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Old 19-08-23, 12:33
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Default Judging ages

My parents moved to what would be my childhood home in 1953. I shared a birthday with my next door neighbour, and with the boy next door but one, born in 1945.

The family were a cut above us. Father was a school teacher. They named their dog after a holiday on a Scottish island, and they were artistic, with paintings on the wall.

There were three children. The boy was the eldest, always repairing motorcycles. The sisters were much friendlier, despite being older than sib and me.

The younger sister, born 1951, had to get married. My last memory of her is her heading for the church, her white wedding dress emphasising a large bump.

As I remember it, the elder girl went to university in the late 1960s, working in a jam factory (fine on day one, horrid by the end of the week) in the holidays. So I would have put her dob around 1948.

Out of curiosity, I searched for them. The youngest child has a relatively uncommon name, and I've found her. I went on to check births... and there are only two. No sign of anyone resembling the middle child born between 1946 and 1950.

What, however there is, is a birth of a girl with the right name, right district, born in 1945 (less than nine months difference from the boy) with a different mmn.

It looks as if she was actually a cousin - though possibly not a blood relation. The teacher's brother married before WW2. One girl born 1939, and her sister in 1945. I assume he divorced. Ancestry trees only show a second marriage in 1948.

If I'm right, my parents would have known this middle child from when she was about seven years old. They would have seen a change of uniform when she was eleven. Even if they suspected anything unusual, they certainly wouldn't have shared it with me, but would I really have got the middle child's age wrong by three years?
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Old 19-08-23, 13:36
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When I was probably between 4 and 6, my friend Johanna sometimes had her cousin to stay and she would be sent out with us. The cousin was older than us, and I’m going to have to look her up now, aren’t I, but without looking her up, I have no idea whether she would have been, for example, 11 or 14.

EDIT: Despite in my memory seeming very grown up, the cousin was only five years older than me and six years older than my friend, so in answer to your question, I think from a child's perspective it is very easy to misjudge ages.
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Old 19-08-23, 14:03
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As the result of idle curiosity on a wet Sunday, I was extremely startled to discover how many of my school friends were the fruit of irregular unions, lol. I went to a Grammar school and in my memory, all the parents were extremely respectable, including a GP who did not marry until the daughter was 25! At the time, I was aware that one school mate was adopted because of the trauma he suffered when he found out, but I now think two more were adopted as I can find no birth registration for them.

Lots of re registrations when the parents eventually married, always well away from our town. I don't judge anyone's morals, it was during the war and just after, but I do judge the hypocrisy, lol.

What I'm trying to say is that you may not have misjudged her age, you may simply have misjudged the situation - informal (or formal) adoption, a different birth name etc. I know of at least two families who took on a relative's child, one formally, another informally (which caused huge problems for him, because they changed his name to theirs).

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Old 19-08-23, 14:48
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Having spent an entire holiday playing with a boy who appeared on the final day wearing her dress to go home, I cannot accuse myself of being very observant!

Beryl, who took me to Sunday School when I was little, I thought must be as old as the hills. Turned out she was fourteen.
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Old 19-08-23, 15:05
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Of course, the alternative solution is that she wasn't born in this country.

Husband wife and son set off for Canada in 1948. Husband wife son and baby daughter aged 11 months returned in 1949!
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Old 19-08-23, 15:12
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I remember some little girls calling my sister "Aunty" when she was nearly 10.
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Old 20-08-23, 11:20
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There were several families where I growing up whose nephews and nieces were the same age as my friends.
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Old 20-08-23, 11:41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiterunner View Post
I remember some little girls calling my sister "Aunty" when she was nearly 10.
My grandmother was born on 14 September 1892. Her youngest uncle was born on 16 October 1891.

The younger of Mr Nomad's paternal uncle was 13 years younger than the oldest. By the time he was born, Grandma had pretty much lost interest and my MIL tacked him on to her family. Sometimes the generations get mixed up.
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Old 20-08-23, 13:52
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Sorry, I should have explained that my sister was not the girls' aunt.
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Old 20-08-23, 17:21
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With big families nieces and nephews took their uncle and aunts to school as they were older than them.
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