There are a lot of rumors going around that middle children have it pretty rough.
OK, some of those rumors are actually based on scientific evidence… but I think that the world has been looking at middle children all wrong.
As a middle child myself, I don’t think I’m the forgotten child—I’m the independent one.
You think I try and attract attention because I’m lonely? Nope, I’m just super creative and clearly the person everyone wants to party with. Admit it. I’m on your speed dial.
And I’m convinced I’m not alone.
Here are the talents that every middle child has, and that prove middle children will always and forever be kings among siblings.
1. The skilled negotiator
Middle children are pretty used to not getting their own way. Instead, they use their skills of manipulation and negotiation to get what they want, according to Psychology Today. This could explain why 52 per cent of American Presidents were middle children, including Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy and Teddy Roosevelt, says Katrin Schumann, author of The Secret Power of Middle Children.
2. Purveyors of peace
Along with those negotiating skills comes a need to chill everybody out. It’s not about escalation with middle children, but conflict resolution. Look at Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King Jr. for some prime examples.
3. Let the creative juices flow
With every type of surveillance available to parents these days, helicopter parenting has become a serious problem. One of the children not “benefiting” from this issue? Middle children. This leaves them open to experiment, try out new things and entertain themselves.
4. Pressure is (usually) off
The first born has the world on their shoulders. A parent doesn’t want to know they screwed up, so tries every single self-help book they can purchase to make the perfect kid. The last born, they want to fix everything they screwed up along the way. But the middle child? They’re free to try out those experiments without the worry of their parents looming down over every move they make. And they usually have some awesome stories from those experiments, according to #6.
5. You want them as your hubby or wifey
Remember those conflict-resolution skills? Well they’re especially beneficial when one of those stupid arguments come up about who should take the trash out. Fine, I’ll do it, but you’re TOTALLY being designated driver when we go out Saturday. Negotiation? Check. Got what I really wanted? Oh yes.
6. They’re awesome at… “elaborating” stories
Whether it’s to get attention, resolve a dispute, or just deflect blame, middle children win at story time. They’ll even create some crazy antics just to get all eyes on them. Case and point? I’m writing this for you all right… now.
7. They’re the glue of the whole damn family
Middle children are the silent presence that make everyone show up for Thanksgiving and Christmas. We’re the reassuring sibling that ends the feuds between mom and the younger sister so that everyone can move forward. And we never ask for credit. Basically, we’re saints.
8. All that glue, and still got shafted
Your older child was a monster who got to do everything. So your parents decided to bring down the hammer on your ass. When you proved that you’re an angel, they softened for your younger sibling. ARE YOU F***ING SERIOUS, MOM?! But it’s OK, you get those siblings back in #11.
9. Proof that sharing really is caring
No new bike? Sure. Hand me downs? That’s cool. No one likes the person at school or work that hogs all the good snacks, and we’ve been prepared for it our whole lives. Seriously. Just share. Your waistline is already thanking me for it.
10. We work hard, and play hard
OK, so every once and a while sure, I want some attention. So I’m willing to work super hard on this story so I can post it on my mom’s Facebook and she can tell all my aunts, “look at how amazing my daughter is writing for this fancy internet company!” Then, because I worked so hard, I’m calling up the girls. We’re getting tanked.
11. Reap the benefits of both younger and older siblings
As a middle child, I looked up to my brother to figure out what I could and couldn’t get away with. For my younger sister, I had someone to pass my knowledge onto. And of course, I have two fantastic options of who really took dad’s car out and scratched the side while he was in Florida. Downside? It feels like you will forever be the one who shares a bed with a sibling. I’m 26. I don’t care if it’s a cheaper hotel rate. I need my own bed.
12. They do their own thing, that’s why you love them
Ms. Independent is basically about my life. Middle children likely moved out as soon as they possibly could. Not that you wanted to leave your family, but you did want to do your own thing! Take Rachel Green as a prime example. Of course, she still needed love too. And she and other middle children will always be there for their family when they’re needed, as you’ll see in #15.
13. Seriously go with the flow
While this usually ends up with us being the butt of everyone’s joke, you can shake it off. Pick your battles, man. Not everything is a war, and you know that logic will triumph eventually. I feel like a lot of hippies were likely middle children… and stoners.
14. They’re always on time
Seriously. I HATE being late. It’s basically my worst nightmare. If someone says 8:30 p.m., I’m there at 8:30 p.m. or earlier. And I cannot STAND it when people say 8:30 p.m. when they really mean nine. “Why are you here so early? I didn’t think anyone would show until nine, so I’m not even ready to go out yet.” IF YOU MEANT NINE, SAY NINE!
15. It’s never about them
Not that other people don’t make it about them, but middle children are always looking to help. They’re the shoulder to cry on, the person you know will always listen to whining about your boyfriend, the one who actually has solid advice based on personal experience or research and is willing to share it with you.
In conclusion, they’ll never ask for your attention, but believe me, they’re craving it. So go give the middle children in your life some thanks, because you’re damn blessed to have them!