Middle children often have a rough go of it. They never have their parents to themselves. The first child gets to enjoy all of the perks of being the first, such as parents being thrilled with all the little milestones, etc. The last child gets time alone with parents when everyone else has grown up and moved out.
Middle children are often the most ignored child. This does not mean that their parents ignore them, but they do not get as much attention as the first born or last born child. They do not get the one on one time the other kids get. This can often lead to loner-like behavior where they do not require attention to function. It is also typical of middle children to be quiet and shy. They often exhibit impatient behavior. Also, because of the lack of feedback and attention they can be uptight.
While middle children can exhibit the above the behavior, the other side of the spectrum can be true as well. Middle children may be outgoing in order to get the attention they have been lacking. They are often really friendly so that they can expand and get noticed. They often make up for their lack of attention, or the fact that they are being overlooked in the home by being loud, and having a laid back, fun personality. In other words, they are often patient and exhibit qualities you would expect from someone who has had plenty of practice at waiting for their turn and what they want.
Although middle children often take one of two ways when it comes to their personality type, they also often exhibit common traits that come as a result of their birth order. These traits are as follows:
They tend to be fairly diplomatic. This is to be expected when a child spends their life in the middle child position, where they have to be the diplomat and the peacemaker with the other two strong personalities on either side of them. They tend to have the most flexible personality, and are more willing to adjust rather than expect everyone to adjust to their needs. Many middle children are rebellious as they are looking for attention. This can lead to highly competitive personality traits.
Often middle children are the hardest ones to pin down when it comes to personality. They sometimes suppress their personality because there are expectations of them, and they are balanced between two people with much stronger personalities.
As a parent, in order to help your middle child develop positive personality traits, it is a good idea to try and give them attention. It is not easy to be as excited about the “second” firsts, but it is important to make sure that your child feels like they are not lacking in love, or attention. Be conscious of the amount of time and energy you give each child.