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Committed: The Ties that Bond

with Angella Dykstra

I'm a mom of three, a professional accountant, and an amateur photographer and writer. I am not a marriage expert. But my husband and I take "Til death do us part" seriously, and here I'll be sharing how we keep our marriage strong while we both do that insane work-life juggle.

Check out my Work It, Mom! profile and my blog, Dutch Blitz.

Helping Your Middle Child Feel Included

Categories: children, parenting

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I have three children. Graham, my oldest, is the stereotypical first-born child. He’s cautious, responsible, and sometimes has to be reminded that he’s not the parent. Emily, my third child, is the stereotypical “baby” of the family. She’s used to being taken care of by her parents and her older brothers and sometimes needs to be encouraged to do things herself. Nathan, my middle child, fits the “middle child” description. He’s very much a “look at me!” kid, being sandwiched between the first born and the baby.

He’s a great kid who loves hugs — you will MAKE HIS DAY if you ask him for a hug — and is entirely different personality-wise from his siblings. He loves — and is great at — every sport, and prefers playing outside to reading a book. It could be easy for him to get lost in the shuffle, I suppose, but we make an effort of supporting him in everything he does. A few ways that we make sure he doesn’t feel like he got the short end of the stick when it comes to his birth position:

1. Support his individual interests. He played both soccer and basketball this year and the whole family would go to his games to cheer him on.

2. Buy him new clothes. He got a lot of hand-me-downs from his brother when they were wee, but they’re both the same height now. They also have a completely different build, so he gets to pick out his own clothes and style.

3. Spend one-on-one time with him. I had lots of time alone with Graham when he was a baby, and lots of alone time with Emily when the boys were both at school. I make an effort of taking Nathan on “dates” so he gets some time with just me.

How do you help your middle child not feel left out?

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