Birth Order & the Inner Child

Cristela Alonzo


Baby, Girl, Crawling, Pink, Happy, Cute
Toddler, Crawling, Baby, Purple, Kid

Comedian Cristela Alonzo is the first Latina to write and produce a TV show. And she recently recounted her life story on ABC TV’s the View: Alonzo left home at age 18 despite her mother’s tears and pleading for her not to go. They didn’t speak for more than a year after, Alonzo said.

So how is it that some men and women stand up against family demands regarding their dream to pursue a non-traditional path while others are unable to do so?

There are stark differences in how males and females handle similar situations.
For example, back in the 1940s, the Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation wrote about a young taxi driver, who tested through the roof for aptitudes suitable for the performing arts. A field he wanted desperately to become apart of.

Yet despite total misery, he drove a cab for a living because his father did not believe he should pursue a career in the arts.

On the other hand, long before Stars Wars or American Graffiti fame,
George Lucas told his father in no uncertain terms that he would not take over the family business.

But compare writer Kurt Vonnegut’s experience. Vonnegut knew in high school that he wanted to be a writer. He enjoyed working on his school’s newspaper and planned to enroll in a Liberal Arts program, but his family ordered him to change his college major to science.

Vonnegut was told to follow the path of his older successful brother, a prominent scientist. And he tried to do so but with disastrous results. [Vonnegut used a passive aggressive tactic…he joined the army, but I digress]

Alonzo’s spunk made me examine her website.
According to her blog, she was one of four siblings. Apparently not the oldest, she may have been the baby, which might explain her maverick personality, according to Dr. Kevin Leman in The Birth Order Book.

But lastborn Vonnetgut, one of three, arguably no match for his strong-willed older brother, a firstborn, and his father.

Family interactions and birth order do they play a major role in how people react in these circumstances?

Birth order is not as simple as one, two, and three. There are at least nine circumstances that can play a role in how each person acts, regardless of their birth order. For example the birth orders of the parents, the relationship between the parents and the values they pass on, writes Leman.

Curiously, many of the values Alonozo’s mother espoused were not ones embraced by her daughter. Alonzo believed you had to have a dream but her mother did not.

Birth order and family interaction are fascinating pieces of the puzzle for aspiring entrepreneurs searching for the right path.


Cristela Alonzo’s Blog

The View

Kevin Leman, PhD.

George Lucas/Oprah’s next Chapter

John Bradshaw, PhD

Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation
And So It Goes
Charles Shields/Vonnegut Biographer

I’m Finally Doing What I Want,”
Tom Seligson, Parade Magazine, 1989, pgs. 8-9.
Summary: The story of character actor John Mahoney [Frasier’s dad], seventh child in a family of eight siblings and how his childhood aspirations to act on the stage took a long detour [from hospital orderly to English teacher] before he found his path…


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