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Does a baby’s personality indicate how they’ll be when they’re older?

(23 Posts)
2020newmum Wed 30-Dec-20 11:59:35

I’m just curious really. My 8 month old DS is quite a chilled out baby who smiles and laughs a lot. He’s also very content with his own company and loves exploring and playing with his toys. I’ve noticed friends’ babies of similar age will strain to get to other babies and interact with them, whereas DS will mostly ignore other babies and prefers playing on his own. He’s often cautious around other adults to begin with (and sometimes tearful) but relaxes after a short while.

My question is, does any of this indicate what he might be like when he’s older? Could he be a chilled out, smiley baby but a really moody and difficult toddler for example? Will he always prefer his own company to that of others? Interested to hear other people’s experiences!

OP’s posts: |
plumpootle Wed 30-Dec-20 12:31:57

Your baby sounds a lot like my DD was - she's now 4. She is still easy going, can be reasoned with, likes and needs her own space, plays alone for a fair bit most days. Very good sense of humour. But. Also quite confrontational with little friends, prefers to be in control when playing with other kids, gets a bit overwhelmed at the start of social gatherings - feels shy. So not as uncomplicated as she was at 8 months! But has retained a lot of her early character.

ProfYaffle Wed 30-Dec-20 12:35:21

I think the broad personality traits stay the same. Eg my dd1 was a shy baby who didn't like going to people she didn't know, dd2 was much more outgoing and easier to leave with babysitters.

They're teenagers now and still the same, dd1 much more introverted and dd2 more sociable.

cariadlet Wed 30-Dec-20 12:35:46

We used to call dd Dr Serious when she was a baby because she wasn't particularly smiley and she used to like sitting and watching others, especially at baby groups.

She turned out to be very confident and is way more outgoing and sociable than me and dp.

PatchworkElmer Wed 30-Dec-20 12:36:07

DS (4) much more social now than he was as a baby. He was quite shy but will happily talk to/ play with anyone now- I do wonder if this is to do with lockdown though. He’s so excited to interact with anyone new now!

He is also quite stroppy (because he’s 4). But he can be reasoned with and it’s incredibly rare for him to totally ‘lose the plot’.

YouBoughtMeAWall Wed 30-Dec-20 12:39:22

Based on my own two Dc I think so. DS1 was very easy baby, went into a routine and slept well, could take him anywhere, he was no bother at all, and as a teen he’s the same, he’s very laid back, easy going, goes with the flow, doesn’t get bothered by much. DS2 was constantly awake, always needing attention, making noise, losing his temper, hard work. He’s exactly the same now as a pre teen. Still very hard work! grin

lavenderlou Wed 30-Dec-20 12:39:53

DD2 almost never cried as a baby - perhaps because I'd had a bad time breastfeeding DC1 so I offered DD2 a breast every time she so much as whimpered. She was also very serious and quiet.

Sadly from the age of 1 she was prone to the most horrific tantrums and still cries at the drop of a hat aged 8! She now has a very bubbly personality, loves drama and laughs all the time. So no, not for me.

Ultimateblends Wed 30-Dec-20 12:41:46

plumpootle

Your baby sounds a lot like my DD was - she's now 4. She is still easy going, can be reasoned with, likes and needs her own space, plays alone for a fair bit most days. Very good sense of humour. But. Also quite confrontational with little friends, prefers to be in control when playing with other kids, gets a bit overwhelmed at the start of social gatherings - feels shy. So not as uncomplicated as she was at 8 months! But has retained a lot of her early character.

This could be a description of my DS, hes now almost 7, and the above applies to him too.

WhispersOfWickedness Wed 30-Dec-20 12:43:08

Nope, not in the case of my DC. First child was very smiley and sociable as a baby and toddler. Now he's 11, he's definitely an introvert, who has a very small group of close friends, is not really up for socialising with large groups of people and loves time on his own. Second child was a very grumpy baby, hated other people (except me), very shy. Now she's 9 and a social butterfly, she loves nothing more than to be with other people and talk at them ALL THE TIME... the rest of us are introverts, so it can be a bit of a struggle in our house sometimes grin

Caspianberg Wed 30-Dec-20 12:45:32

I hope not! Ds age 8 months is hard work. Screams if I move more than a few cm from him, is into everything and Doesn’t sleep.

parsnipsnotsprouts Wed 30-Dec-20 12:50:09

Dd was always 'on the ball' giving me knowing looks since she was tiny. She was also high needs and wanted a lot of attention. At 7 nothing gets past her and she's still pretty demanding. Yes I think they have their own little personalities from early

Strokethefurrywall Wed 30-Dec-20 13:06:56

I wondered this and it has been the case for my two boys.

DS1 was a very structured baby, liked routine, very into everything, interactive and wanted to be involved. As a toddler he was a damn hurricane, had no fear and went everywhere at lightning speed, and exhaustingly active.

As a 9 year old he gets stressed if his routine changes, asks a million questions, is very Ernest, needs someone to play with him a lot, still can't sit still, has to go everywhere fast, and gets the validation from human contact.

DS2 just sat and giggled for the first year of his life, watching the world go by. As a toddler he was easy going, cautious but happy to play by himself and very imaginative. He used to make up characters with his hands and play for hours.

As a 6 year old he's much the same. Happy to hang by himself and do his own thing, less active but has a wicked sense of humor and can understand the nuance of jokes that his brother can't quite get yet.

Both personalities are, at the moment, complimentary of each other thankfully, and they love each other fiercely!

Abouttimemum Wed 30-Dec-20 13:53:25

DS was an exceptionally difficult baby and didn’t really get any easier until about 8 months. He’s almost 2 now and no bother. I wouldn’t call him chilled, but he’s happy and generally hilarious and I don’t really have any trouble with him.
I think all babies do the parallel play thing until they are about 3. DS has always played on his own, and when I watch through the window at nursery, they’re all playing alone or just next to each other.

DecemberDiana Wed 30-Dec-20 13:58:08

My kids were not properly interested in other kids until about 3. One is particularly sociable with great groups of friends and this only started to manifest at primary school.

I think the calmness had translated into being nice to be around. But there is also a drive there to make contact and need for company that arrived far later.

shivermetimbers77 Wed 30-Dec-20 14:00:26

There are a lot of psychological research studies which suggest that a person’s basic temperament (eg how reactive/sensitive/outgoing/novelty-seeking a person is) is relatively stable throughout life, but overall ‘personality’ is made up of others factors such as experience and environment and is much more variable.

Girlwhowearsglasses Wed 30-Dec-20 14:06:36

My DS1 was absolutely 💯 % fully formed personality wise even before birth. Before I detail that I'll caveat it with the probability that a) all mums probably believe this and b) it's conformation bias + a self-fulfiling prophecy but still...

Didn't want to be born until he was ready - failed induction at 40+12. Not ready.

Never slept. Never wanted to sleep

Wouldn't eat food until he could pick it up and put it in his mouth himself.

Would never be told how to do anything.

He's 14 now. Nothing has changed - he has ADHD and his body clock is unreliable when it comes to sleep time, he learns in his own sweet way and has to make his own mistakes; I've never been able to help him do homework, ever. He's exceptionally clever and determined.

ByersRd Wed 30-Dec-20 14:18:39

We laugh about one of mine. Born upside down...should have been the first sign!
He still 'does his own thing' in his own way. The only child in his primary to wear a tie...he didn't care what others thought.

He was always a 'dallier', last to wake up, even Christmas Day. Last to get dressed, last minute to put on his shoes but so laid back about it. It's transferred!
Last minute degree assignments, last minute job application forms. Well timed walks to the bus, to have it waiting at the stop, just to step onto...yet it all always works out for him. 😂

YouBoughtMeAWall Wed 30-Dec-20 14:23:19

The only child in his primary to wear a tie...he didn't care what others thought.

I love this!!

RaininSummer Wed 30-Dec-20 14:38:16

My children are now adults and many of the traits displayed as young children did stay with them.

Dauphinois Wed 30-Dec-20 14:48:14

In my experience with my own children, yes.

One in particular was very hard work as a baby, wanted to be held and lapped up attention. Now at 9 he still thrives on attention and can be the most demanding of my lot. He's also very driven and determined and will be very successful in life I'm sure.

The other 3 are much more chilled out, easy company but probably less likely to be a 'high flier'.

Time will tell if I'm right or not!

mistletoeandsigh Wed 30-Dec-20 14:50:45

Eldest was very chilled and still is at ten. She's got strong opinions but is reasonable. She was reasonable even as a toddler! My second charges at everything. He's 3.5 now and was quite a big crier as a baby! Doesn't cry a lot now, but won't listen at all.

kateybeth79 Wed 30-Dec-20 15:09:06

Not in my experience.

TrySarahTops Wed 30-Dec-20 15:22:15

Yes, at least until my dc hit puberty.

DD1: In the womb, very active... would do her 25 movements by 8am... very active baby, very demanding, loved her food and easily bored. Ended up becoming a little ball of energy and throughout her childhood did competitive gymnastics, training 20 hours a week. She still had masses of energy on top of that. Now she's a teenager, she has calmed down massively, and for the first time loves her bed and sleep. But she does still love her food!

DD2 was much more laid back, rarely cried and was a happy little soul. Far less energetic. Growing up, she had a much more easy going personality, happy to let her older sister have her way on disagreements etc... but now she's a teenager, hormones abound and she's not as easy going any more!!

But it will be interesting to see how their personalities settle once we've emerged from puberty.

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