Why do people from large families have a harsher, rougher, more cynical, and more street
persona? It is because they had a more hardscrabble life? Madonna and Mark Wahlberg, both from large families, totally exemplifies these traits!
The part of the Boston area where Wahlberg was a kid is known for being an area a lot of people from outside it know to stay away from. He, himself, has talked about being a tough kid who got in trouble in the neighborhood. He is, I think, a youngest kid (which means he may have emulated older siblings who were already out there in those neighborhoods). I don't know for sure, of course, but I'd more lean toward blaming the neighborhood - not the number of kids in the family.
I have a friend who has six (now grown kids) - all college graduates, none of them at all "hardscrabble". My high-school friend came from a family of eight kids - no "hardscrabblers" there either. Another family I knew had, I think, eleven kids (last count when I was last in touch). Most of them, if not all, are college graduates. My examples are all suburban families, though. In even working-class suburbs, families that don't "have all the money in the world" still get to send their kids to schools where other families generally have similar values (and the neighborhoods are a whole lot more "neighborly".
Women and men who have a lot of kids tend to be of a different mindset. That mindset probably rubs off on their children or is passed on genetically, affecting all areas of their lives. It may not be that having so many siblings makes one a certain way, it may be that having that sort of mom or dad makes one that way. Personality traits are inherited to some degree. Upbrining is only one factor in our personalities.
That is not to generalize about all people from or with large families, as I know several who are decent and socially responsible and raise polite, educated children. I also know of some who are harsher, some who are incorrigibly impulsive, and some with social anxiety disorders. I think parents' attitudes do more to shape childrens' attitudes than simply the number of siblings.
The average parent of large families often let their kids sink or swim! The concept of planning and providing for their kids emotionally and financially is a total anathema. They portend that their kids do the best that they can- if not, tough!
gmwilliams, I would like to know the source of your research as you state all of this as fact.
Children in large families are not viewed as precious individuals as they arei in small families.They're seen as a group.Since parents are uninvolved in their children's lives,children raise themselves.They are more rough strewn.
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