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So there's a common rule of thinking (of which I don't have a link to a 'scientific paper' that proves or discusses this!); that the order which you are born in within a family (or even if you are an only child), makes up who you are and how you will cope in life. Basically in a family of 3 children, the first child is the successful one, the middle child is the 'problem child' (or black sheep) and the third child is the molly coddled child.

I'm the middle 'problem child', and I think a lot of my adult social inadequacies are a result (among many other things of course) of having to 'fight' to be able to talk within my family. I'm not trying to lay blame, because that was just the way things were. Both my siblings are chatterboxes and so are my parents. So, if I wanted to contribute to a conversation with my family, I would have to fight to try to get someone to realise I was trying to say something over and over again, only to be 'spoken over' by someone. by the time someone realised I was trying to say something, everyone would stop everything and stare at me (intensifying the pressure), until I got what I wanted to say out............90% of the time someone had already butted in and said exactly what I was going to say.....so I'd have to just say "doesn't matter"

I was just interested to know what your views on birth order were and whether you think it's contributed directly (either mildly or very strongly) to your SA?

Thanks :)
 

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I'm the third and youngest child in my family. My oldest sibling is indeed the most successful and the middle one is troubled. I am painfully shy and have severe anxiety issues. My friend is also the third and youngest child but she doesn't have anxiety, nor is she the slightest bit shy.

Some have said I'm shy because my siblings did all the talking for me. I don't know if that's really the reason or not.
 

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I was the first of two children. I'm successful academically, but an utter failure in all other facets of life, from athletics to socializing to motivation/drive. Of course, my younger sister is also painfully shy and isn't even very academically inclined, so maybe my parents were just destined to breed failures regardless of order. ;)
 

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I'm the oldest of three boys in my family. Both my brothers can talk to anyone, we all have anxiety problems, my youngest brother is bi-polar, I'm the only one with SA though. The only thing I can make of this is that the mixture of two alcoholic, mentally disordered families like my parents came from probably wasn't the best idea. :lol
 

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Elder of two brothers - I am the successful one, but SA-ridden. My brother is the social one, although he tends to be alone sometimes, too.
 

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I'm the oldest of two (have a younger brother) (i'm a girl)

My brother has done everything in life before me. Got a 'big' bike before me. got a stereo before me (even though i was always the one who loved to listen to music) got a pair of Levi's before me. Had a relationship before me. Learnt to drive before me, got a degree before me.

He now is on his second house and has been living with his gf for about 7 yrs. Has a good graduate job and a nice car.

I still live at home with my parents, have no job, no friends and have never had a relationship.
I do have a degree and it's from a better uni but he got a first class., mine was a 2:1.

It seems like i got all the **** from my parents and then they just didn't bother with him and he had it easy. Also my father has always made fun of me and put me down and he never did that to my brother.


I think older children get all the crap. They are like the experiment and the later children get all the advantages of someone having been their first.


I still can't believe all the things i've been beaten to by my brother considering i'm the oldest.

No wonder i''ve got the emotional development of a 12 year old.
 

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I the youngest of three and we pretty much follow the pattern. The eldest is the more successful one in every way, the middle child is the most psychologically troubled and i m the baby. I really hate it because everyone thinks of me as an idiot who can t do anything for himself, and being brought up with everyone around me acting like that has caused me to believe it myself and develop as such.
 

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Well I have some much older half siblings, but they had moved out of the house and everything before my sister and I, so I won't count them in this case. My sister was born first and she is extremely successful and outgoing and all that. I'm the baby of the family and the only with SA.
 

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Amazing
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Middle child here. Older sister, and younger brother. Always hated it. I used to call myself the "unloved middle child". I was a little serious, but my parents always thought it was a joke. I love my siblings, but I do think that being in the middle had a little bit (but not a whole lot) to do with my SA.
However, I still maintain the belief that I was born with SA. Maybe being in the middle just gave me an excuse. I don't know...I don't know.
 

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I dont believe this crap at all...

So Im the first born, 6 years older than my brother and sister. Ive never achieved anything, the least successful, I havnt given my younger siblings a good role model and Im always left out of family stuff like Im the black sheep! I feel my parents dissapproval and dissappointment the most.

My sister who is 18, is outgoing and extraverted. She comes across as self confident. She has been more successful than I and is a very determined girl even though shes had some troubles along the way, shes always picked up again. Shes always in touch with family. My mother and her share common interests. Although my sister and I do have our similarities in some areas such as common views and opinions. Shes still like the complete opposite of me.

My younger brother.. my mother treats him as the 'golden child', my dad gives him the most support, he gets the most attention, he succeeds in everything he does, heck hes the one with a private school education, is a sargeant in the air cadets, does plenty of sports and entering the navy next year at 17 after aceing the first interview at 16. Hes a high achiever and most adored in the family. Hes even had a few girlfriends, which shocked me because hes so quiet but definately not shy! Hes a surprising one.

I think because my brother and sister are so close in age, they get put before me all the time, like they both still have their 'weekend' visits at mums even though they dont live there and dont have to do the whole divorce shared settlement thing. I never get told when they are there, so I miss out on seeing them alot. They go on trips and stuff with mother. I never get asked. I often resort to inviting myself! Theyve always been close together. Even when they were little. I was just the older child, that was left behind. So then I failed at everything and my parents wonder why. I think in part they could of gave me more encouragement and support. It might of helped me.
I feel like they put all their effort into my younger brother and sister. I guess I was a rough draft that they screwed up. lol.

(my brother lives with dad and his new family, sister and I both live with partners)
 

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Well i'm the middle child not sure if it has an impact :|

My younger sister and older brother are 'normal' though..
 

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I'm an only child. I dont think it would have mattered if I'd had siblings or not, as far as my SA goes....dont think it would have made a difference.
 

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I do think birth order plays a role in the development of social anxiety. I think the results are as different as the people in question. A lot of it depends on your parents and their style of raising children. Some parents start out strict and loosen up with age. Others start out lenient and become strict because of things the older children do to make them paranoid and overbearing.

My parents were overprotective when I was younger because I was the first born and they were new to the role of being parents. My younger brother was allowed to do things I was never allowed to do because he was born later and my parents had loosened up a bit because of experience. As a result, he is more socially functional than I am to some degree because I was the guinea pig for their parenting experiments. Everything I do is uncharted territory. Everything he does has already been encountered...

It used to piss me off but I've come to terms with it to some degree.
 

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I'm the oldest and very successful academically, but my social life is horrible. My sister is actually also pretty academically successful, just not as much as me. But she is very funny and outgoing and has a great, regular group of six friends. They call eachother at least two times a day and stay up till past 2:00 am talking. Its not just a phase either, they've been like that for a few years. She's only a year and a half younger than me and I just don't understand how she could be so much better than me, socially. I think her social success just makes me feel a million times worse about my social life. Its not horrible, I have friends, but I don't have one, unified group of friends like her and we certainly don't talk to eachother everyday, and it just makes me feel like such a loser that she has that and I don't.
 

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Only child here. I often wonder if I would have developed better social and coping skills if I had grown up with a sibling instead of being alone. Who knows...
 

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Digimon Loyalist
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Well I'm the youngest of two children in my family. My older sister is the exact opposite of my self, she's the "social butterfly" of our family. She is outgoing, assertive, has 4 or 5 very close friends, and over a dozen friendly acquaintances. Oh and she has a boyfriend. :| and a life worth living... :sigh
I don't believe birth order has any relation with SA. It really depends on the individual, the parents, the upbringing of the child,and partly genetics if a person becomes shy or is predisposed to having SA.
 

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I have one older brother, he's quite successful and not handicapped by anxiety issues as I am. Growing up, I had fewer responsibilities due to being the younger child and I think this made me complacent.
I think more than birth order it is the environment you grow up in that determines how likely you are to develop mood disorders such as SA. Often, birth order determines the environment and this is why there is a relation between it and SA.
 

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I am the oldest child and have one younger brother and I agree with what you are saying. I was always the more academically successful, more sociable (I believe my brother has SA as well and his one is worse than mine - I think it's beacuse he is the moer dependent type and relies on other people to make friends and then he'll befriend their friends rather than making friends himself whilst I don't really have a big problem when it comes to befriending people providing that they're not those really loud/hyper type people), more sporty, etc.
As I said before, he is very much the dependent type - he was never "thrown" into the world like I was - as a young child, I had to answer the phone, do the shopping, doing house chores, be the first person to experience things (e.g like school) etc etc (basically I had much more responsibilities whilst he had hardly any.)
Also, since he was younger, my mum was forever mollycoddling him which is the very reason why he was not "thrown into the world". She would make me do things and then I asked my isn't my brother being asked to do things, she wuold reply "because he's young" but when I was at that age, I had to do those things e.g find work, do house chores (which, after much arguing mostly due to my feminism, I have split with my brother).
 
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