Middle Sister Syndrome?

Being a middle child is often lamented.  It is spoken of in terms of something to overcome.  “Middle Child Syndrome” and its effect on the emotional development of children is studied in Sociology, Psychology, and Child Development.  I even know of people who had only two children, or made sure to have a fourth to eliminate this factor for one of their children.

I am not technically a middle child.  If you consider the four of us who grew up together, I am one of the middle children.  If you add in my brother who has a different mom, I am second oldest.  If you just look at the sisters, I am the middle sister.  So, in a lot of ways, I grew up feeling like a middle child.  I wasn’t special for being oldest, or babied for being youngest.  I did fade into the background a lot.

However, as I have gotten older, I have seen the merit in being in the middle.  I am five years younger than my older sister, and five years older than my younger.  This has given me a unique opportunity to bond with them both in similar ways.  I shared being pregnant with my older sister. She was pregnant with her second, and I with my first. She shared her knowledge with me; including the little things you would be mortified to tell anyone else.  Then, I was able to be pregnant with my younger sister (she with her third and I with my 4th) many years later.

As the years pass, I think I can relate to them both well.  My older sister and I share the joys and frustrations of raising teenagers, while my younger sister and I share the joys and frustrations of raising  toddlers.  I glean wisdom from a sister who has already been there.  She jokes that I can learn from her mistakes, but I am constantly impressed with the mother she is, and I learn from what she does right.  I then pass that on to a sister who will be approaching it in the blink of an eye (with a little of my own thrown in.)  Although, if I’m honest, my younger sister has taught me a great deal as well.  I am continually amazed with how much she accomplishes with excellence.

I feel that I am in a very blessed position-sandwiched between two of the greatest women I know.  Good or bad, the position I hold in my family has a lot to do with the woman I’ve become.

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3 thoughts on “Middle Sister Syndrome?

  1. Sounds like you have an awesome connection with both of your sisters! I have always read that sibling rivalry and other issues has much more to do with how the parents treat each of the children than anything else. I am one of those people who was determined to have 4 kids so no one would feel like the middle child. It wasn’t a great experience for me growing up. But after our third boy, we had twin boys, so we ended up with a middle child anyway! Hopefully my boys will be as close as you and your sisters are

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  2. Hey, you left out your sister-cousin who gives terrible advise but leaves you laughing! Great post as always. Very proud of the beautiful women all three of you have become and I admire all of you as sisters, cousins, and mothers-the Proverbs 31 verse that says “Her children shall call her blessed” describes all three of you to a tee!

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