We were a bunch of trouble makers at a very strict school (junior high) with uniforms and all. We were cornered by school, parents and the society, we thought. We felt more like a real family the more we were persecuted. One day after getting suspended together three of us sat at a park that we used to hang out and smoked cigarettes. We chugged down a bunch of vodka, smoked cigarettes and all three of us decided to slice our arms with a razor blade with tears in our eyes and we did it: we took turns cutting the top of our arms… about one and a half inch long clean cut with a brand new blade. It didn’t hurt much maybe because we were all so drunk. I saw the white part underneath the dermis layer then blood drops starting to form on either side of the cut, puddle up and drip. We rubbed our wounds against each other’s, lit smokes then got light headed and passed out (we were going to run away together that evening).
Some adults found us passed out on a park bench with our arms dangling with blood dripping from the tip of our fingers. It was a blur but they took us to a nearby drug store. There the pharmacy person cleaned and bandaged our cuts, gave us drinks and snacks then let us go. We went back to the park to smoke more cigarettes and sober up then we all went home. I told my Mom some kid sitting in front in the classroom turned around with a blade in his hand and kinda sliced my arm; she wasn’t too concerned or paid much attention at all. I still have the scar. I don’t know where the other kids are now.
When I was little (born '89), I was told by my mom many, many times to never do Blood Brothers with someone. To this day I’ve never encountered somebody who has (or admitted that they have) done it*, and since I became old enough to question my mom, often wondered if it was some sort of weird urban legend.
Granted, I don’t make a habit of asking random acquaintances whether or not they’ve swapped blood with someone.
I was in grammar school, and did it with a neighbor, and then a cousin. Pricked the tip of a finger with a safety pin or something. No knives, no gushing blood. It wasn’t a problem back then, but when my daughter came to me and said a classmate had approached her (in about '89), I made sure she knew not to do it and I spoke to the principal.
My best friend pointed out one day when we both had sores we’d picked the scabs off that we should be blood sisters. We pushed our little bloody descabbed booboos together and that was that.
I imagine we were around nine or ten.
Perhaps this particular rite is fading…as a young boy, it seemed quite common in my limited experience. We played cowboy and indians, army vs (take your choice, but we generally picked the Germans) Altogether an age of innocence.
Back in public school (1990 ish era, Virginia) we were specifically warned that “blood brothers” rituals could spread disease. I probably first heard of the practice in a health related lesson - it wasn’t something that seemed common. Now, Best Friends Forever/ Bosom Friends type relationships with cutesy matching jewelry (but no shared bloodletting) was normal.
I did. It was either 3rd or 4th grade; this would have been about 1976-77. My best friend and I used a piece of obsidian to make a cut in our index fingers. We pressed them together for about 30 minutes and that was that. Blood Brothers.