“The only time where last is first.”
Growing up, I was the youngest of three children. My two oldest are seven and three years older than myself. And there are benefits, as well as downsides to being the youngest kid in the family. And we all know the benefits of being the youngest. Punishments are doled out less to you than your older siblings, which means you get away with more. You might be the smartest sibling after the others that came before you also. The house is yours after everyone else leaves meaning you have more room to yourself. The bond between you and your parent/s are very strong because you are the last to leave the house. And spending is more geared toward you rather than your older siblings out of the house. But why is life like this for so many people?
Well, let’s take a look at the punishment aspect of growing up. My oldest sister for instance was punished a lot more than myself. Why, well, it is your job to set an example for the other siblings that are younger than you. Since there was no one younger than myself, I was not setting any example. So this way, I was more able to move about how I wanted with less restrictions. Even still today, my oldest sister is way more responsible than my other sister and myself. She babysat us when she was young, and even performed cooking and cleaning duties alongside my mother. But other aspects of being the youngest is the fact you get to learn so much because there are siblings older than yourself. Meaning, you get a chance to see all what they are learning and you can immerse yourself in what is to come for you.
Another aspect of being the baby of the family is to get a chance to spread your wings. You have a lot more leg room to move about the house when it’s just you. The living room is yours, kitchen, bedrooms, bathroom, the everything is yours. That once small space seems so big now that you are the only one left in the house. And that small space brings me to another aspect of being the youngest. You develop a bond with the parent/s that is not quite like the older siblings. You are the last of the pack, and here is where the parent/s can spend really good quality time with the kid. And considering the older ones are living their own lives, you can have a lot to discuss with the parent/s.
And in the end, you have all these benefits of growing up the youngest. But with those benefits come the downside. That once vibrant house is very silent and no one is there to really converse with. You used to talk to each other, now it’s homework and television. For me, I was only about four years out the house right behind my second sibling. So for me it was not as bad, but imagine being in the house longer. Though even with any downside of being the youngest, I still wouldn’t trade it for the world. I love being the baby.
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