I am a nursing student, first born and a recovering alcoholic. I didn't think much about this connection until I went to treatment, meetings, etc., and started noticing that this description is not unusual. It got me to thinking about the possible connection between natural caregivers and alcoholism. I have a theory but am wondering if this theory is correct or if I'm simply more observant of these traits because they are so much like my own. If it is true I think it's an interesting observation that could be helpful to parents and their parenting style when it comes to first borns.
I am wondering if anyone else out there can relate or has thoughts on this issue?
Feb 20, '13
Well, I am not going to completely burst your bubble, maybe there might still be a connection...but, I am the younger of the two kids in my family (I have an older brother), I am a nurse, and I have a mental illness and alcohol abuse. My brother drinks a bit, but I was always the one out of us two that drank until passing out. My brother is more money oriented, likes expensive things, etc. and I am more into "saving the world"/giving to charity/volunteering and am more artsy/craftsy, curious, and a "free spirit", yet practical.
Feb 21, '13
I'm second in line and the "problem child". My oldest sibling was never one to cause problems, and is actually deemed the "golden child". So I too hate to break the bubble by saying it's not the first born in my case either. Either way, we are all human and prone to error. We just happen to be the one's who are caught and made to correct them, while others continue to carry on.
Feb 22, '13
I am the 3rd in line and a twin. The oldest 2 have no substance abuse issues at all. My twin and I have both struggled with it. I have been very secretive about it and the main family focus has been on my twin. I am an RN and so is my sister right above me. I haven't noticed a connection to do with birth order.
Feb 24, '13
I'm the first born and honestly, I did a lot of the care for my younger siblings. And then went into caregiver fields of employment, I've never had issues with alcohol. But then, my family wasn't very big into it, so I hardly saw it until I was in college. They weren't teetotalers either, it was just kind of a non-issue.
I've always thought that perhaps there was a familial connection to alcoholism and substance abuse in general, whether genetic or learned (or both). Just my 2 cents.
Mar 10, '13
Quote from wish_me_luck
Well, I am not going to completely burst your bubble, maybe there might still be a connection...but, I am the younger of the two kids in my family (I have an older brother), I am a nurse, and I have a mental illness and alcohol abuse.
Wow, this situation is VERY close to my own. I'm the younger of two sisters, I'm a nurse, and I'm a recovering alcoholic with bipolar II disorder. My sister, OTOH, is most definitely NOT a nurse (our grandmother was), she abuses prescription drugs, and she's dysthymic. We always laugh about it---what else are ya gonna do?---and call ourselves "polar
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