Filipino student in US shares delight of sisterhood in joyful video

January 3, 2019 - 6:24 PM
Siblings Interaksyon
The strong bond of two Filipina sisters tugged heartstrings on social media. (Pixabay)

A video compilation from a Filipino student living in the United States showing her younger sister running toward her and hugging her has touched the hearts of Filipinos on social media.

Shenica Bernal first posted about it on Twitter and Facebook on December 20. Bernal said in the caption: “Please enjoy this compilation of my little sister every time I picked her up from school last year.”

People in the comments noted how the child shouts “ate” with delight every time she runs toward her sister.

Please enjoy this compilation of my little sister every time I picked her up from school last year😩❤️

Posted by Shenica Bernal on Thursday, December 20, 2018

The video clip had since been re-posted in Reddit and 9GAG and captured the hearts of the audience there.

Ate! from Philippines

Based on her profile, Bernal is a nursing student at the Wayne State University in the state of Michigan in the United States.

There are a total of 4,037,564 Filipinos in the US, according to the latest American Community Survey of the US Census Bureau.

Meanwhile, Filipino-Americans make up the third largest group of residents of mixed Asian and American descent.

The bond between siblings

There had been studies that show how the power of sibling bond is stronger than that of the parents and their children.

Jeffrey Kluger, a senior editor and science writer of Time magazine, released a book about it in 2011 titled “The Sibling Effect: What Bonds among Brothers and Sisters Reveal about Us” which explores the psychological impact of sibling relationships to people.

Kluger explained in the book how the bond of siblings affect the person’s upbringing more than others.

“From the time we’re born, our brothers and sisters are our collaborators and co-conspirators, our role models and our cautionary tales. They are our scolds, protectors, goads, tormentors, playmates, counselors, sources of envy, objects of pride,” he said.

Compared to friends, spouses and other people, Kluger said that a person’s brother or sister is also usually his constant companion growing up.

In a study about sibling bond among children and adolescents, researchers found that the characteristics of a sibling relationship change in time and in place. Its influence is also greater than that of other relationships a person will have in the future.

“Most research on direct sibling influences is grounded in developmental or social learning models, suggesting that, by virtue of their everyday involvement, siblings can promote positive development as well as adjustment problems,” the researchers said.

In the Philippines, siblings are also valued in the household where younger children are taught use the words “ate” to refer to an older sister and “kuya” to an older brother.

Filipino author Amaryllis Torres wrote in an article titled “Kinship and Social Relations in Filipino Culture” that there are terms used to denote how family members relate to one another.

“Distinct terms are available, in the language to denote such relationships, point to the primacy of this structural unit in the lives of the people,” Torres said.

She also found that while generation identifies a person’s place in the family structure, the seniority principle determines the duties or rights of younger and older members.

“Seniority categorizes generations into younger and older members. For example, it defines the reciprocal rights and obligations between older and younger siblings,” Torres said.

It is common in Filipino families for the eldest sibling to take care of his or her younger siblings during times of hardship.