I was sort of a middle child. I was the youngest of three, until our half-brother arrived when I was seven. He immediately became my big sister's darling. With my big brother growing out of sibling rivalries, I was left as the middle in a red-headed sibling sandwich. We fought. A lot.
My experience as a middle child was one factor in our decision to have only two children. When we discovered that my second pregnancy was twins, one of my many and mixed reactions was "At least we get to have three kids without having a middle child!"
Sadly, despite there being only a four-minute gap between Finn and Vieve, Finn seems to have assumed the role of middle child. My eldest, Xander, is very close to his sister. They're often to be found snuggled up on the couch with a book, kicking a ball around, or playing with Lego, while Finn watches from one side.
Vieve obviously idolises Xander. Every move is scrutinised and copied, particularly at the dinner table. I find myself reminding him that he is a role model and needs to set a good example... and that dinner plates are not drums.
I do understand why Xander finds Vieve easier to get along with. Finn is in a boundary-pushing phase. He loves to "investigate" Xander's Lego creations, in a way that leaves scattered pieces across the floor. I've caught him on the kitchen counter switching the kettle on. Earlier in the week I heard the (cold) oven door open. I ran to the kitchen to find him attempting to put an orange in the oven. While wearing oven mitts.
On the other hand, I feel for Finn. He and Vieve are very close, but when Xander gets involved, the dynamic changes.
Xander expressed a preference for Vieve from when the twins were very small. I'm not sure if it originated as a fear of replacement, or because Finn was a more demanding baby, but the Lego incidents have definitely solidified his opinion. I hope it eases with time.
Have you noticed an odd-one-out among your children? Has it improved as they got older?
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