Growing up I was the middle child. There are mixed views on whether the order of birth impacts on the individual, but my question is: How can it not? Especially when 80% of what we do is learned behaviour.
Research says that middle children are:
- More likely to take risks.
- More Independent.
- Better at articulating our view.
- Have healthier and happier social relationships.
- Are self-motivated.
- Have realistic expectations.
- Are responsible.
- Are more empathic.
- Value justice rather than money.
- Good at working in teams.
- Have strong leadership skills.
- Are more patient.
- Have less ego.
- Are more likely to succeed in making changes to the world.
- Do better in positions of great power and responsibility.
- Are happy not being the centre of attention.
- Are determined and driven to succeed.
I can’t help but wonder if this research was undertaken by middle children to make themselves sound good. Listing the above on a CV would definitely lead to someone landing an interview.
Take more independent as an example. I’d say I’m independent, but no more so that either of my brothers.
But the are some benefits to being the middle child. Being the middle child I’ve always had hand-me-downs. As a young child hand-me-downs were just part of growing up. But as an adult one of my brothers is into designer clothes. He doesn’t buy clothes often, but when he does I get his hand-me-downs.
Another benefit is that I always have big brothers who have got my back and are a source of support. I always have older brothers to ask for advice and some of their advice has truly been invaluable.
Being the middle child has helped me to be more extroverted in social situations. It has helped me to learn how to work a room and make people laugh. This is probably to ensure that as a middle child I don’t get forgotten about. Even if this means being slightly dramatic at times to get my voice heard. I also make good use of pauses and silence to get the impact that I want in social situations.
There’s a freedom to being the middle child that comes from parents having no expectations, unlike expectations parents often put on the first born. This means that we middle children can do what we like, within reason and usually without disappointing our parents.
Being the middle child has helped me to be better at negotiation, compromise and sharing. This is due to having to consider others growing up.
Are you a middle child? What are the benefits you’ve found from your birth order? Leave a comment below.