From News for parents.org:
A new study published in the Journal of Human Resources shows first-born children get about 3,000 more hours of quality time with their parents between ages 4 and 13 than the next sibling gets when they pass through the same age range.
The study provides a possible explanation for why older children tend to get more education, make more money and score higher on IQ tests. Brigham Young University economics professor Joseph Price conducted the analysis.
Price says his findings on birth order and quality time surprise most parents who try to split their attention evenly across all their children. This study shows parents do provide equal time on any particular day, but not when looking at each child's total time with parents between their fourth and fourteenth birthdays. That's because the amount of time parents spend with children on a daily basis declines as families get older. First-born children get more quality time simply because they pass through childhood when there is more overall family time to be shared.
I often hear parents kid about how the second child doesn't have a photo album and no one was really dedicated to them. I think most parents do make an effort to give the second child (or third or fourth) the same attention as the others. When I read this article, I started feeling bad for my second little one. I hope he gets the opportunity to get a good education and doesn't have a lower I.Q. than he could. I guess we'll just have to keep this study in mind and do what we can to prevent it from coming true.
What do you do to make sure your kids get equal treatment?