A Threefold Cord Cannot Easily Be Broken!
The Holy Bible has a saying which I have seen proved true of the years. In Ecclesiastes 4:12, the Bible tells us that “though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken”. Appropriately enough, today I’m going to give three examples of pulling together. The first two examples are siblings who found that they were stronger when working together. The third is a group of three friends who chose to be stronger together.
The Strength of a Sibling Bond
We have noticed many times over the years the power of a sibling bond. Usually we see it in two ways:
- Siblings who are widows/widowers pulling together to better cope with the challenges of daily life; and
- Siblings working together to get the best result for Momma.
Widow(er) Siblings Who are Stronger when Working Together
This one never ceases to amaze me. It usually happens almost naturally after the death of their spouses. For the sake of our conversations we will assume that it’s two women – although this seems to be true the most often in real life. Let’s illustrate a typical scenario in the following.
Sandra and Susan are two sisters who have recently suffered the deaths of their husbands. They live in different cities, about an hour apart, but have found that their phone conversations are much more frequent. These sisters help each other figure out the many challenges of life that confronts them on a daily basis. They have even found a little coffee shop about equidistant between the two cities where they meet every Saturday to talk in person.
Sandra said, “It’s just easier with the two of us – we don’t have to do it alone”. Susan added, ” I know that Sandra has my back”. It’s good to have someone that you can trust who truly cares about you.
These two sisters not only talk to each other on a regular basis, but they help with the implementation of daily tasks. As caregivers, they have realized how much stronger they are when they work together! When it’s something big, like an important doctor’s appointment, one drives to their sister’s city to offer support. This is the power of siblings pulling together to make life a little easier for both.
Siblings Pulling Together for Momma
This is the one that we discuss in our writings most often because we see the power of this bond on almost a daily basis. The scenario is as follows:
Joseph, Jolene and Jacqueline (they refer to themselves as the 3 J’s) are siblings who have the following three things in common:
They love each other and talk weekly.
All three love their Mom and talk to her a couple of times a week.
They all live (at least) 1,000 miles away from each other.
Their Mom has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and the kids are wondering what to do next. The real power of this situation is the words describing #1 above – they love each other and talk weekly. This is pretty rare for grown siblings who live a distance from each other and Mom.
The 3 J’s immediately begin the fact finding necessary to conduct a Mom Centered Family Meeting. They discuss their findings on the phone and set a date when they will all fly home and meet. Mom knows they are coming and the purpose of the meeting. She is relieved that her kids are working with her to craft and implement a solution that will be in the best interest of the whole family.
The Power of Friends Being Stronger Together
This one is more rare, but we still see it on a fairly regular basis. In many instances, it happens after the death of the spouse of a group of good friends. Here’s a scenario:
Bob, Brenda and Bernie have all lost their spouses recently. They are friends who live in the same town and have known each other for years. Feeling the emptiness that occurs after the death of a spouse and the need for community, this group of friends started going to the local McDonalds for coffee a couple of times a week. Their kids all live out of town so this informal group is “their new family”.
Even though this informal group just started to meet for coffee, the bond has grown stronger from those initial meetings. The friends start talking about life problems and start working together to craft good solutions. They feel that they can trust each other and begin to rely on each other for insight and potential solutions. It helps a lot to just get together and talk.
A Strong Bond
The bond of friendship can even be powerful with younger folks. This weekend, Cindy & I were in a local bookstore where we picked up a copy of a magazine entitled: Okra, Real Southern Culture. In it was an article about a business created by a group of three friends who came together (after many years apart) to create a small business – Commonhealth Elderberry. After pursuing other careers in different states, this group came back home and now work together to create small batch elderberry and elderberry blends. If you can find the magazine, this is an interesting read. Their website is okramagazine.com.
The Power of Three – a cord of three strands cannot easily be broken!
Best wishes to you as you work with your siblings or friends to make life’s navigation a little easier!
Were YOU Shocked By A Loved One’s Decline?
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Ok. That might come off a little fast, but you can trust us. We want to help! We fully understand the stress and turmoil that you are facing as Family Caregiver – including personal experiences with burnout.
In our time as caregivers, we have amassed a wealth of knowledge that we desire to pass on. We understand the emotions involved while making necessary decisions. Likewise, we have met many professional caregivers, as well as other family members who were thrust as Family Caregiver. All caregivers have shared the same advice – Join a community! There is nothing more cleansing for our situation than knowing that we are not alone!
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Being an Adult Kid who is helping mom as she is declining can be a scary, frustrating and lonely place lacking stability. You feel like you are solely responsible for solving Mom’s problems while managing yours. Some occasional input and a community you can trust would help, especially when facing burnout! This is a way that all of us can be working together as caregivers!
Many others that you may personally know are having to figure it all out by themselves. Most of them have no community. Please take a minute and do them a favor. Copy this link ~> help.mom/cc <~ and send it to them in an email or private message. They can click on it and subscribe to our newsletter for free.
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Nothing herein is intended to be legal advice. These are just things that we have seen various families try when struggling with this difficult issue. Each situation is unique and requires specific professional assistance to resolve. Please contact your local medical or legal advisors to seek assistance in appropriately resolving this issue for your family.