My Story

I have a 14 year old brother and a 6 year old sister. I’m an 11 year old girl and life isn’t always “amazing” for me. My older brother gets a lot of attention and more stuff than me because my mom and dad believe that they need to pay attention to him because he’s older and he might do things that will upset them.

My little sister…oh gosh…she’s spoiled! If she doesn’t get what she wants she will cry. and sometimes slap. which is very horrible around Christmas time and she will cry in any game she looses.

me…im pretty depressed. im angry a lot i have VERY LOW self-esteem i search the internet and read books on how to make things better but my two siblings are so spoiled that nothing helps.
and all my teachers think im just like my older brother so they treat me exactly the same.

– Gianna

I Never Stood a Chance

Note: This might be all over the place, so please bear with me.

Right now, I’m sitting in a room of the house owned by my mom. I’m 28 years old and I don’t even have a driver’s license. She blames her ex-boyfriend for his empty promises to teach myself and my sisters when we were in our late teens. My older sister is out of the house was indeed the leader of the three of us. She had to be, due to our mother rarely being home. She was going to school at the time, and when she wasn’t in school she was clubbing. I still remember occasions in which she’d come home from school, and I’d be so excited to spend time with her, only to see go to the bathroom for a shower, grab a dress and leave. There were several times in which I hadn’t seen her all day and happen to wake up late at night to hear her partying with several friends. I would cry as loud as possible just so I could see her. This stopped after a week, when she yelled at me for it. For the first years of my little sister’s life she called my older sister “mama”.

Though she was never really around, she was overprotective. We only really left the house for school, or occasionally to hang out with our cousins or with other kids at a babysitter’s house (which were their own hellish experiences, but that’s a different story…). Whenever me and my older sister would meet any of these kids, the interaction was always the same. The group took to her immediately, and I was constantly bullied. There were occasions in which several of the older kids (8-9 years old)the babysitter was keeping would group together and stare me (5-6 years old) down as if they were going to jump me. I doubt they had real intentions to do so, but it can still prove unnerving at that age.

I cried a lot as a child, and Mom frequently got mad at me for this. One occasion, both of my sisters were beating me up (yes, younger too. What can I say I was a soft kid…) and when she saw me on the floor crying, she simply says, ”Be a man and fight back.” And with that, leaves the room.

I received several beatings from my older sister at this time. She was about 9 or 10 and dealing with the loss of our older brother, whom I’ve never met (more on this later) and our parents divorcing. She had a lot of pain in her and I was the one she often expressed it on.

At the age of 10, Mom divulged that I was conceived specifically to take the place of my older brother. Which in and of itself isn’t that big of a deal, I guess. But in later years, thinking back on our interactions, I feel she didn’t want a son to replace the one she lost, but a product to be corrected with the belt.

As the years progressed, through high school and college, I notice my mom and sisters becoming closer as I distanced myself from my mother as best I could. There were instances in which Mom would get on me about something, then start yelling at me two other unrelated things. I ask my older sister about it, and I find out that on several occasions, the three of them came together just to rant about what a pain in the ass I am. This dynamic would continue over time. When me and my little sister got jobs, if my sister had a bad day at work she could easily go to our mom to vent. I gripe about things at work, I get yelled at for not taking initiative to leave. I’d explain that I’ve turned in several applications; she’d continue to yell at me saying I wasn’t trying hard enough to find another job. In recent years, my mother admitted she was harder on me because I’m a male. Though I still live with her, I haven’t really talked to her since I was 12.

May I also mention that throughout all these years until college, we were STILL not allowed to leave the house for any reason other than school. From practically no interaction with the outside world, to a customer service job…clearly this wouldn’t turn out well..

This brings you guys up to speed on my past and explains my current broken state. I have severe social anxiety. When in public settings, as a reflex, my body tenses up as if ready for a fight to defend myself against the outside world. I don’t have many friends because of this. At work, I scare people away from me with a look. Actions that I mean to be benevolent unintentionally come off as hostile to those around me.

I’m an aspiring comic book artist. Many people say I’m good, but whenever I try to submit work to a company, I’m so riddled with self doubt that nothing ever gets done. Recently, I’ve found myself entertaining the idea of suicide.

– A.J.

A Middle Child Forgotten

For the first five years of my life I didn’t even know my mom, dad, or siblings. When I was three months my mom handed me off to stay with my uncle and auntie in Chicago. I stayed with them for five whole years until one day my mom popped up with the police officers and told me that she was my mom and that it was time to go home. It took me four years to cope with the big change. By the way she has treated me these past thirteen years, I wonder why she even bothered to take me from people who actually cared for me.

I am the middle child of an older sister and brother and my youngest sister and brother. My oldest sister, Lyn was always the one that could have fun with friends and go to the movies. I knew then that we were young, so I waited for my chance. My oldest sister grew older and moved out at age fifteen. My mom still spoiled her from a distance. My sister has had two cars given to her by my mom and dad.

I have an oldest brother name Gene. Gene is in college and my mom gave him a car before, but he ruined it. My mom and I always were in arguments just because I wanted to hang with the older group. I use to get in trouble for the simplest things such as staying after school or being with friends. I was the only one that seriously had a hard time.

It was mandatory that I had to cook and clean for all five of us, I had to help my mom cook on Holidays also when I didn’t want to. Everyone else were able to relax, but not me. I became impatient with waiting for things to happen that never did.

I was supposed to be the next in line to receive a car, but I became pregnant at age seventeen Honestly, I think that is no excuse because my oldest sister has a child and my mom bought her a brand new car. I am currently I senior attending high school and my mom won’t even help me get through high school so I can go to college.

My younger sister and brother, Te’Jon and Audrionna, are the two spoiled ones. They can do anything they want to do now. From what I hear, my younger sister is the next one in line to get a car. That is not fair due to the fact that I am on my way to college and doing good things for my life and she seems not to care. I feel she has abandoned my attention and also the fact the she has another child somewhere out in the world that she has forgotten.

– Phaedra

My Middle Son

Hi, I am Joanne from Perth in Australia and I have three children – Jake is 6, Ashley is 4 and my daughter Alyssa is almost 2.

I have struggled with Ashley since the day he was born as he had severe reflux. That was quite hard to deal with and then at about 18 months of age his behaviour became terrible – that was while I was pregnant with Alyssa.

It seems that he only has issues when he is at home so that is why I think that he may suffer middle child syndrome. When he goes to kindy he is really good. I suppose because he is off on his own and doesn’t have his siblings or myself around.

He is a very moody child. One minute he can be quite happy and laughing and then in a split second can change to being very upset and depressed. He likes to spend time on his own alot and we really have to encourage him to join in with things if we are doing stuff together. He also throws terrible tantrums the moment I say no to anything and has changed from wanting to try things himself to always saying “I Can’t”. He wets his pants almost every day which can be really annoying but it doesn’t seem to bother him at all.

He is also very smart and his skill level (academically) is higher than others his age. He writes his name very well and has done for the last year, and his drawing and colouring is impeccable.

I don’t feel like I am giving the others any more attention but I suppose it is different because the attention I give him is mostly negative. I always tell him that I love him and always praise him when he is good or does something well or right.

I don’t know what to do with him. Is it that I need to take him to therapy? I feel like I really need help with dealing with him because some days it is just too much.

If anyone has any suggestions, it would be greatly appreciated.

Many Thanks
Joanne

Middle Child of Four

Let me start by saying that I am a middle child in a family of four. My older sister is a year older than me, my brother is 3 years younger, and my younger sister is 6 years younger. Technically, my brother is also a middle child. However, being that he is the only boy, he is heavily favored in my family as if he was an only child.

I started to feel like there was something different about me during my preteen years. I always looked for reasons as to why I was treated differently than my siblings, and I would usually find excuses as to why my parents were justified in the way they treated me. As I got older I realized that my birth order was playing a much larger role in my life than I ever realized.

I did not have a tragic childhood by any means. My family is well off, I always had friends, and I was usually one of the smarter kids in school. The one major problem in my life was the criticisms I received from my parents. I was always targeted for my weight, lack of maturity, laziness, etc. I took these comments for the truth and believed that I exuded these traits.

It was when I got to college that I started to realize that I was not as much of a lost cause as I believed. Away from my house and the criticism, I unknowingly blossomed into the lady that I always was deep down. I was constantly complimented by professors, dorm mates, friends, etc. I was told how independent, strong, smart, successful, and beautiful I was. At first, when I was complimented, I thought to myself “all these people who see the good in me must not know me well enough; none of these good things are true.” However, as time went on I began to forget the things my parents had told me and believe what others were telling me.

I am thankful that being in college has helped me see how much I have going for me. I am by no means perfect, but being away from home helped me see that I have just as many good traits as my siblings. It is still hard sometimes, especially when I come home from school on winter or summer vacation. I am once again forced into the shadow of my adored siblings, and I still find myself asking “is the something wrong with me? What makes my siblings so much better?”

It saddens me that being with my family causes my self esteem to lower so much, because I really do love them. I am thankful for the growth college has granted me, but I hope that a day comes when I can be amongst my family without the environment causing me to doubt myself.

by Nicole