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7 Ways You Know You're The Oldest Child

As the oldest of three girls I definitely know what it feels like to be the oldest child. And now, after having my second child it's been fun to recognize that experience in my own oldest child. I'm pretty sure all the first borns out there can relate to this list.

1. Your rules were always stricter. It seems as though your parents got more and more lax with each additional kid. You had the earliest bedtime for the longest. And curfew was totally unreasonable. All your bargaining, negotiating, and "it's not fairs" helped pave the way for a sweeter deal for your siblings.

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2. You're a smooth talker. Oldest siblings are great at talking their younger siblings into doing what they want. You often got to choose the game and the outcome, all without your younger playmates being the wiser.

3. You're all too familiar with the crashed playdate. I have many memories of having a friend over to play, only to have our cool "grown-up" game interrupted by younger visitors. All oldest siblings have that sigh that says "Alright, you can play too."

One of the many perks is that your first years were documented thoroughly.

4. You place a high value on vintage. Oldest siblings know that a toy you haven't played with in years gains sudden and unending value when it's discovered by a younger sibling. I've watched my oldest son struggle with this truth and I can totally empathize.

5. You've heard "You're not my mom" many many times. Older siblings are often placed in an awkward position, at times they are entrusted with their younger siblings safety, and at others they are expected to leave the parenting to mom and dad. I remember that while babysitting my younger siblings, they loved to remind me of my very temporary authority.

6. You have at least seven baby albums. The role of oldest is not all negative. One of the many perks is that your first years were documented thoroughly. You have mountains of baby pictures featuring just you. Your younger siblings can't say the same.

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7. You were better prepared for parenthood. Another pro to big sister/brotherhood is the practical life skills. Very few oldest siblings are scared to hold a baby or squeamish about changing diapers. Not only do you have more hands-on baby care experience, you also feel proud and protective of your younger siblings in a way that feels all too familiar when you become a parent.

Image via Carla Wiking

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