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Birth Order: The Boss of You

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The order in which you were born plays a huge part in what traits you gain during your childhood. Depending on whether or not you have younger siblings, older siblings, both, or no siblings at all, your personality can gain certain aspects that it wouldn't have gained if you were born in a different order. In this series of articles, personalities that people have that intertwine with their order of birth will be featured. Also, certain traits that people collect based on their birth order will be stated, and special birth orders that come depending on the amount of years between each child in the family's birth and what their gender is will be explained. If you've ever been interested in why you are the way you are, this series is for you.

Oldest Children

We all know the oldest child who thinks he/she is in charge of everything. He/she naturally wants to be first up to try something, and he/she instantly takes control on group projects. When you try to tell him/her otherwise, he/she snaps and begins to boss you around. You know that fighting back won't do any good, because he/she will probably win with an instant comeback or clever response.

You wonder, "What makes the first born mad?"

He/she is a born leader, and he/she seems to be fearless. But, he/she is not.

I am the only female child in my family, and I am the oldest. Since I was one year-old, I have had someone younger than me around. I haven't ever been able to develop traits as the youngest or only child in my family, and because of that, I have gained natural leadership skills. It is in my nature to want to control people or situations, and I find it difficult to do something I am capable of doing while someone is breathing down my neck and telling me their way to do it. (So frustrating . . .)

I have been helping my mom with my younger brothers since I can remember. I've been diapering, feeding, dressing, playing with, helping, and nurturing little kids while I was one myself. It is natural for me to start getting a mentality that I am a mini-adult and I can do anything all by myself. I like to be challenged and I am extremely competitive. I don't necessarily like seeing everything as a competition, but I find myself wanting to win at everything. Success isn't something I strive for - it is something do.

If you are a middle child, you are probably reading everything and thinking, "Well that sounds annoying." If you are the youngest child, I am almost certain you are rolling your eyes. But, if you are an only child or an oldest child like me, you are probably agreeing with the majority of what I have just said.

Oldest children are a lot alike, and that's what makes them clash so badly. If you were to put a group of first born children together and assign them to some outlandish task, chances are verbal fights would break out. Everyone would want to be in charge and find their own way to complete the task. This is why there can only be one oldest child per family, and for the sake of everyone, this is probably a good thing.

When it comes to marriage or other similar relationships, it isn't a good idea for two first born children to be together. Divorce or a tough break up will probably follow not too shortly. There are some cases when the marriage will work out, but when you put two people together under the same roof and expect them to split paying bills, child care, cleaning, cooking, and other activities, chances are the relationship won't work out. Like mentioned before, oldest children naturally want to be dominate in all they do, including relationships. Oldest children tend to butt heads with everyone at some point in time, but above all, they don't get along with themselves.

Oldest children have a tendency to become either a nurturer or an aggressive leader. I am mostly a nurturer, and find myself wanting to take care of people and help them out more than I want to rule over them. The other day, my second-youngest brother was having homework trouble. He had been sitting at our kitchen table for three hours, and he was in tears. Homework is not easy for him, and focusing on something that boring is nearly impossible. My mom and dad were completely fed up with his homework situation, and told him that now that he was a fifth grader, homework was in his hands. I saw him pulling out his hair over his spelling list, and instantly my nurturing side began to show.

Knowing it was time for me being the oldest to step in, I went over to him and helped him write down his words three times each. I colored the vowels red for him, and let him tackle the blue consonants. It was not a fun activity, and my beloved show, "The Vampire Diaries", had to sit on pause for half an hour.

The assignment that had taken him three hours to stress over was finished in forty minutes. I resumed my show and felt my own brain begin to fry. I'm not a saint, and I don't particularly find joy in helping my little brother with his spelling words. But, it is wired in my brain to help in situations like that.

At times, I find myself becoming more of an aggressive leader. When I'm stressed, I don't want to take the time to be nice to my younger siblings.

Thoughts like, "Why can't they do it right?" or "Why am I the only one helping out around here?" race through my mind.

Then, I find myself yelling or commanding my brothers help me out. Because both of my parents work, I have to babysit my brothers after school every day. While it isn't a horribly difficult task, sometimes it can get stressful. When homework help is needed, dishes need washing, and the computer breaks down, things go nuts. Last Thursday, I had a bit of a meltdown and started yelling. I told my younger brother by a year to stop being selfish and to help me out. I yelled at my second-youngest brother to stop being irresponsible with his work, and long story short, I made my seven-year-old brother cry.

It wasn't a good day for any of us.

You may be thinking, "Where did your nurturing go?"

Truth is, I don't really know. When I'm feeling extra frustrated with the way things are going, I find my temper getting worse. It is natural for an oldest born to feel stressed with little things. We aren't known for being easy-going, and it is clear why. Oldest children often have a lot of responsibilities that middle and youngest children don't realize. When problems arise and the oldest child is in charge, it is easy for them to go from being in a good mood to a nasty one in a minute. I try to work on my temper, but it is natural for me to be like this.

In every birth order there are flaws, but some of them aren't going to be fixed. With positive traits come the negative, and they've just got to be pardoned. Oldest children would be much better off if they could have a little bottle of chill pills in their back pocket, but we don't. If you have an older brother or sister who gets on your nerves for being bossy, please cut him or her some slack. We stress out over little things that aren't important, and we feel pressured to be perfect and set great examples for the younger kids. We may act out or yell at you, but we aren't upset necessarily at you, but rather at the fact things didn't go as planned.

Just remember, oldest children don't want to murder you for messing up - they just want things to be as perfect as they can be for Mom and Dad. Wanting to lead isn't a blessing, but it's a feeling we've got. There's a first time for everything, and we oldests usually get to tackle them before others. We'll probably fail, and it will be the end of the world. But, we'll get over it.

Then tell you to do it too.

Author's Note: Sources: "The New Birth Order" book by: Dr. Devin Leman


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