01 Mar Twins But Different – Mar 14
By Grace Susatyo
When I was raising my firstborn, I was extremely attentive, strict with rules and overly panic if she fell down or sick. I watched constantly to make sure she was still breathing in her cot, did not let her play on public places, and very conscious of what she was eating. Expert says because parents give full attention to their firstborn, it tends to make firstborns to become perfectionist. In contrast with my second-one, I tend to be more relaxed with her, as I have got the experiences packed in the bag. And she turns out to play the spotlight for her curiosity and adventurousness, which is so different to her sister.
My two girls certainly are different. But how can this happen? Dr Kevin Leman, author of The Birth Order, believes the secret to sibling personality differences lies in birth order, but not limited to, and he suggests parents to adjust their parenting style based on their child’s birth order.
Parenting The First Born
Firstborns tend to become so focused on being perfectionists. Parents, ensure that you are giving constant encouragement for their achievement, but at the same time let them know that it is okay if they do not succeed at everything. Though we want our firstborn to be loving and caring with their siblings, but do not always treat them to be babysitters for the younger ones (occasionally is fine). Share the house duties with the younger children so the firstborn don’t feel the pressure.
Parenting The Last Born
Be sure to share responsibilities around the house for them and ensure that they are required to comply with family rules and regulations. Do make a big deal of your last born’s accomplishment and be sure to display the child’s craft or drawings to encourage their achievements. Do not forget to update the family album. It may sound silly but it is important. Be sure to have photos of the last child in the album or around the house to show that they are loved.
Regardless of the birth order, parents need to remember that each child is unique and different. And as Christian parents, it is our utmost duty to raise our children in the fear of the Lord. Never cease to constantly praying for your children, start reading the Bible for your kids from early age. And most importantly live your life based on the Word of God and your kids will mirror and follow your footsteps. Parents, let it be our goal and daily prayer for our children, that “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth” (3 John 1:4)