Birth Order Blues

Husband and I are first borns in our families. After reading through a book about birth order, I found that our personalities corresponded to typical first born personalities – one being the pleaser and the other being more assertive. It was interesting and funny to read about other birth order personality types and see how they matched to our siblings. Husband and I both had ‘chatterbox’ labels on our report cards all through primary/elementary school, and Husband’s family has the ‘chatterbox’ gene, but even so, 5yo could talk in wet cement. That being said, I cannot understand how my wonderful 5yo middle child can talk as much as he does, or why he does the stuff he does.
He upsets his brothers on purpose and uses his hands; he annoys people and is so fidgety and short attention span-y. He has loads of energy, needs constant attention, is great at sports but has not got fine motor skill co-ordination. Some of that I can understand – he is a boy so he has a lot of energy; we have always needed lots of physical activity in our house. He is young so doesn’t have a long attention span at the best of times, and as a middle child he needs attention more than his older brother but probably doesn’t get as much as his younger brother. I get that, I do. We try to find things for him to do, to keep him occupied and to use his energy. I try to find something that he will love so he will feel special. He is a great sleeper and can be so loving and even nurturing, but sometimes he is a real shit. Sometimes he makes me cry because he is pushing my buttons and his brother’s buttons when Husband is “in a different office”, over and over again. What can he possibly hope to gain but pissing everyone off all the time? Sometimes when I am overworked and understaffed I use harsh words, and when he is out of earshot I do some name-calling.
Plenty of parenting magazines have tips for happy kids and well-running households, and that’s well and good, but sometimes shit falls apart. One article I remember reading was about kids with ADHD or the like and how to deal with their behaviour. Firstly, I’m sure a 2 page article doesn’t even begin to cover it, but the brief paragraphs outlining behaviour and simple solutions sounded suspiciously like my 5yo. But they also sounded like every other kid I’ve met. I don’t think 5yo has any attention disorders, but his span is sometimes in deficit, so I googled vitamins for ADHD behaviour, and found B vitamins as a substantial assistant in a well-rounded approach to ADHD symptoms. So, today is the second day that he has had B12, and I will look for more kiddy Bs next time I’m oot and aboot. If they can help him focus a little more – and process his carbs a little better – then it will be great for everyone.

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