Most of us don’t remember our first two or three years of life; but the fact is our earliest experiences may remain in our memory with us for years and continue to influence us well into adulthood. Our personalities shape on how we were treated in childhood, the order in which we are born in the family, our teachers, our childhood friends and our hobbies. From the biological angel, a lot of or behavior patterns depend on how we are nurtured, a lot of what goes on during childhood, influences how we turn out as adults. And, there isn’t a set right and wrong formula for ensuring achievement and happiness in adulthood.
A lot of research has been conducted by world famous Universities and research institutes on childhood psychology and it is found that the type of emotional support that a child receives during the first three and a half years has an effect on education, social life and romantic relationships almost 20 or 30 years later. Babies and toddlers raised in supportive and caring home environments tend to do better on standardized tests and later on, they are found more likely to attain higher degrees as adults. They are also more likely to get along with their peers and feel contented in their romantic relationships.
Although, parental behavior in the early years is just one of many influences, but it is not the only factor causing the benefits; researchers have accounted for socioeconomic status and the environment in which children grow up as an important parameters in an individual’s development in life. A specific study was conducted by researchers from the University of Maryland on 165 babies; when separated from their parents, some got upset but quickly recovered when they were reunited. Other babies had a harder time trusting their parents after a brief separation, and they weren’t able to calm down after being reunited. This speaks a lot. Some children are extra-sensitive and when they face some trauma in their childhood, they feel anxious in socializing as teenagers.
If as a child your parents didn’t let you make decisions, you might be a dependent adult. If you had controlling parents, you might be a stubborn adult. If you watched too much TV as a baby, you may have suppressed communication skills. If you watched too much of violent programs on TV, you are more likely to be an aggressive grown-up. If you mimic your parents, you’ll be more open-minded as an adult.
Here comes some more focus on what kind of individual you are: if you are the eldest among your siblings, you are responsible, confident and conscientious. You are more likely to mirror your parents’ beliefs and attitudes. You are likely to be comfortable with adults. It is said that oldest children are often natural leaders, and this might reflect at their work place. This is because they are more likely to have power over their younger siblings. Obviously, their siblings must be looking up to them for taking decisions, quite likely these (eldest in family) individuals are dominant and want things to be done in particular manner. Oldest children in later years tend to be perfectionists.
If someone is the middle one among his/her siblings, the person possibly is adaptable, diplomatic and good at people skills. The person must be amicable and might be good at people skills. He/she might like to bring people together. Middle children are often popular and easy-going. However, because their role in the family changes from youngest to middle, it is seen that they often struggle to establish a clear role for themselves, and many go through a period of upheaval. They often face identity crisis.
Often it is seen that middle children are competitive by nature. This is because they do not have the time on their own with their parents that oldest and youngest children enjoy, and their role as the baby of the family is supplanted, so they have to find other ways of getting their parent’s attention. Their success in life helps them get the required attention.
If a person is the youngest child in the family, he/she must be a charming individual. Possible also impulsive and good at getting their own way. The youngest child is pampered among all children. The youngest child is treated as baby of the family, this means that he or she is likely to be spoilt. They tend to take on fewer responsibilities and more opportunities for fun compared to older siblings. But, another fact is also that the youngest child often finds that he/she is not taken as seriously or is not given the independence by the family members. You will often see that the youngest ones in the family crave for independence. Youngest children often rebel as a way of distinguishing themselves from older brothers and sisters; they tend to search uniqueness. They are more likely to take on risks, and often choose a career that differentiates them from other members of their family.
Finally, we find that individuals who are raised as the only child, probably have enjoyed all attention from parents and others in the family. Because of all attention, they are more confident, meticulous and socially mature. This happens due to the amount of time they spend in a largely adult world. The only child assumes that others know his/her feeling, they also think that others think the same way as they do. It is quite possible, they may be dependent on their parents for longer time than other children, spending more time at home and delaying decisions about their future. They depend on others in decisions making cause in their childhood, their parents make most of the decision for them.
Our childhood experiences include the way we have been raised by our parents, this combined with our own personalities. Our reaction to siblings and peers and the context of our lives prepares a particular set of beliefs and patterns that have a huge impact on our future relationships.
People generally can’t change who they are but they can change how they behave and how they are. Our personalities, tendencies, gifts, and vulnerabilities remain the same throughout life but how we use them can, with effort, change substantially. If in our childhood it required that we give up, or more accurately, hide our innate sensitivity, openness, joy, or talents because they were not welcomed and understood by our caregivers. But, we can re-discover them and develop the things that have been suppressed or denied in our adulthood. This shift not only feels better but begins to change our relationship patterns on a deeper level.