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How I Overcame "Middle Child Syndrome"

by Kennedy Brown about a year ago in Teenage years
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My Teen Angst Playlist

It’s true what they say about being a “middle child”.

We’re overshadowed by the strong will our older siblings sustain, and are dulled by the light the “baby” of the family radiates. In my situation; my older sister was the star of any sport she played- running with the popular crowd, and confidently guiding herself through upcoming adulthood. Being only 15 months apart in age, and with her birthday being late in the year- we ended up in the same grade throughout school. Which made me less of my own person, and more of “(sister’s name) sister”.

My younger sister followed almost exactly my older sisters footsteps, but amped up the "personality" category of the 3 of us. Being only 2 years younger than me, I felt as like instead of being able to grow at my own pace, I had to push myself to do things in order to keep my younger sister from passing me up on any life milestone- racing to see who could become an adult first.

I was the quiet, non-athletic sister. Jealous of the confidence, and independence my other two sisters carried; I felt misunderstood, had low self esteem, and extremely secluded myself from the outside world. Instead of sports, I found myself drowning my awkward “teen angst” phase away with music that made me feel like I wasn’t alone. At the peak of my teenage depression, after exploring multiple alternative bands, and solo artist to drown my feelings in- I tried to switch my life tempo by switching over to pop music, and that's when discovered Pink's single "Don't Let Me Get Me".

Everyday I fight a war against the mirror

I can't take the person starin' back at me

I'm a hazard to myself

Don't let me get me

I'm my own worst enemy

Its bad when you annoy yourself

So irritating

Don't wanna be my friend no more

I wanna be somebody else

- and that’s exactly what I wanted, to be somebody else. In discovering Pinks album M!ssundaztood, the song “Don’t Let Me Get Me”, took all my feelings that I couldn’t seem to put into words (or even admit), and expressed them all at once.

On my roughest days, when I didn’t want to play “Don’t Let Me Get Me”, and sulk in my teen depression - I would play “Glitter In The Air” to put my mind at peace.

Have you ever fed a lover with just your hands?

Close your eyes and trust it, just trust it

Have you ever thrown a fist full of glitter in the air?

Have you ever looked fear in the face

And said I just don't care?

Although I’m past my awkward adolescent stage, “Glitter In The Air” continues to be one of the songs I turn to when I’m having a rough day. It reminds me to hold onto the little delicate moments in life- and that if I just take a step back to breathe, whatever bad feelings I’m having will pass. After all, when listening to the song during what was suppose to be "the worst time of my life", whatever I had listened to the song for had dissipated, and I made it through.

As I grew older, Pink also grew with her music, and continued to release relatable songs. Coming to the end of my adolescence age, “Raise Your Glass” and “F**kin’ Perfect” were played on repeat on my classic Ipod shuffle.

You're so mean, when you talk, about yourself you were wrong

Change the voices in your head, make them like you instead

So complicated, look how big, you'll make it

So raise your glass if you are wrong

In all the right ways

All my underdogs

We will never be never be, anything but loud

And nitty gritty dirty little freaks

Pink was teaching me that it was okay to be different, and encouraging me through her music to embrace it. Be loud, be bold, be different, be yourself- so that’s exactly what I started to do. Around the time she released her album Greatest Hits…So Far- I managed to cut all my hair off, and came out as gay to my family, and friends. I became confident, and the feeling of being that “invisible middle child” disappeared.

Teenage years

About the author

Kennedy Brown

LGBT member, just trying to make a difference.

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