Grace knows birth order dynamics. Children are treated differently based upon their respective birth orders.
THE BABY, JEWEL, and PRECIOUS ONE in the Family
STRIVING TO BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY
FAMOUS YOUNGEST CHILDREN
Look At The Little Baby-Aaaaah! Soooo Cute And Utterly Adorable!
What is there to say? The youngest child is the last child in the family constellation! There is definitely NOT going to be anymore children! When you were born, that was it! No more deliveries! You are definitely not going to be dethroned-not ever!
As the youngest child in the family, you are the adored doll to your parents and older siblings. Since you are the youngest, you are the baby and will be treated more indulgently than your older siblings. Furthermore, since your parents had prior experience having and rising children, they were often be more lenient and matter of fact in raising you than they were your older siblings. Your older siblings were the test experiments for your parents.
There is no clear cut generalizations regarding being the youngest child in a family. The status of the youngest child in a family is clearly dependent upon family size. In small families and medium sized families, the youngest child is often on a par with his/her oldest sibling. The treatment of youngest children in small families is more or less somewhat equal.
However in medium large to very large families, the youngest child is often spoiled, pampered, and exceedingly indulged. In such families, the youngest child is often babied far beyond the appropriate age. In medium large to very large families, youngest children often have the freest childhoods and adolescence with the least responsibilities. Anytime you hear a person asserting that she/he loved being in a large sized family, scratch the surface and you will discover that this person is THE YOUNGEST CHILD!
The reason for this is because she/he often did not have familial responsibilities in contrast to her/his older siblings. She/he is often on the receiving end for more parental love and attention than the rest of the siblings in the family. In addition to these factors, she/he often is better treated than her/his older siblings.
The youngest child often gets away with things that her/his oldest sibling or siblings would be chastised and punished for. She/he is often allowed outlandish liberties regarding behaviors. She/he is not expected to set an example and to be mature like the oldest child in the family. She/he is granted the right to be a child longer in life.
Because of the ordinal position of the youngest child in the family, she/he is viewed as "the child" of the family. She/he has less strictures regarding behavior. She/he is not expected to always be on her/his guard as her/his older siblings are.
The youngest child is often more indulged and spoiled by her/his parents simply because she/he is the BABY of the family. Nothing is to be denied her/him. Besides the aforementioned, the youngest child is often the favorite in the family. Oftentimes, in many families, nothing the youngest child does is ever wrong!
The youngest child in the family as often perceived to be innocent, naïve, and not knowing any better. She/he knowing this, often can use this as leverage, into manipulating her/his older siblings to do her/his bidding. She/he is often adapt in the use of emotional and psychological blackmail of her/his older siblings in that regard. She/he can instigate a familial crisis and/or situation and, of course, the older siblings are naturally blamed for it! A famous Hollywood actor/producer/mogul, who is the youngest of nine children, related during an interview that he always used manipulative behavior as a child and young adolescent to obtain what he wanted.
If the older siblings doth protest the often manipulative behavior of the youngest child to the parents, their mantra is that "she/he is the youngest and does not know any better." Of course, the youngest child is laughing and/or smiling demonically while the older sibling or siblings are stewing in anger! Because of the psychosocial dynamics within the familial environment, the youngest child can be quite charming to obtain what she/he wants!
The youngest child in the family is often the attention getter and the star of the family. This is natural because as the last child in the family, she/he is viewed as the baby jewel by the parents and older siblings. She/he is used to having people around her/him adoring, worshipping, and idolizing her/him in ways that the older siblings are not!
Because everything is done for the youngest child in the family, she/he is often extremely irresponsible and immature at advanced ages in comparison to her/his older siblings. She/he often has a lackadaisical attitude towards life- thinking everything is a game! Many youngest children often do not develop the necessary independence, thus transferring their dependency on parents and older siblings to teachers, bosses, and significant others.
Some youngest children often are passive, preferring to wait upon others to instruct them rather than to be independent self-starters. Quite a few of them want others to rescue, salvage, and save them from life's difficulties instead of owning up to their mistakes. Many of them have the mistaken notion that nothing is EVER their fault, it is always someone else's fault. Their motto is to please help me, I am just an innocent.
Since older siblings tried and went on various paths of discovery, the youngest child either does not try because it was done before or go into a vastly and utterly different path than her/his siblings. Many youngest children are often quite innovative and unconventional rule breakers. They love to experiment and see nothing wrong with going off the beaten path so to speak!
That said and done, youngest children in the family tend to be the rebels and antiauthoritarians of the family. This is because as children, they are not held to higher and stricter standards as the oldest sibling was. Furthermore, they were given more leeway to explore all facets of their childhood. This translates into youngest children have more avenues to express themselves, knowing that there is not one standard and/or way to behave! In families, youngest children often have the freedom that their older/oldest siblings do not have! They often observe their older siblings in terms of lifestyle, academic, and familial choice. Oftentimes, they elect not to follow their older siblings or the family dictum, wanting to be their own individual persons!
Part of that rebellion on the part of the youngest child is her/his wish to be respected and taken seriously. Youngest children are often perceived as cute and babyish well into late adolescence and early adulthood. They have to work thrice as hard as other ordinal birth positions to be considered valued and worthwhile contributors.
Oftentimes, the youngest child is not thought of in more assertive and positive terms but in often condescending terms. Many youngest children reported that even as adults, they are viewed as less intelligent, ambitious, serious, and responsible than their older siblings. They opinions and thoughts are often derided and discounted by family members and relatives. They feel that they must work 24/7 to revamp their image to a responsible and mature person to be taken seriously!
Of all the birth orders, the youngest child is the most spontaneous, youthful, and playful. They usually take life for its own worth. They are not taskmasters. They believe in having fun and enjoying life to the max! They contend that there are no one set rule for everything and that rules are made to be analyzed and broken! They are also not afraid to make mistakes and to appear to be less than perfect!
In summation, the youngest child is the last child in the family. Youngest children will never be dethroned. Since parents are more relaxed when they have the youngest child, she/he is usually not heard to tough standards as the oldest child was. Furthermore, the youngest child has more leeway of behavior and experimentation than their older siblings who were often more strictly raised.
Youngest children are also the most indulged and pampered by their parents. More likely or not, they are also one of the most favored children in the birth order constellation. They are have the least familial responsibilities in the family constellation. This translates into they having the longest, most carefree childhood and adolescence. They also have the freest childhood and adolescence of all the constellations.
Because of the ordinal birth chart position, youngest children are often the most spontaneous and creative people around. They often believe in enjoying life and living for the moment. They are also young at heart! Celebrated and illustrious youngest children include Robert Clary, Holocaust survivor and tv star; Dr. Kevin Leman and Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, noted psychologists and authors; Mark Wahlberg, highly noted A-list actor, producer, and upcoming media mogul ; Janet Jackson, multiplatinum singer; the late Heavy D, rap artist and upcoming actor; the late Marlene Dietrich, chanteuse and actress; the late Vincent Price, actor, gourmand, and all around renaissance man; Christina Ricci and Goldie Hawn, movie superstars; America Ferrera, tv star; comedians Billy Crystal, Eddie Murphy, and Drew Carey; Jim Carrey, all around comedic actor; Celine Dion, singer, and Stephen Colbert, actor/political pundit!
Books to Read on the Subject
Being the Youngest Child in the Family, Part A
Being the Youngest Child in the Family, Part B
© 2011 Grace Marguerite Williams
Michael Reed on July 07, 2015:
I'd like to ask the person who wrote this if he /she was the youngest of so many children. Many people who said positive things about this like the comments above don't know what they're taking about. Such comments often come from people who have never been in that situation, neither did they ever suffer the resulting humiliations of being dumped in a situation you didn't ask for, including being the last in a pecking order. So don't go saying things when you don't know what you're talking about. And don't ever speak for me.
Is it a marvellous thing being the youngest of nine children? Not in my name. All that happened to me is that I got dumped into that family just to satisfy the most nonsensical religion that's ever been worshipped, and not born into it. I was just a possession not a person.
Marvellous is it? Well I detested it, and I hated it that much I'm come to live in another country and start again. Don't go saying things when you haven't even experienced it, especially when it comes to legitimizing it as normal because I talk from experience and say it's anything but.
So shut up, speak for yourself, and don't go saying things when you don't know what you're talking about.
Good day., Michael.
Ivette on May 14, 2015:
As the youngest of 3, I've felt like my parents were too tired to raise me so my sister was like a mom to me in a lot of ways. The oldest is 7 years older than me and the middle is 4 years older than me. My sister in the middle would make my life miserable and the oldest would defend me. My mom often didn't do anything to defend me (almost like she would just zone us out.) also, my parents would keep up with my older sisters but with me it was like I was just thrown into any sports or activities my sisters chose (I had no say.) I also had to start giving myself my own showers from the time I was six and cooked some of my meals by the time I was 8. My oldest sister would help me but she was still fairly young herself. My mom seemed to be too tired to really pay attention to me so I think it resulted in becoming really creative because I had to use my imagination a lot since I had no one to play with. I also always just got hand me down clothes and toys unless it was Christmas or my birthday (and we were middle class.) because I am the youngest I do feel my mom has been overbearing but I think it stems mostly from trying to control me because she views me as a baby. So overall for me, being the youngest was not the best. If I did get away with things it wasn't out of favoritism it was because my parents were too tired to do anything about it and didn't want to deal with it. Also as the youngest, I learned early on the my opinions and emotions did t really matter. As an adult I've tried to become more assertive but as a child I was very passive and quiet and kind of lacked self confidence. I was never asked what sports or activities I wanted to do because they were dictated by what my sisters were interested in.
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on June 23, 2014:
I also did studies on large families and read the subject of large families. In addition to that, I knew people who came from large families incl. parents, relatives, friends, associates, and cousins. In large families, for the MOST part, it is the youngest who is spoiled and indulged and treated the most preferentially while the older, especially the oldest children HAD to grow up quickly.
Youngest children in large families have the freest and longest childhood. They do not have the responsibilities even at comparable ages that older, especially oldest children have. For example, my youngest aunt(one of 10) never had to cook nor clean while she was at home; everything was DONE for her. She was free to indulge in leisure activities while my aunt who was the 3rd of 10 had to assume responsibilities in HER CHILDHOOD. Get the picture, Maric.
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on June 23, 2014:
Yes I know that in large families, children are LESS SUPERVISED. That is par for the course in large families; however, youngest children in large families tend to be indulged by parents and by older siblings. In large families, it is the youngest who receive the lion's share of parental attention. It is the oldest/older children who have to fend for themselves at very early ages but never the youngest. I have seen this firsthand.
Maric on June 23, 2014:
Actually studies have show the opposite of this article. Large families tend to have less adult supervision and often the "lord of the flies" syndrome happens. If your the youngest of a home like that, your life is pretty miserable. Often younger children get neglected and have to fend for themselves at too young an age. Have you not heard of dad has a bad day comes home yells at the wife, the wife yells at the kid the kid yells at the dog. Well the youngest gets it from all of them.
By the way your question air is so biased, it is laughable, no matter which box i tick it's saying the same thing!
rose on August 02, 2013:
I liked being the youngest for the most part. My Dad, especially, was MUCH more lentient with me than with my two older siblings (both female). I could stay out later and rarely got corrected for doing anything wrong. My aunts and uncles, however, paid more attention especially to my oldest sister when we all were adults. Its like people don't take the youngest in the family as seriously. With my parents I knew I was the favorite, but with other relatives i was often in the background and forgotten. Overall I love being the youngest. I used to enjoy causing trouble as a kid and stand by and watch my older siblings fight. The youngest are good manipulators!
AvaGrace on September 15, 2012:
Okay all of this is not true...my mom DO NOT do favorites...anyway that's wrong.:-/My mom says we're all her babies.She don't have no time to spoil nobody,and I don't blame her(Since she has 5 kids and lazy husband)she DESERVES to spoil,and pamper herself instead of some ungrateful kid that will just turn around,and do something bad after she spent $1,000 something on him/her.I'm just saying it like it is.She wants ALL of us out the house,and become successful in life instead of lazy,and that we can ALL take care of her when she's old,just like she did for us.I love my mom,I believe she is one of the most hard working mothers there is plus she has a lot of love and patience for ALL of us.I don't know how she does it.