10 Reasons the Youngest Child in the Family Has it Made

sibling rivalry
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Most people think of the youngest child in the family as spoiled rotten brats unless they themselves are the youngest. Then they have a much different perspective, but still will acknowledge that they have advantages. Conscientious parents try not to coddle the youngest, but that special place in the birth order is impossible to ignore. Older siblings often resent the extra attention and indulgence the baby of the family gets while the baby wonders what all the fuss is about. Here are 10 reasons the youngest child in the family has it made.

  1. Gets babied – Parents tend to baby the youngest child knowing that there won’t be any more babies coming along. There’s no pressure to get them off the bottle, out of the crib and potty trained to make way for another baby. Some parents may want to prolong the baby stage as long as possible.
  2. Less discipline – Youngest children usually get less discipline than their older siblings who often refer to them as getting away with murder. Minor transgressions don’t seem to get punished as severely if at all. The older kids are resentful while the youngest thinks he’s got it made.
  3. Center of attention – The babies of the family quickly get used to being the center of attention. They have their parents and older brothers and sisters there to attend to their every need. Even friends and relatives tend to give the youngest child extra attention.
  4. Very social – Since the youngest is used to being the center of attention, they tend to be much more social. They like being around other people which makes them gregarious and extroverted. This helps them to make friends and become popular with their piers.
  5. Indulged – The youngest child will get indulged more than the older children. A pout or the slightest whimper will often result in getting whatever they want. Why do something yourself when you can get someone else to do it for you?
  6. More freedom – By the time the youngest comes along, parents feel better prepared and more confident in their parenting skills. This results in them taking a more relaxed approach which allows the last child more freedom and independence. Their allowed to try things at an earlier age than their older siblings.
  7. No pressure – The baby of the family has less pressure from others to learn new things or achieve in school and sports. They can sometimes ride on the coattails of older siblings who have done well. However, they may put pressure on themselves to keep up and have unrealistic expectations.
  8. No competition – The youngest in the family isn’t getting any competition from younger siblings for attention or other needs. The parents know they don’t need to save money or other resources for the next child so the youngest has it made. Toys or clothing can get destroyed with no consequence and allowances can be higher too.
  9. Less sharing – Older siblings are always told to share with the others while the youngest is less likely to be required to. They may need to share with other kids in daycare or on the playground, but not with older siblings.
  10. Special – The youngest child can’t help but feel special and often ends up with a sense of entitlement. They’re so used to getting special treatment, they come to expect it. They go through life figuring they just have it made.

Even though many people feel the youngest child has it made, the opposite can be true. Babies of the family often end up with behavior problems and have difficulty coping with challenges as they get older. The constant attention seeking will often label them as smart alecks or class clowns. Their self-centered personality can lead to relationship problems because they tend to seem needy and clinging. Parents who over-indulge their youngest child may not be doing them any favors if they have problems dealing with harsh realities later in life. The old adage of sparing the rod and spoiling the child has some merit, so parents should try to raise their youngest to be as responsible and caring as their older siblings.

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