I was born an only child (with two step brothers every second weekend), and when I started my own family I was honestly wondered how you could love another child as much as the first – was this even possible? Until the day my second, third and fourth son was born, I could not imagine ever having enough love to go around – but of course a mother’s heart holds an abundance of love to give to each child unconditionally. (thank goodness!)
With the arrival of each child, I was very interested in seeing their development of personality type, traits, likes and dislikes. How is it possible that each child can be SO different? I have often wondered if their family position has influenced how they have grown up.
I know I have definitely grown into the role of being a ‘mum’ more and more with each child and have become far more relaxed and resilient over the years (oh, the first child by far was my biggest learning curve!!). I remember with my first son I would wash and sterilise his dummy each time it touched the floor or some other unsterilised surface!! (Mind you I was suffering post natal depression at the time – but that is a topic for whole other post!!) By my fourth child, a quick wipe on my jeans was all that was required before giving it back (if he was lucky!)
So, has the birth order of my children impacted their personality?
My eldest son is my ‘little worrier’ and having very high expectations of himself and others, he is a perfectionist and not a risk taker. My second son is a lot more easy-going, he is a bit of a dare-devil (he becomes the guinea pig in many of the boys games and is always up for the challenge) My third son is very stubborn, very loud, and can be an angel one minute and a shocker the next! He has quick wit (even as a youngster) and really truly believes he is as old as his brothers! My fourth son (only one year in) is far more relaxed, chilled out than any of the others at this age, doing lots of things for himself, gaining confidence from his brother’s company but not relying on them…
A few years ago (I think I had just had baby number 3) I read a book by Michael Grose called “Why first borns rule the world, and last borns want to change it”. I was absolutely fascinated with what I read. Each of my boys (at that point) were described to the finest of details! There was some very interesting information about having all boys and all girls families, multiple births, only child, (which I could relate to as my family position) single parent, blended families and other sibling combinations. A very interesting book, explaining that there are both benefits and drawbacks in each order of birth, relevant to our children and our own order placement.
Do you think the birth order of your children equates to their personalities? Is your first-born more tentative? nervous? Whilst this topic is not scientific nor set in stone I find it very fascinating and love discussing this with people I meet.
Having said all of this I am pleased my boys are all so different, imagine how boring it would be if they were all the same?