation to my friend, however all three of them are constantly in contact and have no trouble calling each other “brother” and “sister”. The lack of a blood relationship doesn’t impact their feelings toward one another as siblings at all. None of the siblings have any relationship with their aforementioned half-brother. Blood isn’t the only type of bond.

While blood may run thick with some families, it doesn’t run thick with all of them. You can have a close knit family with no blood relations at all, and those families can be closer than others that are untainted with divorce, adopted children, step-children or half-children. As colloquial of a phrase that “blood is thicker than water” is, it’s just that – a phrase. Blood doesn’t define everything.

Jenny Ellis is a freelance writer, and a regular contributor for aupair jobs. She welcomes your comments at:


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