While there are lots of factors influencing a person's personality, birth order seems to be more of a science than what your "sign" is.
I am the second born in a family of four children. We are all very widely spaced (except for the last two). My older brother and I would qualify as either "only" or "first born," because there are so many years between us, and we both had younger siblings. If you read the characteristics of a first-born child--I'm dead ringer. My husband is a classic middle child even though he is the second born in a family of four, just like me. He and his siblings were spaced very closely together.
Do your children fit the classic patterns of birth order?
It is assumed that first born or only children have a lot more pressure on them to please their parents and therefore tend to be high achievers and work harder in school. As you imagine your first born or only child and laugh (like I'm doing now) consider this: of the first twenty-three astronauts sent into outer space, twenty-one were first-borns or only children.
Only or First Born Characteristics
Abide by the Rules
Middle children are usually great at negotiating. They don't have their parents all to themselves and have another, older, bigger person to contend with--negotiating is important. Middle children generally go outside the family and have many friends to confide in rather than their family. They may also be active in sports or extracurricular activities.
Middle Child Characteristics
Last born children are generally outgoing, and love to put on a good show. Ask your most vivacious friend where they fall in their family birth order. Many times a last born child will be more absent minded since there is always a big brother or sister to bail them out.
Last Born Characteristics
Sense of Humor
Birth order is not an exact science but can be beneficial when trying to decide why your children act so differently. Why is one child incredibly obedient and the other not? Why does the one child always get their homework done and another seems to sail by without a care in the world? For some more resources on the subject, consider the following list of websites or books.
© Claudine M. Jalajas 2003