“There are, indeed, various evidences that the tie of blood-covenanting is reckoned, in the East, even a closer tie than that of natural descent; that a “friend” by this tie is nearer and is dearer, “sticketh closer,” than a “brother” by birth. We, in the West, are accustomed to say, that “blood is thicker than water”; but the Arabs have the idea that blood is thicker than milk, than a mother’s milk. With them, any two children nourished at the same breast are called “milk-brothers,”  or “sucking brothers”;  and the tie between such is very strong.” (H.C. Trumbull (). THE BLOOD COVENANT. Simplicissimus Book Farm. https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-blood-covenant/id1046756412).
The abused phrase “Blood is thicker than water” are often derived from a bevy of writers like Germanic Authors Heinrich der Glîchezære in his 13th century piece “Reynard the Fox; a piece about a fox tricking animals including a wolf but escapes their punishment by healing the lion to overcome his adversaries; only to poison him too. “ouch hoer ich sagen, das sippe blůt von wazzere niht verdirbet" (lines 265-266). In English it reads, "I also hear it said, kin-blood is not spoiled by water." Although, it is believed the intention is to state that “Blood if thicker than water”, It is a rough translation but it seems the “blood” reference may fall from Grimbert.
The story holds variations but carrits the same storyline. The King Lion summons a court of animals to find a list of crimes against Reynard; and every animal discusses the trouble of him except the cat and the badger. Reynard tricks the bear to getting honey which lead him to get beat. The cat who held no complaint must retrieve Reynard and is tricked into a barn with a trap meant for him; the cat is caught in Reynard’s trap and beaten. Grimbert the badger, the fox’s nephew convinced him to come to the court He confesses before the king about finding gold that he can not retrieve because he is banned by the church; to lift the ban he wanted to request a repeal to the Pope and requested the Ram and Hare to join him. He claims to wish his wife farewell and beheads the hare and placed it into a bag as a message to the king; but the Ram never checked the bag. The animals are angry at the tribulations Reynard causes but his nephew the badger still requests a fair trial for him. Grimbert rushes to warn his uncle and Reynard chooses to go. Reynard’s story in true detail covers his crimes of murder, stealing, rape and abuse.
It seems like regardless of Reynard’s behavior, Grimbert continues the request for a “fair” trial and empathy from the individuals they have wronged; perhaps it is the concept of a non-consequentialist that appeals to people to stand by family regardless of their behavior. Perhaps it is the individual need to be forgiven, to be selfish, to be harmful; people feel owed to do without repercussions for their actions. Does that mean the people wronged are required to tolerate and keep toxic Reynards’ in their life because they are family? When does the suffering individual heal and move forward? When does forgiveness include the person doing the forgiving?
The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb. When an individual is consciously choosing toxic behavior and wants to drag everyone around them down; when abandonment is near or when those suffering are no longer willing to comply the immediate poisonous phrase is “Blood is thicker than water”. It becomes a meaningless phrase under poisonous circumstances indicating the person choosing to separate themselves from something hurtful to them; there is something “wrong” with them. It is always the thief that feels robbed.
Why does “Blood is thicker than water” become the mask to invalidate a survivor’s abuse? The toxic individual hides behind the fabrication and utilizes it as an excuse. “You have to forgive me because we’re blood”. “I’m your mother”. “I’m your father”. “I’m your brother”. “I’m your sister”. “I’m your uncle”. “I’m your aunt”. “I’m your grandfather”. “I’m your grandmother” “I’m your daughter”. “I’m your son”. “I’m your wife”. “I’m your husband.” Behavior is not excused or more acceptable because they are related. In fact, due to blood is the very reason why boundaries should be respected even more so.
There is no encouragement to abandon family but if it is necessary to provide a safe haven for yourself; there is nothing wrong with that. Sharing blood is not an invitation to make someone; someone else’s property. People are not objects. It should be acknowledged that the unhealthy Reynard Fox in our lives are not owed boundaries to be crossed. Respect is not a difficult action or decision.
Family does not own anyone and never the right to abuse ayone. The victim deserves to be protected instead of being silenced and expected to tolerate it. The victim is owed their voice and met with love for being strong enough to speak. Should the victim forgive? I would encourage it because it heals the victim more than the other; the one has to accept their actions are wrong forgive themselves. Do not invalidate their experiences to appease the ego of a parent or child or uncle or spouse.
Each individual is owed their respect and boundaries to be respected; if that can not be complied then they owe right to walk away from it. They own right to create a bond like the blood of the covenant to be thicker than the water in the womb. Those relationships become golden because the survivor understands they do not deserve to be mistreated and choose individuals who respect and love them because they do; not expecting to give love and respect In exchange to be disrespected or abused.