Philadelphia Area Doulas Recognizing Birth Order When Starting a Family

Philadelphia Area Doulas Recognizing Birth Order When Starting a Family

Birth Order

Birth order is one of the main factors that influence a baby’s personality and behavior. Philadelphia area postpartum doulas often are on the front lines, as toddlers and older siblings adjust to the new baby. Children have different views of themselves depending on birth order and, believe it or not, parents subconsciously have different expectations for each child based on birth order. It is important to understand family structure before having children as to cater to each child’s personality. Having a doula knowledgeable about the differences in birth order can be very helpful in setting up the foundation for sibling adjustments.

First Born

A first born child is typically described as cautious, controlling, conscientious, reliable, and achievers. It is not uncommon for the oldest child to act like a mini adult and strive to impress. As the head of the pack, they feel responsible for their other siblings and thus assert themselves as leader.


Middle Child

Middle children are usually less concerned about impressing adults but more so about impressing their peers. They often feel like they don’t have a place in the family because they do not have the power of the oldest sibling or the attention of the youngest. Consequently, they work for outside relationships. Middle children often have large social circles, thrive on friendship, are people-pleasers, are a little rebellious, and make great peacemakers.

 Last Child

The last born child is typically a little bit more fun-loving than the rest. By the time parents have their last child they are usually a lot less strict which allows these children to be free spirited. They are described as, attention-seekers, self-centered, uncomplicated, manipulative, outgoing, and fun-loving.
 As for only children, they will monopolize their parent’s resources and attention and are typically perfectionist, conscientious, leaders, diligent, and mature for their age.
In some cases, children are not first born, middle children, last children, nor only children.
 In blended families, if the child is five or older it usually means that his or her personality will not change. Otherwise, this child will conform to the new position in the family.


 As for twins, they don’t have the individualistic treatment like the youngest nor do they feel out of place within the family like a middle child. Therefore, most twins, regardless of birth order, will take the personality of a firstborn child.

Gap Child

 Another special case is gap children. When there is at least five years between sets of children, a gap child is born. This causes the birth order to restart. The first gap child takes on the personality traits of the first born and so on.

Adopted Child

 Finally, for adopted children it really depends on the age that the child was adopted. Like blended families, if the child is older he or she will keep the personality of his or her original birth order, while babies and toddlers are more likely change to fit the new structure.

 When it comes time to plan a family, it is beneficial to look at every detail that goes into birth and raising children. Although hiring the perfect doula, decorating the baby room, and creating a birth plan are all very important things, looking at the long term aspects to raising children is also important. Your doula can help you create that foundation for a lifetime.  After all, starting a family is a lifetime commitment.

Works Cited
Bartell, Dr. Susan S.. "", 5 July 2014. Web. 6 July 2014. <>.

Voo, Jocelyn. "Birth Order and Personality." Parents Magazine. American Baby, n.d. Web. 6 July 2014. <>.