Having laid out the classic characteristics and tendencies of children born in each birth order position, there are several caveats and exceptions to consider: First of all, gender plays a role. If a firstborn child is a girl and the next is a boy, the scenario that plays out may be more like two firstborn children than that of a first and middle child. The same often holds true if more than a few years separate the birth of two children. Add into the discussion twins, step-siblings, or adopted children, and the possibilities become more complex.
Lastly, and most importantly—it is worth repeating that the order in which a child is born into a family does not have to define a set course in life from which he cannot deviate. By simply understanding the common roles and conditions that typically come into play when a child is born first, middle, or last, you will not only be able to make a conscious effort to raise your own children to be happy, healthy, and well-adjusted, but perhaps you will even gain some insight into why you are the way you are as well.