Does Your Birth Order Really Have An Impact On Your Relationship?

Could growing up with siblings actually be good for your marriage? It's possible. According to What to Expect, the average risk for a divorce falls by 2% for every sibling that a person has. It makes sense that growing up with siblings might help you learn to share a household, but growing up in a family with multiple children can also have an effect on your individual personality. Most people have heard the stereotypes about siblings and families, like "the youngest child is the most spoiled" or "the middle child is attention-seeking," but how accurate are these statements? And if they are true, how might they affect your adult relationships? 


Before making any assumptions about birth order and personality types, it's important to note that every person is unique. There are a lot of factors that go into making you who you are, including your family's socioeconomic status, cultural and religious beliefs, attachment styles, and more. With that being said, there is some evidence to suggest that your birth order may influence how you've learned to relate to adults, authority figures, peers, friends, and potential romantic partners.

Understanding birth order personality types

In some households, the youngest always gets to go first. According to birth order theory, the youngest children often do receive more attention from their parents. If you're the baby of the family, you could be a bit too dependent on others, attention-seeking, or even spoiled, but you're probably also very charming, outgoing, and good at making friends (via BetterHelp). 


If you're a middle child, you were displaced from being the baby of the family at some point growing up. Middle children can often feel ignored or like others don't recognize them as individuals, so they may act recklessly or compulsively. On the positive side, middle children grow up to be very adaptable, cooperative, and good at communication. 

If you're the oldest child, it's likely that your parents recruited you to help with younger siblings. With so many eyes watching you, you strived to be a high achiever, but you may have also felt superior to your siblings and developed a need for control. Some of your strong suits include responsibility, leadership, and helpfulness. 

People without any siblings aren't left out of the equation. If you're an only child, you're probably used to being in the spotlight. You spent a lot of time around adults as a child, so you likely matured faster than your peers. According to birth order theory, you could be a little self-centered and have trouble compromising, but you're also very confident, self-sufficient, and responsible. 


Birth order and your relationship

How does all this relate to you and your boo? It all depends on their birth order and yours. If you and your partner are both the oldest sibling or an only child, you know how to set goals and strive toward them together. However, you're both used to being in charge, so you may butt heads frequently when your partner doesn't cooperate with your idea. Middle children generally make very attentive and supportive mates, but their lack of confidence can cause them to mimic the "babyness" of a youngest child partner or become a doormat to an oldest child partner. Youngest children bring fun and carefree energy to their relationships, and because of this, they really fare best when paired with an oldest child or only child who can handle all the nitty gritty details. 


So who makes the ultimate power couple? Middles and middles. According to Women's Day, middle children paired with other middle children really excel together at compromising and cooperation. Even if you're not a middle child, there may be some benefits to dating someone with the same sibling ranking as you. Relationship expert and therapist Rachel Thomasian tells TZR, "there are definitely positives to matching up with someone who has the same birth order in that they can really validate your experience ... it could be a relief to have someone take on the role you're so used to assuming."