For many older siblings, your role as the oldest is tough work. You’re essentially tasked with doing everything first, and you’ve got the expectation of your parents on you the whole time. But for your younger siblings, everyone seems to love caring for the baby, and life seems to be a completely different experience.
If you feel that way, science says you’re not the only one.
Research from YouGov.co.uk has found that youngest siblings are more likely to consider themselves funny while eldest siblings are more likely to see themselves as serious.
The study of British siblings surveyed revealed: “The most significant difference is in feeling the burden of responsibility--most (54 percent) firstborns say they are more responsible than their siblings, compared to 31 percent of last borns.”
“Younger siblings, on the other hand, are more likely to say they are more funny (46 percent compared to 36 percent of elder siblings), more easy going, and more relaxed.”
But the need to be funny might not be because of a last born’s happy-go-lucky nature: it might be an evolutionary need, psychologist Richard Wiseman told the BBC.
"The youngest has to compete for parental attention, so they have to be a bit more unconventional,” Wiseman previously said. "They are risk-takers and also more humorous.”
When you think about it, it’s not that surprising is it?
But don’t worry all you older siblings--research has also established you’re more likely to be smarter.
A study from the University of Leipzig found a small difference in intelligence depending on birth order. Firstborns tended to be slightly more intelligent than their younger siblings, who are in turn slightly more intelligent than the siblings that came after them.
Firstborns were also more likely to indicate they were “quick to understand things" and had a richer vocabulary than their younger counterparts.
Researchers hypothesized that the difference in intelligence was more likely due to the eldest child's social status in the family rather than a biological change that happens in the womb.
Looks like being the oldest isn't that bad after all!
This post was written by the editors of Now to Love. For more, check out our sister site Now To Love.