Do you ever think about birth order and the roles and personality traits that accompany your childrens chronological entrance into the world? Does birth order play a role in determining the dynamics of your family?
When I had three children, which was for the first 6 years of my parenting, I had 3 very distinct birth orders. I had the eldest, the middle child and the baby. I don’t think my eldest is a typical eldest child. His visual disability may play a part in this, but so far he is not particularly conventionaI and conservative and nor is he one that needs constant approval! And on further reading of first born traits I am not so sure he is perfectionistic or sensitive to criticism.
I then had a middle child who acted more like a first born in some ways due to the older child’s visual disability and hence adopted more of a caretaker type role. He knew from the age of one he would have to go and find the ball that his brother had kicked into the bushes. He knew as a toddler that he couldn’t come back from somewhere, even somewhere familiar, without his brother in case he got lost. The middle child became the most independent, compassionate and capable and quickly worked out his role in the family dynamics.
And then there was the baby of the family. Traits similar to most youngest children, he was more of a rule-breaker, willing to push the limits but all the while more of a “mummy’s boy”. He probably wont like me saying that! The youngest usually doesn’t feel the need to compete with the other two, but rather they are confident to walk their own path, usually with an abundance of ideas, but not necessarily following them all through. [Read more...]