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The 1 Thing Therapists Say Harms Eldest Daughters' Happiness The Most

Are you too responsible for your own good? Are you highly critical of any mistake you make? Are you a perfectionist? You must be an oldest daughter.

All jokes aside, while there are certainly youngest children, middle children and only children who also possess these characteristics, these traits are most closely associated with eldest daughters ― a concept known as eldest daughter syndrome. A recent study about the topic found that firstborn daughters actually mature faster than other children because of the stress their moms experienced while pregnant.

That means there is truly something to the popular videos and memes about the struggles associated with being an eldest daughter, which include having totake care of grown-up tasks as a kid, being the one to organize family gatherings, and an inability to ask anyone for help.

It’ll come as no surprise to any eldest daughter that this isn’t easy, and it’s likely overwhelming to think about everything that you feel you need to get done. (Side note: You don’t.)

If you are looking to feel happier and more fulfilled, therapists say there is one thing that’s standing in the way of your happiness: over-responsibility.

According to Natalie Moore, a licensed marriage and family therapist in California, it’s common for eldest daughters to “feel overly responsible for their family of origin.”

They may feel responsible for younger siblings and even their parents, she added. They may also feel like they need to carry “the mental load,” or the invisible tasks required to keep a family afloat, such as getting birthday gifts for a nephew or making sure that your siblings wish your parents a happy anniversary.

“And then this can generalize to other relationships, feeling responsible in

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