While birth order alone cannot serve as a crystal ball for your love life, being the oldest, middle, youngest, or only child can certainly shape your personality in more ways than one. "Early experiences do lay down the foundation for how we act throughout our lives and romantic lives," explains Linda Blair, a psychologist and the author of Birth Order: What Your Position in the Family Really Tells You About Your Character. More specifically, the order in which you were born can influence the way you give and receive love throughout your life.
"Of course, when it comes to human psychology, there are no 'universal' rules, nor are there characteristics that are true for everyone," Blair cautions. Curious about what your birth order reveals about your love life? Ahead, a family psychologist breaks down the general correlation between birth order and relationships, including the pros and cons for oldest, middle, youngest, and only children. Keep scrolling to find out your top downfall in romantic relationships, according to your birth order.
If You're the Oldest Child..
As the hardworking overachievers of the bunch, firstborns are "organized and responsible, nurturing, and good at caring for others," Blair told The Huffington Post. "In a relationship, you can depend on first borns to push themselves hard and to be self-critical."
If You're the Middle Child..
As natural-born peacemakers and champions of compromise, middle children have "a leg up" on other birth-order types. But "sometimes middle children can be easily swayed by the opinions of others," she says. "They're realistic about their own abilities, but may not be so certain about what they want out of life."
If You're the Youngest Child..
As attention-seekers, risk-takers, and charmers, youngest children are "playful, spontaneous, and easy to be around" in relationships, explains Michael Grose, a parenting expert. While usually successful interpersonally, they can also "expect others to make decisions for them and can be a little too flighty for some partners."
If You're an Only Child..
With the spotlight always on them growing up, only children are typically conventional, responsible, and dependable. But because of this constant attention, they can "sometimes be needy and demanding in love," Grose says. Since they're used to an adult world, a youngest-born child may be an only child's worst nightmare when it comes to romantic relationships.
This story was originally published on January 30, 2017, and has since been updated.
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