Sanch wrote a really funny but perceptive post on being first born
And inspired by her post, here is a second born’s reply to that
1. Constant Comparison: As second borns, you are expected to follow the first born. There is a constant comparison. Even if your parents dont make it, others will. Always.
I remember when I entered class 8. Bro has been this ideal model child at school with impeccable manners and known everywhere as the boy who could always been depended upon.
Enter his younger sister who is a back bencher, talkative brat whose favorite activity is to trouble teachers.
A teacher actually asked me astonished ‘You are RMB’s sister…really really? You have the same set of parents…how???”
2. Hand me downs – A second born always gets some hand me downs. One way or the other. In my case, I had a brother whose school books would look EXACTLY the same at the end of the year as they would at the start. He was really really good in keeping his books neat and clean. Which of course meant that three years down the line, I would get his books. They would be without any scribbles, neatly covered and absolutely new looking. But but…for a kid, they were not new eh?
Well I must admit by the time one month passed into the school session, the books would resemble a rat which had been really bitten badly from all sides giving a whole new meaning to the term dog eared!
One of my friends, one day actually told me, Really really RM, how how exactly do you manage to keep your books like this and yet study!
3. Example set: When you are a second born, the first born is an example to everything you do. Right from writing neatly to joining the right course to study!!! You always always have someone telling you ‘see your older sibling, why cant you be more like him/her’
4. Never know what is being a lone child: your older sibling has the advantage of knowing what is is to be a lone child. You know the constant pampering, every wish catered to, yaada yaada..but you are born with a sibling..always…all your life!
5. The milestones recorded: The time your older sibling rolled over is recorded in the baby book or in the parents memory for ever, but ask anyone about what month you really turned over and you will get a reply ranging from 3.5 months to 8.5 months and 32 days and 22 minutes afterwards!!! no one really remembers what you did when..lost your tooth..acha okay throw it in the dustbin or put it under that tree...but for the first born it would have been oh my God, my kid lost his/her first tooth and all that!!!
Having said this, I must admit that I have never for a moment felt that my parents ever differentiated between my older brother and me. He did what I did and I did what he did. Right from cleaning wash basins to dusting furniture etc etc. Of course, he had an advantage of a headstart, but I was always the kid in a hurry to catch up too soon. I am sure he will agree to a lot of stuff that Sanch has written, because its after all, the story of his life 🙂
When my first child turned out to be a girl, a lot of folks told me its good, because if I have another kid, I will be lucky as the girl will take proper care of my second child yaada yaada.
Folks who dont know my brother. My brother has done everything from cleaning my bum when I was a wee little infant to combing my hair to taking me in the peak sun double seat in his cycle to standing outside my dance class for an hour every alternate day because I wouldnt let him in. Everything. 🙂
But then, I am just plain lucky eh?
Second borns, anything to add to my list?