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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Birth Order

This month's series meeting, lead by Kathy, was based on the book by Kevin Leman, The Birth Order Book. Here is an overview:

The Birth Order Book

Why You Are the Way You Are by Kevin Leman

Other variables: age, spacing, gender, temperment, beauty/cuteness, physical attributes, illness/prematurity/disabilities, parenting/family culture.

Parents can identify/overidentify with child in same birth position

First born

Perfectionist, reliable, achiever, hard to ignore, second parent/babysitter, walks and talks early, overparented, pressured to perform, conservative, conscientious, list maker, well organized, critical, serious, scholarly, highly motivated to achieve, precise, strong powers of concentration, writer, perfectionist, can be sloppy but still perfectionist, eyes on Mom and Dad, quiet, skeptical, analytical, assertive, grows up fast, compliant, aggressive, strong willed, model child, pleaser, good student/worker, needs approval, gets walked on, power driven, confident in being taken seriously, tolerant, patient, carries family banner, most punished, king/emperor or queen/empress of family, rescuer

Self tips: learn to say no, take smaller bites of life, lower your sights, avoid perfectionism, take your time, accept mistakes, enjoy organizational skills, allow self to be imperfect, do nice things for yourself, become goal setter, practice positive self-talk, learn to forgive, let others lead

Parenting first borns: Be sensitive to dethroning situations, explain rules, don’t improve on/criticize efforts, allow special privileges, give adults-only attention, go easy on the babysitting, give help when asked

Middle child

Mediator, fewest pictures in the family photo album, avoids conflict, independent, extremely loyal to peer group, many friends, maverick, always plays off first-born, displaced baby, easygoing, laid back, sociable, friendly, outgoing, noncompetitive, unpredictable, squeezed, fifth wheel, goes outside of family for recognition, outsider, free spirit, mediator, pleaser, victim, secretive, “burned child” (get less attention), in helping professions, loyal, less fearful, less anxious, balanced

Self tips: Use social skills, keep your unique qualities, share your ideas, be comfortable with being you, don’t compare yourself, be a leader, don’t spread yourself too thin with friendships/relationships, capitalize on your negotiation skills

Parenting middle children: give special attention and exclusive privileges, give them something new, listen carefully, photograph them alone

Last child

Manipulative, “baby,” charming, blames others, shows off, people person, good salesperson, precocious, engaging, weatherman, performer, noncompliant, scatterbrained, loses things, friendly, charming, gets out of work, “gets away with murder,” prince or princess of family, clown, uncomplicated, tempermental, impatient, impetuous, not taken seriously, lives in shadow of “those born before,” coddled, brash

Self tips: accept responsibility, pick up after yourself, serve others, avoid self-centeredness, admit your faults, share the limelight, date first borns

Parenting last children: Give them responsibilities, hold them responsible, make a big deal of accomplishments, focus on teaching reading, put on some pressure to succeed, complete their baby book

Only child

Lonely, the “super first born,” can have trouble relating to peers, spoiled, self-centered, resentful, well-organized, critical, reliable, conscientious, serious, disciplined, center of the universe, cautious, unhappy, unlikeable, set in their ways, unpopular, useless, perfectionist, rescuer, demanding, double life

Self tips: make time for self, avoid too many commitments, be less critical, serve others, seek out older and younger people,

Parenting only children: (Many same as for parenting first-borns) Avoid criticism, don’t overload or overschedule, allow to fail, avoid pressuring to play with others

1 comment:

Timbra Wiist said...

wish i had made this meeting. . . some of this is so true with mike and myself (me oldest, he baby). . . i think i'll be able to start coming to sandy meetings again with our new schedule shift. . .yay!!!