The Student News Site of East Lansing High School


The Student News Site of East Lansing High School


The Student News Site of East Lansing High School


It runs in the family

Sibling pairs share sports, influencing relationship together
Photo by Nina VanOtteren
Jackson Gast (10) raced to complete his 100 meter backstroke at the boys swim and dive Capital Area Athletic Conference meet on Feb. 23.

Siblings exist to shape who you are through the activities you do together. Playing a sport with your sibling is an excellent way to develop a closer relationship with one another. Not only will they push you to become better, but they will be there while you grow and improve

Brothers Jack Drouare (12) and Reed Drouare (12) have been playing hockey together for 15 years. Their sport has brought them closer to one another, and understand each other on a deeper level. Their relationship reached a turning point when they got to high school. Coming into ELHS was a new experience and change in their lives, but one thing stayed consistent: they still had each other.

“We were definitely closer in high school because we were playing with all new people,” Jack said, “Already knowing someone on the team made it more fun.”

Although they are now closer because of their shared love for playing hockey they have become increasingly competitive as the years have gone by. Playing on a high school level has allowed them to not only push themselves but to push each other, both fueled by the desire to be better than the other.

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“It’s been lots of competition because we’ve been competing against each other our whole lives,” Reed said. “It’s made us better at sports and really bond over it together.”

On the other hand, some siblings aren’t nearly as competitive and play their sports together simply out of fun and enjoyment. Sisters Kareema Aato (11) and Rahma Aato (11) have been playing tennis together for the past three years but have yet to show each other their competitive side.

For them, tennis didn’t necessarily bring them closer together because they had already grown used to doing things as a pair. Playing tennis served as an extension to the time they were already spending with each other, and gave them the opportunity to bond over something different.

“It’s fun to play together even though we’re always together,” Rahma said. “I’m not sick of her yet.”

Siblings can even bond when they are not necessarily playing their sport together. Despite Swimming in different seasons based on gender, siblings Isabella Gast (10) and Jackson Gasts’ (10) competitiveness is not hindered. Since they don’t swim together, the competition between them generally occurs outside of the pool. 

“It’s nice to play together because we can talk about things at home,” Isabella said. “Except then he tries to tell me that I’m wrong.”

Doing swim together wasn’t their first time sharing a sport–that would be when they did cross country in middle school. Unlike swimming, they did not continue participating together as Isabella chose to swim when she got to high school, leaving Jackson to run on his own. Ultimately, this served as a good separation in the relationship, allowing them some time and space away from each other after doing everything together for so long.

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About the Contributors
Cielo Gutierrez
Cielo Gutierrez, Staff Writer
Cielo Gutierrez is in the class of 2026 and is a staff writer and photographer for Portrait.  This is her first year on staff as a sophomore.  Cielo's favorite thing about journalism is how different people's voices can be heard and how their stories can be shared.   When she's not in the newsroom, Cielo plays the piano when she gets a burst of inspiration, it's very soothing for her.
Nina VanOtteren
Nina VanOtteren, Photography Editor
Nina is a member of the Class of 2025 and is a Photography Editor for Portrait. This is her second year on staff as a junior. Nina’s favorite thing about journalism is being able to inform others about things going on through different perspectives. When she is not in the newsroom, Nina loves skiing, spending time with friends and playing soccer.

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