It is a popular notion that birth order of children can dictate their personality as well as behavior. Yet, there are internal lessons that siblings learn because of where they stand in the family tree.
Take me, for instance. Aside from the obvious "snitches get stitches" adage, or letting your sibling hit you back harder so they don't tell on you, here are 10 things I learned as the oldest of five kids.
10. You reconsider having kids.
You love kids, and you think they're cute with no filter.
But after years of being terrorized by younger siblings, the thoughts of raising little monsters that resemble your brothers or sisters fill you with dread.
Or, if you still wish to have children, you recognize that the baby is not a cute little angel 24/7. This realization could potentially make you wait to have children, making you all the more wise to those sneaky kid tricks your siblings taught you.
9. No food is safe.
Even with the threatening message, "touch and die," deeply embedded on my doggie bags, my food has disappeared into the garbage disposal bellies of my siblings. Chocolate in the freezer has magically vanished with no siblings stating where it went.
The trick here is to get creative. Hide your coveted food by the frozen veggies or ice box. If that doesn't work, use your work fridge or eat at all once. The latter of the two is actually quite fun.
8. Same with your clothes.
Whether you go away to college or just a mere weekend, your clothes are fair game for your siblings to borrow. It's an unwritten rule: You can either accept it, or hide your coveted outfits. Just don't hide them behind the veggies like the aforementioned chocolate; your siblings may eat it by mistake.
7. If you fuck up, it's a huge deal.
Since you're supposed to be setting an example for your siblings, it's almost detrimental to your squeaky clean rep. With a particularly damaging event, you will lose the ability to boss the others around or set them straight. Whether it's dropping the F bomb during Thanksgiving dinner or showing up late for curfew, siblings are like elephants; they never forget and will hold it against you.
6. Your younger siblings have it way easier than you did.
A more lax curfew, being allowed to watch rated R movies before 17, the ability to eat food off the floor when it's been there long -- need I say more? The oldest child is the trial child for rules, regulations and punishment. By the time the last kid comes around, parents could give two shits about rules.
5. You become bossy quickly.
Most people think leadership skills are acquired from extensive career experience and professional organizations. This couldn't be more false.
Well, at least in my case. I can truly say I learned how to lead, delegate (thanks to chores) and be my type A, neurotic self because of the birth order fate decided to place on my family.
That being said, if I'm not leading something, it just feels awkward (cue eye twitch here).
4. Your friends will hit on your younger siblings.
This is simultaneously disturbing, yet flattering. Ah, the burdens that come with having good looking genes.
3. Your siblings will have weirdly high expectations of you.
This just comes with your birth order. It's somewhat of a burden to carry and live up to, but both the outcome and recognition is rewarding.
2. You may be the oldest, but you become the shortest.
See picture below; I'm now the runt of the family.
1. You love the living shit out of them.
Blood is thicker than water, and I can definitely say that my siblings are considered some of my closest friends. Love you all, you shitheads! Yes, even you, Barry.