Middle Child Blues? Learn the truth about your special capabilities and powers.

I couldn’t ignore this interesting interview on the Today show this morning with authors Catherine Salmon and Katrin Schumann about their book called The Secret Power of Middle Children. (http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/44008766/ns/today-books/#.TjrJz2HZiSo). I’m a middle child in a family of six. I’ve often said jokingly, I’m the middle of six where there’s no middle, to emphasize the absurdity of the bad wrap we middle children get.

Here’s some of the bad wrap of which middle children have gotten labeled. Because they have been neglected and overlooked by their parents, they are unmotivated, have low career interest, late bloomers, and rabble rousers. Oh those unfavorable adjectives do go on. The real problem with such labels is that people often react to middle children through them. We humans have so much going on inside our minds that we tend to stereotype people and situations to quickly understand and organize things mentally. This helps us in a simple way to get our bearing in the world. You can see that I’m resisting labeling us humans as lazy mentally.

In a nutshell, these authors’ research found that middle children have many secret powers. More than first and last born children, they are self-aware team-players with remarkable diplomatic skills, are agents of change in business, politics and science, are outgoing and flexible, deal well with others—in the workplace and at home, more motivated by fairness than money when making life choices, are risk takers and trailblazers and have a deep sense of family, friends, and loyalty. In fact, 52% of  US Presidents are middle children. Middle children who have become world leaders include the Dalai Lama, Princess Diana, and Nelson Mandela. They are specialists, these authors say, in philanthropy and caring for others and in altruism and friendship.

The authors do say however middle children still suffer needlessly from poor self-esteem. Perhaps, this stems from their birth order. But, their drive to go beyond the middle child role of their early years seems to have been good for them. Becoming leaders may be their way of freeing themselves of the in between syndrome.

Birth order does play a role in our personal development. Our first self-descriptions come from how our parents and siblings perceive us and the roles that we play out with them. We take messages about who we are, what is expected of us, and how much we should or should not achieve in life from our family.

It’s our responsibility in life to overcome, work through, and go beyond the negative messages we get as children. No matter how difficult the label, it’s our psychological challenge to set ourselves free of it. Without some difficulty to overcome—who would ever go on to achieve great things.

I have always resisted people pigeonholing me—a testimony to my middle child spirit. You should resist this too. The extent to which you can explore your dreams is the extent to which you let others define who you are. Even the more positive descriptions of you is still a description, after all. A description does not cement you in stone. You are not a sculpture. You are the sculpturer, always becoming—a person in action creating and recreating yourself as you see fit.


3 Responses to “Middle Child Blues? Learn the truth about your special capabilities and powers.”

  1. avatar lexapro says:

    You have really interesting blog, keep up posting such informative posts!

  2. avatar buy lexapro says:

    Great post I must say. Simple but yet interesting and engaging. Keep up a good work!


Leave a Reply

Meet Dr. Deborah Khoshaba

She Has A Gift For You.

Psychology in Everyday Life on Facebook

Getting to Oz: The personal journey to your true self

So You Want To Date A Narcissist?

Sacrifices You Must Make, To Do So!

What behaviors are taking you hostage?

Make a choice to live freely, fully and creatively.

Love is Being Present

How To Get More Love Into Your Life

Our Sponsors and Support Mental Health Sites


All content provided on this blog is for informational purposes only. This blog is not meant to professionally treat people psychologically. The owner of this blog makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site. The owner will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information. These terms and conditions of use are subject to change at anytime and without notice.

PIEL is PayPal Verified

Official PayPal Seal