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Does the order of birth of your newborn influence their personality?

Getting to Know Siblings of Three

As a middle sibling with two sisters, I’ve always been fascinated with the concept of ‘middle child syndrome’.  Does it exist?  And does the order you’re born in influence your life’s journey?   So, was it being a middle child that made me different, or would I have always been different?  I truly believe that the way I am and how my life has developed, is definitely influenced by being the middle child.  For me, I’m very different to my two sisters, both in personality and looks.  I would probably say I that I’ve been more adventurous in relationships and careers, and had a few more bumps in the road than them, but it has certainly shaped who I am today.  

It’s not always true, but when I see siblings of three in my lovely newborn photography studio at Cams Hall, most times the eldest and youngest have similar personalities and look more alike.  The middle one tends to be different.

Nurture Versus Nature?

Having said that, the order that you’re born influences your journey in life.  I also believe that our true personality is already within us at birth.  This can be influenced by nurture, how we’re expected to behave etc., but some of our traits are there even before we’re born.  Would I have had the same journey in life if I’d been born the eldest or youngest?  It’s the whole nurture versus nature debate.

Recently, I’ve been listening to an audio book on The Order of Birth by Kevin Leman.  The book states:

‘Do you realise that of the first twenty-three astronauts in space, twenty-one were firstborns and the other two were the only child in their family? Are you aware that many successful entrepreneurs are middle children? Is it any surprise that most comedians are the youngest child in their family? It’s all about birth order.’

A Mum’s Point of View

Tillie Reggie & Maddie

I asked one of my recent mummies that brought her third daughter to the studio, what her thoughts were on having three children:

“Tillie (5 years) and Reggie’s (3 years) personalities are very different.  In the last few years they have definitely developed their own identity, even though they do everything together from being so close in age.

Tillie was always timid and took a while to warm up to even family friends, whereas Reggie was always the loud one, very happy to be left with anybody and smiley to everyone, even strangers walking by.  Tillie has always been the sensible one and very content, she will happily play by herself or occupy herself with a puzzle, colouring or playdough.  Reggie always wanted you to sit with him whilst doing anything.  However, as they have grown up they play together so much, Tillie does act like the mum (boss) sometimes but they play together so nicely. 

When Maddie arrived, Tillie and Reggie were so excited.  Honestly their smiles on their faces, whenever we saw anyone, they would say it was their baby sister and that they love her!

Reggie has always loved babies, so from the very beginning he would sit for hours and hold her, kissing her and just generally interested in her.  Tillie would cuddle Maddie but she doesn’t like milk or certain smells, so if Maddie was to be sick or dribble, Tillie would instantly go ‘yuck’ and walk away.  Now Maddie is five months old, Tillie interacts with her so much, cuddling, singing, dancing and just generally playing with her. Maddie is one spoilt little baby!

Up until now, I thought Maddie and Reggie would have the closer relationship as Tillie now attends school Monday to Friday, so Reggie was at home a lot more to play with Maddie etc.  But due to the circumstances of the Coronavirus pandemic, Tillie has also been at home, so now they all have an amazing relationship, and the first thing Tillie and Reggie do when they wake up is come and say good morning to Maddie and make her laugh! 

Tillie is definitely the big sister who wants to sing and help Maddie learn, whereas Reggie is the crazy big brother who jumps around, makes her jump and laugh.

When Maddie was first born she was the spitting image of Reggie, but yes, the more she has grown into her little features and her character is coming through, she actually reminds me a lot of Tillie.  And when looking back at baby photos she is very similar to Tillie. 

Tillie reminds us a lot of her grandma. When she was a baby, Tanya had a lot of involvement with her, so some things she says or does, I say, ‘you’re just like grandma’. 

When Reggie came along, I was more at home, so he became a mummy’s boy and wasn’t keen on Will as he was the person who always had to tell him off.  But character-wise, he is very much like his Dad Will in both looks and personality; they definitely wind each other up.

Maddie we’re still not sure.  She already is very cheeky and wants to be heard amongst her older brother and sister. So we shall see!

I love them all so much and I can’t wait to see their growing relationship get stronger and stronger.  I really feel Reggie is/will be very protective of his big and little sister.”

I just love the feedback from Sarah, and so much of what she says I think truly reflects the traits and personalities of the siblings of three.

Molly, Madison & Jaxon

When I was a wedding photographer I got to meet some amazing couple and share their special day. I met Amanda through her family and then taking her wedding photographs. It was such an perfect day. I’ve kept in touch with the family and love seeing the photographs of the children as they grow up. Amanda and Rik have four children, Jay, Amanda’s Step son and then Amanda and Rik’s three children Molly, Madison & Jaxon. From Amanda’s posts on Facebook that Molly and Madison are very different so I asked Amanda to comment on their personalities and how things have changed with Jaxon being born.

“The girls’ personalities couldn’t be more different! Molly (eldest) is very sensible, caring, competitive, bossy, calm and quite reserved. Madison is so funny, clumsy, loud, confident, care-free and the least competitive person I know! She couldn’t care less ha! I wouldn’t say their personalities changed when Jaxon was born, but their personalities were definitely highlighted. Molly immediately took the role of the caring one who looks after him and thinks she’s mummy! Madison was a little pushed out I’d say.  We had to make a real effort to make her feel special as Jaxon got attention for being the newborn and Molly got new attention for being able to hold him and care for him so I think it took Madison a little longer to settle with the new dynamic. 

Molly (eldest) and Jaxon (youngest) are the image of each other and very much look like their dad. Madison is completely different and looks a lot like I did when I was her age.

I definitely think it influences the behaviour, in our case anyway. Madison relies a lot on Molly to take charge and if me or Rik ask for help, very naturally they both expect Molly to be the one to do it. Even though the age gap isn’t too big (2 1/2 years) Molly always takes charge! I have to remind her a lot that sometimes we need to let Madison make decisions and have a say. This can be difficult though as Madison is more than happy to let Molly carry on. Madison is a lot more carefree than Molly and I do personally feel it’s because Molly takes on all the responsibility so Madison doesn’t have too.”

Do you have siblings of three or are two siblings? I would love to hear your thoughts

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