Lastborns are acutely aware that they are the youngest members in the family and know they are competing with their older siblings for attention. They quickly learn they can capture everyone’s attention by making others laugh, so they tend to be engaging and enjoy the company of others.
Parents generally are not as excited about the accomplishments of the baby as they have already seen their older children walk, talk, and learn to read. Since it isn’t as new for the parents, they may not be as encouraging of accomplishments as they were with their older children. Parents may also not take the time required to appropriately discipline the youngest child or require the baby to do chores (since the older children already are doing them). The older siblings often recognize this and resent it – they view the baby as “spoiled”.
The lastborn recognizes this tension involved in being the baby in the family – sometimes being spoiled while at other times teased for not understanding family conversations or being left out because they are not old enough.
Suggestions for parenting lastborns:
For generalizations and guidelines for parenting children of other birth orders, please look below.