July 26 is National Aunt and Uncle Day, and although they aren’t as involved in our life as our mother and father, having a close relationship with an aunt or uncle is truly a gift. They often do a lot for us and have a major influence in our life, so we should take time to give them the recognition they deserve this month. Whether they’re considered our aunt or uncle by blood or by choice, here are four reasons why we’re lucky to have them in our life.
They’re always there to listen to our problems.
That special aunt or uncle is always there to listen to our problems, from normal growing pains to school issues and even to our own parents, and whatever we say stays with them. When there’s tension and we don’t know how to handle it, we can spill everything to our aunt or uncle and trust that they’ll have advice to give with our best interests in mind. They’re like our own personal therapists and actually want to hear about our problems, and they always know the right things to say, even when they insist it’s time to talk to our parents.
They spoil us.
Unlike parents, aunts and uncles can spoil us as much as they want without any consequences. No matter how old we are, we’ll always be their baby niece or nephew, and they’ll forever dote on us like we were their first-born. Whether it’s our birthday, Christmas, or just time for a regular summer visit, they never come empty-handed, but more importantly, they come ready to share their love.
Our accomplishments are their accomplishments.
A close aunt or uncle has a way of making us feel important in a way no one else does. Even if it’s the smallest accomplishment, they make us feel like we’ve won a Nobel Prize. We constantly hear, “Your aunt/uncle told me…” and we know it’s because they were bragging about us, especially when they feel like we’re not giving ourself enough credit.
They never let us forget how much they love us.
If there’s one thing we can never doubt, it’s the unconditional love of a devoted aunt and uncle. They’re like a second set of parents. An aunt or uncle can be both our mentor and our best friend, and the bond that exists is often unique and undeniable.
Whether we give them a call or send a sweet text or e-mail, we should never forget to tell them how thankful we are that they fill a role so special to us. To all the awesome aunts and uncles out there: You rock!
Katherine Truong is an editorial intern