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How Early are Personality Traits Formed?

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     Last week our twin grandsons were born without Caesarian section.  Brendan appeared first at six pounds, four ounces.  He had been in the "ready" position for over a month.  Then Jeffrey appeared, in the breach position.  Fortunately, through manipulation he was brought out butt first and began to breathe after thirty seconds.  He weighed five pounds, fourteen ounces.  Both boys had fair complexions like their sister and dark blue eyes.  Within a week of nursing they had gained the half-pound back, lost in the hospital.  We are all ecstatic!

     The boys are fraternal twins; they were in separate sacks.  They are very similar in appearance, but not exactly alike.  And their behavior is definitely different.  Brendon nurses, sleeps, and has to be awakened to feed again.  Jeffrey, on the other hand, has a smaller stomach and is hungry earlier.  He nurses, squirms, stays awake, sleeps, and squawks when his stomach is hungry.    This led my husband and me to wonder, "Can personality traits be formed in the womb?"

     Brendan, in the downward position, was labeled "Baby A" before birth.  His brother Jeffrey, lying above him, was labeled "Baby B."  Our son and daughter-in-law told us the story of their watching a kiddie movie one evening with their two-and-one-half-year-old daughter.  Suddenly they were witnessing a fight in the womb.  Brendan was stretching his arms out for space and his fists protruded against our daughter-in-law's belly.  Another enormous hump in her belly began to roll toward his brother and suddenly a leg kicked downward against Brendan, then another kick.  Their two-year-old sister left the room, thinking the turmoil was hurting her mother.

     Jeffrey fought for space in the upper sack.  He had to fight to take his first breath.  Now he is the feisty one, six ounces smaller than his brother and hungier more quickly.   He has the same large hands and feet as his brother, but his eyes are open more and we are getting to know him better. 

      I had always believed that birth order was a huge determinant of personality, and I still do.  But physical positioning in the womb and the experience of birth being determinants?  We'll see...........What do you think?