Blog// LGBT Adoptive Parents

How Will Birth Order and Spacing Affect Your Children?

It is natural to have questions regarding parental favoritism, ideal birth spacing, and birth order of siblings when discussing having multiple children, whether through LGBT adoption or otherwise. When pondering these topics, there are factors to consider in your individual situation, including financial, health, and career elements. In this article, we delve deeper into these matters to help you with understanding the nuances of having multiple children.

What is YOUR Ideal Birth Spacing Number?

There is never a “one-size-fits-all” solution when trying to determine what number of years there should be between your children. It depends on what you need, both mentally and physically.

  • Short Intervals (2 Years or Less): Your children will tend to have similar interests if the birth spacing is short. However, this may not be a suitable length of time for mothers to fully recover emotionally from the prior child’s birth or physically from the everyday parenthood demands of having an infant.
  • Middle Intervals (2-4 Years): A period of a few years allows you to experience the “baby years” of each child. While taking care of your newborn, you will be grateful that your previous kids arel be more independent and verbal.
  • Long Intervals (5+ Years): Longer periods are ideal for parents wanting the full experience of each child’s baby and preschool years. By the time your next kid arrives, your previous youngster will have an established routine in school.

Role of Birth Order in Who Children Become as Adults

Research has shown that birth order plays a significant role in shaping who we are apt to become as adults. These are not guaranteed traits but are common characteristics.

  • Firstborn: Since the oldest child has no other siblings around, their parents tend to be their world. Therefore, firstborns try to emulate these adult role models and want to please their parents. They are prone to be industrious and reliable achievers who strive to excel.
  • Middleborn: As the name implies, a middleborn child often experiences the “middle child syndrome” and feels excluded. Being neither the oldest nor the youngest can shape them into rebellious adults who have little direction. Since they are accustomed to vying for attention, they have a greater chance of being agreeable later in life.
  • Lastborn: The youngest child usually becomes an independent and worry-free adult. Parents can be more hands-off and less controlling with these youngest. Having less discipline growing up results in “the baby” turning into a carefree, though occasionally manipulative, adult.

Do Parents Really Have Favorites?

Research suggests that birth order can factor into parental favoritism. Particularly as adults, the youngest is likely to be favored in terms of emotional closeness, while firstborns are favored as problem-solvers for parents. While middleborn kids may be approved less than their siblings, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Parents can rely too heavily on the oldest or youngest child.

As an individual who is considering LGBT adoption for another child or as a current parent thinking about the possibility of multiple kids, it is essential to consider birth order, parental favoritism, and spacing between births. As discussed, there are mental and physical implications involved that require you to examine your personal situation to plan accordingly.

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