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What Your Birth Order Says About You 21:00

This article is more than 8 years old.
Where do you fall in your family? (Flickr/mr lynch)
Where do you fall in your family? (Flickr/mr lynch)

Birth order theory: Whether you don't believe it or you swear by it, you've got to admit that there's something deeply compelling about the idea that much of our personalities may be shaped by the order we and our siblings were born. Even if you don't have any siblings.

Here at Radio Boston, we found that none of our staff are middle children. And according to recent research, we may be missing out on something. There's evidence that middle children — far from the forgotten family wall flowers — may be better risk takers, negotiators and empathizers than their older or younger siblings.


Are you a middle child or the parent of one? How should this new understanding of middle child affect how we raise them or perceive them as adults? And, if empathy, risk-taking and negotiation are strengths of the middle child, how might you encourage those traits no matter what order you're born in?


  • Katrin Shumann, co-author, "The Secret Power of Middle Children: How Middleborns Can Harness Their Unexpected and Remarkable Abilities"

This segment aired on September 10, 2012.

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