What was YOUR experience being THE YOUNGEST child in your family? Were you the FAVORITE/INDULGED child? Were you allowed to get away w/things that your oldest siblings COULDN'T? Did you have opportunities that your oldest/older siblings DIDN'T have? Do you consider yourself lucky in comparison to your oldest/older siblings? Are you more successful than your oldest/older siblings? Did your oldest/older siblings wish they were...….YOU?
As the youngest in the family, I've had quite an experience in my family. I was more indulged than my elder siblings, and i troubled them quite a bit.
Are you from a large/very large family? In large/very large families, youngest siblings are pampered & indulged while older children get the SHAFT. Youngest children in large/very large families have VERY LITTLE or NO responsibilities in comparison w/older children at the same or similar ages. Youngest children in large/very large families have CAREFREE childhoods & adolescence.
Children in large/very large families have UNEQUAL treatment. Oldest children are treated as slaves by parents & younger siblings. Middle children are all but ignored & fall through the cracks. Youngest children have IT MADE.
As the youngest, I was lucky in ways. Was I more indulged? Perhaps. But that was more tied to our changing economic condition. When my two oldest siblings were young our father was a tobacco farmer. My sister suffers embarrassment over helping in the fields. Forget that she was paid, money put in savings accounts for her and my brother. I have very early memories of dad and grandpa returning from the sale, arms laden with gifts as if it were Christmas.
My father was in banking by the time the next child was about four. A steadier and more dependable stream of cash, but not enough for affluence. There were still hand me downs for both that child, and me when I came along. The story is that sister shocked my parents over her joy at a new coat. The first new article of clothing she remembered receiving.
So. My dad was a farmer when I was born but due to my age, my only recollections are country fun. By the time I was old enough to notice clothes my father had purchased a business and we were well off enough to shop for clothes, our dresses were no longer hand made. We all benefited from changed circumstances. Yet our ages left us with different childhood memories. Heaven help my siblings begrudge me for the timing of our father's work endeavors.
In a family, when a child is born it is indulged by the family. Because of the difference in our ages, that meant my two older siblings emulated the behavior they saw in their parents and indulged me with them.
But, let's be fair. The first child had the closest relationship with the parents. That is enviable. The only boy had the special relationship with the grand parents. That is enviable. The middle sister had the personality that bullied its way to more than its fair share of resources. I guess that can be admirable. If viewed from the proper angle. I was babied as a child. That's enviable.
Every child has their place in the group dynamic. Neither is it the best, or worst position. Until one decides not to grow up and broods over how they didn't get this, while not accepting the value of what they did get.
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