Being the eldest child is never easy. It has its own perks, of course, but it's also filled with challenging responsibilities. Whether it's playing babysitter to your younger siblings or being the first in line if there's trouble happening in the household (your fault or not), the life of the eldest sibling takes on twists and turns not for the faint of heart. If you're also an eldest child, you'll definitely find yourself agreeing to these things!
1. No hand-me-downs here! You almost never experience receiving anything pre-loved. One of the perks of being the first child is being able to get new stuff, something that your younger sibs usually don't get to experience because your things can be easily passed down to them.
2. Your parents were way stricter with you than they are with your younger siblings. Remember when you had to wait until you're OAP before your parents allowed you to go to sleepovers while your bunso tasted the same kind of freedom at a younger age? Sigh. Those strict rules that your parents set for you no longer apply to your younger sibs—and sometimes that just makes you wanna cry.
3. You're the role model. As the first child, you're compelled to do things that your siblings can look up to. Every move you make will have an impact that will either make or break you as the ate or kuya, so you always tread with caution. You always consider the choices you make as something that will also help build your siblings' characters–because, if not, chances are, it's not worth taking the risk.
4. You constantly get the blame for everything. Since you ought to be the "responsible one," you better make sure you've got a reasonable excuse if something bad happens to you or your younger sibling under your watch. Otherwise, you're definitely in bigger trouble (whether it's your fault or not).
5. Your life has always been filled with so much pressure from your parents and relatives. You sometimes feel like your parents have a ridiculously high level of expectations from you because you're the "test child"—and since you're always the first one to go through life's major phases, from weathering failures to achieving life's important milestones, you feel like you have to set a good example for your younger siblings to follow.
6. You're constantly wondering how your younger sibs get away with everything. You're still baffled as to how the rest of your family can do almost anything and get away with it just because "they're younger and they don't know any better" (despite the fact that you think they're already old enough to know better). Oh, well!
Others would say being the eldest child is a blessing and a curse; but no matter how hard this role is, there's nothing quite more fulfilling than helping your parents raise your younger siblings into the great and awesome people they were meant to be. So cheers to all eldest siblings out there!
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Banner photograph by Jenn Evelyn-Anne via Unsplash.