- Slides: 23
Family Constellation and Birth Order
n Family Constellation = Birth order can tell us a lot about the lifestyle pattern being developed by the child and how the child perceives reality around them. n In an effort for a child to find their special place in a family, children tend to select different roles, behaviors & interests. n Research shows us that those roles / characteristics / interests tend to be the same or very similar for children in the same birth order… However there are some exceptions and we will discuss those.
CAUTION! n If you are in one of the birth order categories, it does NOT mean that you automatically have all these characters. So be careful not to stereotype based on birth order.
Who am I? n Conscientious n Well organized n Serious n Goal oriented n Achieving n Believe in authority n Take charge n Precise n Picky First Born and Only Children
Only Children (1) n n n Enjoys some intellectual advantage by not having to share mother & father with siblings. Accelerated language development because they learn adult language patterns. Are very careful not to make mistakes Might have difficulties when outside the home and classmates and teachers don't give them a lot of attention, simply because they're used to that at home. Might have an easier time building relationships with adults than with other children.
Only Children (2) n n n n Enjoy being the center of attention Difficult to get them to change their mind May feel unfairly treated or very frustrated when things don’t go their way or as they planned. Expect perfection of themselves and perceive themselves as far from it. Often the recipient of the phrase “I know you're busy, but you're really the one person who can handle this…” Tend to be impatient or intolerant with people who don't measure up to their standards. Can get much farther if one-on-one Ted Koppel. James Dobson
First Born Children (1) n Often considered a special child by the family, especially if male. n Firstborns work hard at pleasing their parents. n They share several similarities with only children like they tend to be conscientious, well organized, serious, goal oriented, achieving and believe in authority n Firstborns often find themselves functioning as substitute parents.
First Born Children (2) n Firstborns (& only children too) tend to be the "take charge" kind of people. They tend to be the first to notice that something needs to be done about something and they tend to be the first ones to get up and do it. n Firstborns tend to be exacting, precise and picky. Jobs like pilots, or accountants, tend to be taken mostly by firstborns because there is not much room for mistakes.
First Born Children (3) There are two kinds of First born children: 1. Compliant nurturers and caregivers. So if something doesn't go their way, they'll tend to accept it and live with it. Eg: bad food (this is not a weakness; they just tend to bear more readily). 2. Aggressive, movers and shakers. Those tend to be the CEO's of the world; they'll do whatever is necessary to get the job done; unfortunately their social / family life tend to be neglected a little because they are so driven to do the best job humanly possible career wise.
Only & First Born Children (1) Trait / Characteristic Sanctified Natural State Perfectionist always do things right and leave no stone unturned to do a thorough job tend to criticize themselves and/or others too much; never satisfied; may procrastinate because they fear they cannot do a “good enough job” Confident trust own opinion, decisive may be self centered, fearful, ambivalent about trying new things Leadership Ability take charge, know what to do command respect; others want to follow their unflinching leadership may come off as too overbearing or aggressive can run over others; may be insensitive and tend to be selfish; too focused on goal and not enough of others’ feelings
Only & First Born Children (2) Trait / Characteristic Sanctified Natural State Organized Have everything under control; always on top of things; tend to be on time and on schedule may worry too much about order, process and rules and not be flexible when it’s needed; may show real impatience with anyone who is not as meticulous; can be upset by surprises Driver Ambitious, enterprising, energetic, willing to sacrifice to be a success Put themselves or those they work with under too much stress and pressure Logical known as straight thinkers; can be counted on not to be compulsive or go off half cocked may believe they are always right and fail to pay attention to more intuitive opinions
Who am I? n Charmers n Vivacious n Funny n Popular n Can subtly manipulate others be impatient or temperamental Youngest Children
Youngest Children (1) n n n n Often get a lot of service from all the other family members May become dependant or spoiled May develop feelings of inferiority because they're smaller, less able to take care of themselves & often not taken seriously. Really successful charmers; can boss subtly or manipulate the entire family. They are the funny / comedian entertainers. Care free, vivacious, popular Can also be impatient and temperamental
Youngest Children (2) When they accomplish something the parents (like it or not) are not so excited about it as they were with the oldest. Like a been-there-donethat attitude. n So to get attention, some use charm, some use manipulation, some use making a mess and some use a combination of the 3. n If they put something in their mind, they have a very determined, persistent "I'll show you" attitude and can persevere for a very long time. n
Youngest Children (1) Trait / Characteristic Sanctified Natural State Charming Likable, fun to be around, easy to talk to Manipulative, seeming to be too slick and a bit unbelievable People Oriented Read others well and know how to relate and work well in small groups; love to socialize May seem undisciplined, prone to talk too much and too long. Can always talk a good game but can’t always produce Tenacious Keep coming with tireless May push too hard because persistence, not taking they see things only their way no for an answer
Youngest Children (2) Trait / Characteristic Affectionate and Engaging Sanctified Natural State Caring, lovable, wanting Can be gullible, easily taken to help, like to get advantage of; make decisions strokes and to give them too much on feeling and not enough on thought Uncomplicated Appear relaxed, genuine, May appear to be absentand trustworthy-no minded, a little out of focus hidden agenda Attention seeking Entertaining and funny, know how to get noticed May appear self-centered, unwilling to give others credit, having a big ego, temperamental, spoiled and impatient
Middle Children (1) n They're the ones that get the short end of the stick; parents expect them to imitate the greatness of the firstborns and at the same time they see they youngest getting away with more. n They tend to get lower grades even if they are brighter. n They tend to get away with more as their parents are not as strict with them as with the oldest and they fly under the radar unlike the youngest child … and they tend to be the rebels of the family. n Not as predictable as firstborn or youngest. They tend to branch off the child directly above them: If he's shy, they're more outgoing; if he's studious more into reading etc. , they're more playful, athletic and outdoorsy.
Middle Children (2) n Tired of being told "you're too young" when seeking the privileges of the older sibling and tired of hearing "you're too old" when seeking attention and TLC like a younger sibling Middle children tend to have more friends because of the attention the friends give them. n Because of all the negotiating and compromise, middle children tend to be good mediators when they're older. However if as children they're more compliant and introverted, they grow up as pleasers and may end up being victims as adults (bad relationships, abusive boss or spouse…etc. ) n Tend to be the most loyal of spouses and friends. When they are loved by their spouse or liked by their friends, they are much more apt to be committed and to go the extra 100 miles with this spouse or friend.
Middle Children (1) Trait / Characteristic Sanctified Natural State Grew up feeling squeezed Learned not to be spoiled May be rebellious because they don’t feel they fit in Reasonable expectations Don’t expect to be treated extra special; really appreciate love, respect and affection Social lion Relationships are very Friends may be too important. They make and not offending may cloud friends easily and tend to judgment on key decisions keep them Independent thinker Willing to do things differently or take a risk on their own Being treated unfairly may have made them suspicious, cynical, even bitter May appear to be bullheaded, stubborn, unwilling to cooperate
Middle Children (2) Trait / Characteristic Sanctified Natural State Compromising Know how to get along with others. Can be skilled at mediating disputes or negotiating Can be seen as willing to have peace at any price; others may try to take advantage of them Diplomatic Peacemakers; willing to work things out, great at seeing issues from both sides May hate confrontation; often choose not to share their real opinions and feelings Secretive Can be trusted with sensitive information; know how to keep secrets & confidentiality May fail to admit it when they need help – too embarrassing for them to ask
Variables – Functional Positions n n n n Spacing: If there are 5 years or more between two siblings, it's like starting a new set. Eg (M-14, F-13…. M-7, F 5) or (M -14, F-12… M-5) Gender: First born males often become functional firstborns: Eg (F-16, M-14, M-12, F-10) or (M-16, M-14, M 12, F-11) Role reversals: Eg (F-14 Sick, physically or mentally challenged, F-12, M-10) Sibling deaths and Adoptions: Self explanatory. The birth order of the parents themselves: Also self explanatory; firstborn parents will run a different ship than lastborn parents. Overly critical parenting: Can cause a child to implode or can cause a child to explode (in a good way or a bad way) Relationship with God: Will not completely eliminate characteristics, but will increase the positive ones and decrease the negative ones.
Applications When parenting/serving a first born / only child: Reassure them that if something they worked on is not absolutely perfect, they are still loved and it does not decrease their value as a human being. v When parenting/serving a youngest child: Give them the message “we love you very much, but you're not going to get away with … and there are consequences. ” v When parenting/serving a middle child: Let them know that they are special and are loved and they don't have to be like the older child, they can be themselves because they are wonderful and they can also have as much fun as the youngest. v With all categories of birth order: (LOVE & RESPECT) Train them / discipline them and bring them up in the Lord and all will be well. v
Glory be to God Forever, Amen.