The middle child in a family of three or more children is often said to be impacted by Middle Child Syndrome. It is thought that the behavior of their parents towards older and younger siblings leads to the middle child feeling excluded and misunderstood.

Many also believe that being a middle child shapes personality and relationship characteristics, and has quite an impact on who they turn out to be.

According to author Katrin Schumann, middle kids are likely to have “strong social lives and flourishing careers”. Check out our roundup of 20 famous middle children!

20 Famous Middle Children, Plus Facts


Diana grew up as the second youngest of five kids. She was known for her kindness, generosity, and charity work. Many middleborns are natural peacekeepers who are focused on fairness.


Lopez embodies classic traits of middle children, like self-motivation and resilience. For middle children, “becoming a performer is a surefire way of assuring that you won’t be lost in the crowd,” says Schumann.


“Middle kids don’t exactly grow up in the spotlight,” says psychologist Julia Rohrer. Perhaps that’s why many of them seek for it as adults. Legendary pop icon Madonna has captured the whole world’s attention for decades.


Katy Perry, born Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson, spent her years as the middle child between younger brother David and older sister Angela.

“I think being a middle child of an older sister and younger brother has prepared me the most for judging with @lukebryanonline #AmericanIdol,” she joked in a 2019 tweet.


Miley’s the middle child between older siblings Brandi, Christopher, and Trace, and younger siblings Noah and Brisson. While ambition and a drive for performing may lead many middleborns to seek careers in the arts, Miley comes from a family of artists — her father Billy Ray is a world-famous country singer.


“I am the model middle child. I am patient and I like to take care of everyone. Being called nice is a compliment. It’s not a boring way to describe me.” She says that being the middle child of three girls is the relationship that defines her more than anything else.


“I’m a typical middle child. I’m the mediator. The one that makes everything OK, puts their own needs aside to make sure everybody’s happy. It’s hard to change your nature, even with years and years of therapy.” Middle children are biologically sandwiched between two siblings, so they are skilled at mediating and serve as the voice of reason.


“I was a middle child and was used to negotiating. But there was nothing I could do to reverse my mother’s condition.” Middle children are in a unique position – since they grew up with older and younger siblings, they learned to negotiate from an early age.


Darwin was the second-youngest of six children. He went on to become one of the most influential natural scientists in history due to his theory of natural selection and evolution. Credit goes to his above-average drive and passion – a trait shared by many middle children.


The second child of parents Thomas and Nancy, Honest Abe was a visionary middle with strong leadership qualities. This valuable trait helped him to end slavery in the United States and reunite the nation after the Civil War.


The beloved American civil rights leader was the second-born in his family after older sister, Christine. His younger brother Alfred also grew up to be a reverend. “A drive for fairness and a deep need to confront injustice is common in many middle children,” says author Katrin Schumann.


Investment genius Warren Buffett has a net worth of $84 billion. What’s more impressive is he’s donated nearly $28 billion of that to charity. Those middle child talents indeed came in very handy, as these have allowed him to finesse deals and get things done.


Middle kids are often self-motivated and independent. An example is billionaire Bill Gates. In 1975, he dropped out of Harvard to start his software company, Microsoft. He’s possibly the richest and most philanthropic middle child of all time.


“Unhampered by set parental expectations and willing to try new things, middle children are more likely to be innovators than firstborns,” writes author Katrin Schumann.

Zuckerberg has always been an innovator – the company he started in college has changed how people all over the world communicate.


NBA Hall-of-Famer Michael is the second-youngest of five kids, three boys and two girls. It was in junior high when his play went on to another level – middle kids work hard for what they want to achieve.


“My mother never had time for me. When you’re the middle child in a family of five million, you don’t get any attention.” The middle child often feels the need to compete with both his younger and older siblings for parental attention.


Apart from being popular for his soulful voice and successful music career, he’s also famous for being a good husband. Studies suggest that middle kids are excellent life partners since they have a talent for getting along with lots of different personalities, says Catherine Salmon, PhD.


Middle kids often don’t get as much attention as their older and younger siblings. Thor actor Chris Hemsworth doesn’t seem to be overshadowed, though. Although his little brother Liam and older brother Luke are both well-known actors, Chris has become a worldwide sensation.


Middle kids usually have social skills that enable them to keep the peace in the family. “I was the classic middle child in some ways, the one who could have been a priest in an alternate universe.”


The British actor most famous for his role as Marvel Universe’s Loki shared that his sisters shaped the way he understands women. They must have been pretty good teachers, considering how their brother turned out to be quite the heartthrob.

On Being a Middle Child

So contrary to popular belief, middle children aren’t worse off than their older and younger siblings. Middle kids have some pretty special talents too!

Are you a parent of a middle child?

What do you think are the special traits that differentiate them from their siblings?

Are you a middle child yourself?

We’d love to hear from you! Let us know in the comments below.


Credits: / /

Related articles you might also enjoy:

dad and child holding hands
young girl with her teddy
mother and daughter smiling at the camera