What your birth order says about how you date, according to experts

What your birth order says about how you date, according to experts
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Now that summer is reaching its final stages, we find ourselves in September - the most common birthday month. To coincide with this, sex and relationships expert Dr Caroline West has created Bumble’sBirth Order Dating Guide.

Birth order refers to whether you are the first, middle, last-born sibling or the only child in your family and the dating guide reflects how this affects your personality and your approach to romance.

A TikTok trend earlier this year reflected an aspect of the different dynamics, with women discussing #eldestdaughtersyndrome.

Bumble’s recent research found that three in four people on the app in the UK (78 per cent) now have a clearer understanding about what they want in a relationship. Research was conducted by Bumble using internal polling between 12th October - 1st November 2022 with a sample of 14,300 Bumble users around the world, including the UK.

So whether you’re an ambitious first-born dating an adaptable middle child, or a charming last-born flirting with a sensitive only-child, Bumble reveals what your birth order says about your dating habits and your green and red flags.

Bumble's Birth Order guide provides insight into our personality and how we navigate datingiStockphoto by Getty Images

“On Bumble, we know that astrology is a key signal of compatibility for many, with more than one million people adding their star sign to their Bumble profiles in the UK," Bumble’s Sex & Relationships Expert Dr Caroline West said, referencing internal data of active Bumble users in the UK in October 2020.

Therefore the dating app's new Birth Order Dating Guide "offers an alternative way of gauging compatibility".

“The order of our birth may influence how we behave in relationships, as our family dynamics play a key role in how we experience adult romantic relationships," West added.

"Whether you are a first born who takes responsibility, a middle child who compromises, or a charming youngest child, our birth order has the potential to shape how we show up in our relationships.

"Bumble’s Birth Order Dating Guide may provide a way for you to reflect on how you can nurture your dating life and find what works best.”

Here is a break down of what your birth order means:

First born

Green flag tendencies: Organised, Ambitious, Takes charge

Red flag tendencies: Authoritative, Likes to be in control

Dr Caroline West says:“First born children are often organised, ambitious, and natural leaders. This can be handy in a relationship as plans are easily made and date admin remains minimal.

"However, this can cause issues if they are used to being in control all the time. Equally, if they are left to do all the organising, they may end up feeling frustrated or taken advantage of.

"Sustainable relationships are about compromise, working through issues together, by recognising each other's strengths and weaknesses.

"Relationships are a two-way street, so communicate with your partner about both of your expectations and responsibilities.”

Middle born

Green flag tendencies: Adaptable, Peacemaker, Mediator

Red flag tendencies: Self-conscious, Eager to please, Accommodating

Dr Caroline West says: “Middle-born children may be used to compromise, or playing peacemaker between older and younger siblings, so they can be great at finding balance in relationships.

"However, these skills often come at the cost of advocating for their own needs which can lead to resentment and miscommunication.

"Making our partners feel that it's ok to talk about their own needs is important, whilst validating their wants and desires.

"In the UK, nearly two in three people on Bumble (62 per cent) are being clearer about their emotional needs and boundaries this year.* We all deserve to be listened to and having a partner affirm that we can speak up is a great green flag in a relationship.”

Last born

Green flag tendencies: Sociable, Fun, Charming, Loving

Red flag tendencies: Excitable, Carefree, Self-regarding, Daredevil

Dr Caroline West says:Last born children may be adventurous and social as they grew up with older siblings and often tried to keep up with them.

"This sense of risk-taking and adventure can be fun in a relationship but can cause issues when dealing with issues that arise.

"The initial honeymoon stage is fun and exciting, however last-borns may struggle as this phase passes and develops into calm emotional intimacy.

"Talk with each other to see where adventure fits into the relationship, while looking at how to face responsibilities that aren't so exciting.

"Open communication about boundaries and responsibilities go a long way whilst making it clear it's ok to ask for support if this is an area of difficulty.”

Only child

Green flag tendencies: Mature, Independent, Ambitious

Red flag tendencies: Self-involved, Defensive, Overly-assertive

Dr Caroline West says: “If you grow up as an only child, you might find that you have a well-developed sense of independence and maturity.

"Whilst used to being on their own, only children may struggle with compromise or feelings of loneliness.

"In relationships, this might impact how arguments are solved, or how partners are supported.

"For a relationship to be successful, emotional maturity alongside empathetic and understanding approaches to resolving conflict is key.

"Create space where each partner feels that they are safe to be vulnerable and talk about their true feelings.”

Birth Order Theory pairings, according to Bumble

  • First Born + Last Born Pairing: Firstborns like to care for others and be in control, whereas last borns are more dependent and less organised, so want someone to look after them. Find the middle ground with the fun and games of Speed Dating.
  • Middle Born + Only Child Pairing: The middle-born may have some extra maturity due to having siblings, so can teach the only child how to share and be more collaborative. If it doesn’t work out, you can always use Bumble’s Recommend A Friend to play Cupid.
  • First Born + First Born Pairing: Two first borns may get into some friendly competition as they both like to be in control. Try Bumble’s Profile Prompts to balance the scales.
  • First Born + Only Child Pairing: As two natural leaders and independent people, negotiation and compromise is vital for this pairing. Bumble’s Questions Game where there is no right or wrong answer, may help you learn more about each other in a fun, low-stakes environment.
  • Middle Child Pairing: Middle children usually end up with someone who is most like them, but can pair well with anyone. Utilise Bumble’s Spotify Top Artists or linked Instagram features to find exciting clues about their life to spark conversation.
  • Only Child Pairing: A pair of only children may butt heads as both are used to being independent. Whilst used to being on their own, only children still want someone to share their life and interests with, often searching for common ground in a partner. Bumble’s Interest Badges may help you find mutual interests to connect over.

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