Scarred for Life

Hi, my name is Sandra but I go by my middle name Desiree I’m 22 yrs old. My brother is 3 years older than me. I have a younger sister who is 18.

Growing up my brother and I had a horrible childhood. My dad always drank and hit us. He beat up my mom and called her a bitch. He would call me a whore and I was only 12 years old. Meanwhile my sister would witness everything. He never told her anything because she was his spitting image. He loved her and in my entire life I only saw him hit her twice.

At 15, I had my first boyfriend and saw him at school in secret. Somehow, my mom and dad found out and they would call me a bitch. Slut whore a fucking disgrace. My dad disowned me at this age because I had a boyfriend. To this day we don’t talk. Well, years later my brother dropped out of high school. I graduated high school, have a technical certificate. I still want to go to college and be something to be very proud of. I’m the first in my family to do all this.

Meanwhile my mom was kicking me out and telling me to get the fuck out of her house. She would tell me that I aint doing shit with my life. So I left. I now live on my own and pay my own bills.

For these past 2 years I have been depressed and spend the entire day in my room. I could spend all day in bed. This depression, low self esteem, and anger have me feeling crazy. I’m only 22 but I’m emotionally drained and sometimes have no reason to live. I am jobless and all my family says is that I’m lazy.

Oh, by the way my 18 year old sister has brought men to the house. Slept with them there and my mom doesn’t say a thing. I told her that why doesn’t she stop my sisters behavior. She laughs and says “oh its cuz she’s strong willed and a badass”. My brother has also had women over and nobody tells him a thing. They just smile and are proud that he brings so many women to the house. I’m the only person in the family to have such achievements and they aren’t recognized it’s sad. I’m the middle child and have always been treated bad. My brother is the rebellious one and my little sister is spoiled rotten.

I’ve asked my mom why they treated me bad and she says I’m lying. She’s said that I’m just hysterical and that everything I remember is a lie.

So for these past 4 day i have decided to not talk to my family. They are toxic. They hurt me so much and all I ever wanted was love and a stable family. I think it’s time I disown them.


The Other One

I am a middle daughter.  My older sister is very strong, sarcastic, outgoing and funny (to others, I am often the butt of her jokes).  My younger sister was the smart and athletic one who needed a lot of attention because she was difficult.  I was always just ‘easy’ as my mom likes to say, but this also meant that I got little attention.  Both of my sisters were athletes, I was not.  When sports didn’t work out for me it was like my parents didn’t know what else to do.  I think I could have been an amazing dancer but that wasn’t the kind of thing my parents would think of getting me into.  Since I was so ‘easy’, they didn’t really find a need to help me find my niche. Growing up I found it very hard to express who I was since my older sister was always right there to make fun of me.  Eventually I just started inhibiting myself.  While I was always able to make friends because I was pretty (sad but true) inside I never felt like I belonged.  On the outside I was well-adjusted but the internal struggle has continued to grow for years.

I’m now almost 30 and have gone through years of depression, isolation and sadness and no one knows it (no one).  I moved away from home after college to get away from that ‘me’ and hopefully build a new life based on who I wanted to be.  While this somewhat helped for a while, I realized that the personality traits that I so hate about myself continue to sneak in and affect my work, friendships and relationships.  What’s even more frustrating is that I feel I have so much to offer the world if I could just rid me of my self-consciousness.  On top of all of that, I will admit that I am very attractive, but to be honest it’s almost like it makes me hate myself more.  I feel like a huge let-down.  You see an attractive person and think they’ll have confidence; I’m just quiet and lay low, forgettable.  I’m so worried about what people will think of me that I often just fade into the background, never wanting to be the center of attention but at the same time wishing I was confident enough to be just that.  I feel like life is passing me by and I’m desperately trying to figure out how to not waste another day like this.

The biggest problem is that I don’t even know who “me” is.  I guess that’s the definition of an identity crisis.  My family constantly reinforces these thoughts of myself to this day, which is why I try to stay away.  My sisters both have nicknames for each other and refer to me as “the other one.”  I’m the weird one, the odd ball, the one that no one really knows.  Just when I think I’m making progress and feeling better about myself my sisters manage to knock me back and don’t even think twice about the comments they make or understand their profound effect on me.  I’m so tired of living this way and live in constant jealousy of the ease with which those around me live their lives.  Even in times of difficulty they know who they are.  I live with this every day, good or bad.  Sometimes I wish I could hit a restart button to my life.  I just don’t know how to fix it…..


Middle of Five

Although my parents give me the least attention, i get attention. Althought my parents give me the least, at least they give me something. Although my parents do more for my siblings, they do things for me. Although my parents love me the least, they still love me. We middle children should accept this and not let it get us down; we are better than our siblings and parents and we will be/are better parents than they were/are. As the middle child, i have noticed that other middle children get less attention, too, but those children are intelligent, great, even. We cannot let middle chid syndrome get the better of us. We must accept middle child syndrome and not let it take us. Unfortunately, not everyone sees this, not because they are unintelligent, but because i, for two and a half years, was the youngest, before my younger brother, than sister came. Although only the middle chid for two and a half years, my older brother has transformed into someone who gave up on academics and decided that it is better to be ‘cool’. He is distanced from the family, and i do not want to become like him. We must know that at least we are loved, even if only a little. Yes, we aren’t liked as much, but that cannot affect who we are. We cannot let it.

– Bilaal

A Story from the Readers


I am 22 years old, been married for nearly 4 years and have 2 gorgeous daughters, so it is unlikely that I fit into the loner or commitment bracket as much, but I don’t have a wide circle of friends. I had always grown up in the shadow of my elder brother, he was the brainy one. My younger brother was the baby, and got away with everything. I was the middle child, always getting noticed for the wrong reasons, I am still reminded of these reasons now most times I go home.

An example would be my brothers both being able to have friends over, it was always an inconvenience for mine to come over. I was expected to look up to my brother, and be an example for my younger brother.

As I got older into my teens I used to spend every weekend and my friends house, where I felt most comfortable and less like an outcast that my brothers could gang up on. My friends parents didn’t know or didn’t care about when I was bad, therefore I was never bad to them (wonder why?). I had my escapism when I joined a military youth organization, I found a niche that I fitted right into, I also enhanced my independence.

My older brother got jealous, and resented me (he still does), probably because my mother noticed me for something good for a change. I joined the Air Force and now live 300 miles away from family, where I feel most comfortable.

But problems persist. On my wedding day my mother pleaded poverty to my in-laws, and did a good job, but managed to buy my brother a car for his 21st (she even tried to justify it by saying that your 21st only comes once, so its more important). My wife’s family were seething, does my mother think that my marriage wont last? I can tell you that my relationship with my wife and her family is spot on, and in no way of stopping. We didn’t even get a proper wedding gift. I only received a fraction of the amount the car cost for my 21st. Its examples like this that make me glad we live so far away.

My wife has put up enough with this, she is at her wits end and I believe that this whole middle child syndrome had manifested into a kind of middle family syndrome. My wife and kids are more important to me than the background I come from, I believe. They are my future, and a new life, none of the crap I’m used to. We never get calls, e-mails, we’re always expected to make the first move, and we’ve never asked or received any help (we have had plenty from my in-laws), yet my older brother has his food cooked, bed made, washing cleaned, but he shows no thanks. It makes me sick because my wife and I have struggles and learned to pay our own way, and pay plenty of taxes, he is just a freeloader. Why are we treated differently? Is it because we are moaners? Or are we just thought of as Owain and his new family, and are (once again) ignored and not given the time of day? 2011 is going to be a good year, I am not going to blab about my life and achievements, but am simply going to see if anyone in my family asks or shows concern. Here are some other examples, to summarize;

– My younger brother receiving money to travel home. We are never offered any help to go home, and it costs us a heck of a lot more. Yet my mother uses poverty as an excuse to not visit.

– My daughter stayed at my in-laws, but my mother HAD to see my older brother the same day (he lives 30 minutes away not 6 hrs like us). She went and visited out daughter, moaned about money, and went home. (Only went to see her once in the whole 2 weeks she was there while my wife was giving birth to our (equally) second daughter)

– Brings up stories of my misbehaving youth every time we go home, as if I am still to retain my place in the family lineup as the ‘little git’ one.

– We are not called, or given as much help as my other brothers, we almost feel forgotten.

My wife and I are going to concentrate on the future with our children. If we are to be sidelined, then we have to let that be and sideline my family, we have our own life issues without this hanging over us. Its a case of ‘get involved and interested, or not at all’. We wont see our children feeling sidelined and alienated.

Do You have Middle Child Syndrome?

So you’re a middle child, but how do you know you have Middle Child Syndrome? We have creatively collected this survey from a list of the most common symptoms seen in an individual with Middle Child Personality. The survey is composed of questions that are arranged in in a scale from mild to dangerous symptoms.

The 10 Symptoms
(Answer Truthfully!)

  1. Do you feel alienated from your family?

  2. Do you feel alienated from your friends?

  3. Do you often lock yourself inside your room?

  4. Ever felt used by friends?

  5. Do you get easily depressed from criticism?

  6. Have you ever dreamed of something but didn’t have the courage to pursue it?

  7. Do you feel envy and even hatred towards your parents or siblings?

  8. Have you ever done things just to be accepted or noticed by others?

  9. Did you feel that you were pushed to achieve things that you did not enjoy your childhood?

  10. Ever felt that you did not belong and no one loves you and the world will be better without you?

Meaning of my scores: Count the number of YES‘s to the questions above

0-3 Congratulations! You’re perfectly normal.

4-5 You just suffer low self-esteem. Nothing weird, go fix your hair and you will do fine.

6-8 Do not be scared. It seems you have mild Middle Child Personality. Self-help and guidance will often cure the condition.

9-10 Unfortunately, you suffer a severe condition of Middle Child Syndrome, try not to do anything rash. Emotional support from love ones along with psychiatric help will solve this.