- A new study looks at the effect of having a sibling of a different gender on an adult’s personality.
- After analyzing the answers of 80,000 people in nine countries, the researchers concluded that the gender of siblings does not affect our adult personalities.
- While a sibling’s gender may influence one’s personality during childhood, this influence disappears with adulthood.
Is it true that growing up with a sister or brother influences who you are as an adult? Some people would say yes and go so far as to explain how their siblings’ gender affected their personalities. Researchers have also tried for a long time to answer this question.
Now, an extensive study of more than 80,000 people in nine countries has come up with what appears to be a definitive answer.
The presence of a sibling of a different sex does not affect the character of an adult.
Principal Investigator’s Study Dr. Julia M. RohrerSaid a personality psychologist and lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the University of Leipzig Medical news today:
To clarify – we are looking at personality in adulthood rather than childhood personality. This is important to clarify because sibling gender may have effects on character while people are still living with their siblings, but it fades later in life.”
“What surprised me was how consistently we weren’t able to detect any effects on personality. We categorized the data in all sorts of ways to check if there were effects in individual datasets, or maybe for some birth groups, or maybe only first-born boys, etc. But we came Mostly empty-handed!”
The researchers work with survey responses from people in the United States, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Australia, Mexico, China and Indonesia.
Co-author Dr. Anne Ardila BrenøeAssociate Researcher at the Department of Economics at the University of Zurich Medical news today:
“I gave it myself advance workI would have expected that having a sibling of the opposite sex would increase the gender personality. We didn’t find any evidence of that, which was surprising to me.”
The study appears in psychology.
Citing research on the topic dating back to 1958, the authors wrote:
“A closer look at the studies reveals a number of potential issues, such as highly selective samples, a large number of different outcome variables, and statistical evidence of unknown or weak strength.”
To help narrow the focus of their research into consideration of multiple family sibling gender formations, the researchers used a concept from a 2018 study by Dr. Angela Coles And the Professor Eleonora Patakiniwhich Dr. Breno used again in her study.
The authors of the new study wrote that, “Parents’ decision to have another child, likely depends on gender but may also depend on the personality of their current children. Thus, the final makeup of siblings is not random. As a result, differences may exist between people who have a brother and people who have a sister. Even in the absence of causal effects of sibling gender. But when parents decide to have another child, the gender of the next younger sibling is essentially random.”
“This results in a naturalistic experiment that allows for the estimation of the causal effects of the next younger sibling’s gender: the differences between people with the next younger sister and people with the next younger sibling can be attributed to the next younger sibling’s gender.”
Researchers investigated the influence of siblings on your palm Traits—including openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism—as well as confidence, patience, and a locus of control, or the belief that one is in control of what happens to them.
Based on survey answers, the study found consistent gender differences between females and males. This allowed them to explore the issue of sibling influence using what they call the “typical female personality index” as an indicator against which to measure personality effects.
“Importantly, this indicator is not intended to be interpreted as an essential personality trait (‘femininity’). Rather, it is simply an indicator that has more weight on the traits where the largest gender differences are observed in private surveys,” the authors wrote.
Notably, the Cools and Patacchini study found that “women who have a younger brother earn about 7% less than women who have a younger sister,” according to the new study.
Cools and Patacchini found that women who have a younger brother more often choose traditional female career paths, and the new study says, “Their wages fell significantly more upon entering motherhood than women with a younger sister.”
Dr. Breno added:
Similar to Cools and Patacchini, I have also found in my previous work that having a younger brother compared to a younger sister increases a woman’s gender-conforming behavior regarding career choice and earnings and that the ‘brother’s earnings penalty’ appears immediately after the first birth.
My interpretation of these different findings is that personality is a more difficult concept to influence than gender-correlated behavior.”
The study looks at the influence of siblings in people who have grown up now. Therefore, Dr. Rohrer said, “The people included in our analyzes were born from the 1950s through the 1990s.”
Gender roles in the home today are more fluid than those of the last century. Dr. Rohrer noted in Dr. Breno’s research:
“The influence of siblings on occupational choice, they said, disappears in the most gender-equal families, that is, families in which the parents have approximately the same working hours during childhood.” “Thus, it is reasonable to assume that if traditional gender roles in parenting disappear, the influences of sibling gender may also disappear.”
“However, it appears that despite progress in this direction, we are still very far from eliminating these roles,” Dr. Rohrer said. “One way to look at this empirically,” Dr. Rohrer said, “is to look at the impact of child birth. The first is on the gains of men and women.”
“For men, gains mostly remain stable or decline slightly for a very short time in countries where men are more likely to take parental leave. For women, there is a sharp decline in the early years and, on average, they do not return to their prenatal earnings levels. This is because women who have children are less likely to participate in the labor market, more likely to work part-time, and their wage rates also tend to be lower.”
– Dr. Rohrer
“So the economic reality is that while the economic disparity between women and men has diminished dramatically over the past decades, when it comes to fatherhood, it still appears largely that women ‘take the blow’, suggesting a traditional choice of roles,” Dr Rohrer explained. .