Birth Order and Personality: What Your Birth Order Tells About You

Jill Holtz

April 15, 2013

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How do you fit within your family’s birth order? Ever wondered what birth order and personality mean? Read more to find out what your birth order tells about you:

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First borns are natural leaders. They frequently live with a sense of entitlement and even superiority. However, they often come in two “flavours”: compliant nurturers/caregivers or aggressive movers and shakers.

As a rule, first borns are picky, precise poeple.  Their attention to detail and order explains why accountants are overwhelmingly first borns – they love paying attention to small details. If you marry a first born, you’re going to marry someone who is likely to succeed vocationally, but you’re going to have some challenges in your relationship with them.

First borns like to take charge. They are goal oriented, want complete control and need to earn their keeps. They also have a strong desire to win.

On the negative side, first borns are often moody and occasionally lack sensitivity. They can be intimidating, particularly by pushing people too hard or refusing to take no for an answer. They tend to be bossy, flaw pickers, and conscientious to a fault.



Middle borns are the most difficult group to categorise, in part because they get grouped together in uncommon situations. The key to understanding middles then is to think “rebound”.

To avoid conflict and direct competition, a middle child will often go off in a sharply opposite direction from the child (or children) above him. The “classic” middle born (if there is such a thing) is very relational, tends to be a people pleaser, and usually hates confrontation.

Middle borns are normally good team players, reliable, steady and loyal.  Middles aren’t as comfortable making decisions as are first borns. One of the interesting paradoxes about middle borns is that while they tend to be mediators and negotiators, of all the birth orders they are usually the most secretive, keeping things to themselves.

On the positive side, middle borns are usually very calm.  They are skilled at seeing both sides of a problem and eager to make everbody happy.  On the negative side, middle borns have a difficult time setting boundaries.  They tend to blame themselves when others fail.


The typical last born’s creed is “What, me worry?” They have spent their entire lives trying to draw attention to themselves. They are often the performers, the class clowns, the life of the party.

Because last borns are always learning to do for the first time what their older siblings have already accomplished, they have a drive to be noticed and thus can be very good at persevering. Last borns often choose people-oriented jobs.

If you’re a last born, you’re probably one of the world’s cheerleaders. In all likelihood, you are probably a generally cheerful person. You’re an extrovert, energised by the presence of other people, and you’re probably not afraid to take a risk now and then.

On the downside, last borns tend to get bored rather quickly. They have a strong fear of rejection and a short attention span.  Because of their people skills, last borns can be pretty good manipulators. The last born’s “lovable” exterior can unfortunately sometimes descend into a moody, mean and agressive temperament.


The best way to describe only children is to take a first born and multiply him by two. In many ways only borns are extremely similar to first borns, but they take these traits to an extreme. Not only are they leaders, but they tend to be super perfectionists.

Only children also live with a staunch sense of entitlement. If you marry an only child, keep in mind that you’re marrying someone who has never had to share toys with siblings, compete for attention from her parents, and has always had centre stage. More than likely, your typical only child is a list maker, a scholar, and thrives on logic.

Only children also tend to be very conservative. With people, only borns may be introverted. Only children are the mega-movers of the world. They are task-oriented, tend to be extremely well organised, very conscientious, and ultimately dependable.

Only children negatives can be tough to handle. They are often unforgiving, very demanding, hate to admit they’re wrong and usually don’t accept criticism well.

Reproduced with permission from 

What are your thoughts on this take on birth order? Does it fit with your experience? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


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