Middle Child Syndrome

By Jen Monroe

People often laugh at the term or phrase “Middle child syndrome” but as a middle child myself, I can tell you this phenomenon really does exist! Even at the age of 30, I still find myself caught up in family squabbles simply thanks to the order we were born in. My sister is 14 months older than I am, and my brother is 17 months younger than I am… meaning I didn’t get much time at all as the baby of the family.  Often we associate being a middle child as a bad thing, (I know I do it!) I decided I would take a minute to reflect on all of the positive things that have come to my life thanks to being the middle child:

  • Always seeking attention led me to be more outgoing. While my brother and sister would pair up on amusement park rides, I would make a friend while waiting in line to ride with me instead of going it alone.  I wholeheartedly believe that forcing me to seek attention from outsiders helped me become the outgoing person I am today.
  • I excelled (at MOST) things I put my mind to growing up. My determination to do things (and do them well) stemmed from trying to outshine my sister’s big accomplishments.
  • My determination led me to become quite competitive with everything I touched. As I said before, I worked really hard at trying to beat out my sister at just about anything, which created some healthy (and sometimes not so healthy lol ) competition.
  • I’ve become a bit of a peacekeeper. When my brother and sister would get into fights, I learned how to listen to both sides of the argument and help them resolve the issue. Even today, I am the last person to jump into an argument, I’d much rather hear both sides of a story before speaking up.

I am sure there are a ton more reasons being the middle kid isn’t so bad after all. My goal now is to remember all these things when my family gets into another one of our hierarchy based arguments!

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