Can a middle child have the oldest child syndrome?

. 2 min read

A fun fact about myself: I'm a middle child. To be more exact, I'm the second of three daughters. So yesterday, when I watched an old SuperCarlinBrothers video by Ben Carlin in which he explained how he had middle child syndrome, I just had to look it up and see for myself what it meant.

Apparently, albeit not scientifically or definitely, middle children are chronically ignored in the family because they're not the first child, into the raising of whom parents lay most emphasis, or the youngest child, who is pampered. Middle children don't stand out. They are the peacekeepers, who agree with everyone and who can easily be taken advantage of. The oldest child is given a lot of freedom and responsibility, he does well in school and he tends to get into leading positions in their work lives. The youngest can do anything without consequences because the parents don't have the energy to make an effort with him anymore. Or something by the lines of that.

What I find funny is that I seem to fit into two of these categories. I've been very agreeable and easily taken advantage of most of my life - I was well into my 20s before I realized I don't have to agree with anyone or have them like me. I always fell into the role of the no-sides-taking diplomat between arguing family members (though I never tried to mend any ties, either). My "teenage rebellion" was delayed into my adulthood. And I don't remember getting much of anything I wanted as a child.

But I also have always been considered the brains in my family. I was always expected to do well in school, and whenever (rarely) I didn't get an A, I would be looked at with disappointment. I was expected to get a university degree - and whenever I failed an university entrance test, it was more than just a look. I never had a curfew, I was never grounded, and I was expected to take the lead at different occasions.

So is it possible that I had oldest child syndrome, despite being a middle child?

I suppose the answer is yes. And while I don't want to go into details about the role my older sister had in the family, I can say that the family dynamics were, and continue to be, nothing short of interesting.