Who's on first

That's me in the back behind my mom.
I  recently read an article  in Psychology Today  about birth order and personality. I'm the second born in a family of six, all girls. This is important.  Had I been born a boy - I would have the personality of the first born even in my family of six because I would be the first and only male. (would that make me an only child too?)

As children, first-borns strive to emulate and please their parents, and often dominate and care for their younger siblings. Parents tend to delegate responsibility to firstborns, who identify with their parents and with authority. Therefore, relative to their younger siblings, first-born children tend to be more extraverted and confident, more conformist and conservative, more conscientious and academically inclined, and more dominant and authoritarian.

First-borns are likely to be least comfortable in situations that require radical change or innovation, in self-managing teams where roles and status are fluid and ambiguous, or in expatriate assignments where they need to adapt to a foreign culture.

Additionally, firstborns may be uncomfortable when they are required to work in subordinate roles.

Is this true first- borns?

 Because second-born children enter a family system in which the first-born niche is already taken, their incentive is to be different and to create their own niche.

Second-born children, relative to their older siblings, tend to be more flexible and open to new experiences, more empathic and altruistic, more creative and innovative, and more rebellious, liberal and interested in foreign cultures, and more concerned with justice and fairness.

Because as children they have less to lose by taking risks, second borns also tend to be more comfortable taking risks.

How about it seconds?

Middle siblings, who lack the dominance of firstborns and the higher degree of attention given to last borns are in a precarious situation and therefore must learn to be diplomatic and political in order to get their way. Relative to their siblings, middle children tend to be more diplomatic and politically skilled, and good at negotiation and compromise.

What do ya say Sis #4,#5?

Only children tend to resemble firstborns, and are achievement-oriented and motivated to please their parents.

Only- borns?

What I know for sure, there are no pictures of me as a baby. It appears I was five at birth. There is, however a giant  portrait of the first born as a baby. Talk to me people.

I must confess, I was born at a very early age.
Groucho Marx


  1. Such an interesting post!! The picture is so cute! I love old pictures!

    Have a fab day!


  2. hmmm. very interesting. i am the third kid out of four.

    for my 40th birthday my mom gave me a photo album that contained pictures of me. it was a little sparse, but i LOATHE having my picture taken. my mom also apologized to me and said she was sorry i was so ignored as a kid. i was like, "huh? really?" maybe i was. maybe i wasn't. i guess it is all water under the bridge at this point! :)

  3. I'm with you, I don't care for having my picture taken either. Perhaps that explains the lack of photos.

  4. Interesting isn't it? My situation is odd. I'm last born of 3 but I came 10 years after my brother and sister which kinda made me an only child. So I have the fucked up issues of the baby AND and only child. Hahahahaha!

  5. Jane,

    This is a very interesting post. I too, was the second born in a family of (9) children. Interestingly, my brother who is the oldest was born October 3, 1950 and I was born October 2, 1951. I really believe the roles of the oldest and second in line were reversed in my case. While my brother was very extroverted and fun-loving he was also very irresponsible and most if not all of the responsibility fell upon me.

    I remember in school, (it was a Catholic school) the oldest child in a family was designated to take home information and church envelopes but because my brother was so carefree and forgetful, they gave me the responsibility. LOL I remember carrying home 11 offering boxes two for my parents and one for each child!! So, I guess became the epitome of what he should have been but wasn't. The third born was a girl who was extremely hard headed and the rebel of the family. Weird huh?

    1. The article my sister#4 sent me gives examples for both male and female birth order. Interesting stuff I think!

  6. Wow, six children! I am an only, and I think what this says is pretty true about me.


    P.S. If you start watching Sons of Anarchy, I would definitely start from the beginning (steam on Netflix if you can). The story all build from season to season. It really kicks ass.

  7. This is so fun and interesting. I am the third of 4 girls and think that it's pretty accurate for me as the middle child, though I have the privilege of living in the same town as my parents, so I take on more of the coordinating family get togethers, etc. because of my proximity. Such fun to read!! Love the picture ~


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