(Closed) One child family

posted 6 years ago in Parenting
Post # 20
Member
982 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I love having an only child.  We go on 8-10 vacations a year (including long weekends).  We brought him to 4 different countries alone last year!  We don’t spoil him, but he has what he wants without it being a financial burden.  I can work, do stuff around the house, and meet friends without feeling guilty about leaving a bunch of kids (or my husband with a houseful of kids.)

 

 

 

His college will be paid for, up to master’s if he wants it.  We do fun stuff all the time like sledding, water parks, we read books to him every night for at least 20 minutes, I volunteer at his school….

 

 

 

Honestly I couldn’t even THINK of having more than one.  I do hear about only children and socialization and all that jazz about how it’s a burden when they grow up, but I figured hey, we do a lot with his friends already and live in a city, plus, we all have our “burdens” in life to deal with, he should be grateful that his is “just” being an only child.  πŸ˜›

 

ETA:  I also LOVE how I can have time with my husband.  We have an awesome marriage, because we can concentrate on “us” and have fun together and not just a houseful of kids!

 

Post # 21
Member
1019 posts
Bumble bee

I will preface this post by saying that I don’t really have much first-hand experiences with only children. The closest my family has come to having only children was probably my dad’s childhood. While he had three much older siblings (anywhere from 14-20 years older than he was), his father and two of his siblings immigrated to the United States from Argentina several years before immigration reform. So for much of that time, it was just my dad and his mother, who wasn’t allowed in the US until after the immigration laws were loosened.

Anyway, I am the youngest of four children. While I’m not the closest to my siblings at this point, I don’t think that my parents would have been able to raise a well-rounded only child. To this day, we have no family friends, so unless my parents would have seen their value with an only child, that sibling of mine would have been pretty lonely.

But that’s my family, not yours. Most families are more balanced than mine is. Besides, having an only child is often a circumstance more than it is a choice (whether due to the parents’ ages, infertility, or any other factors).

IMO, you should keep an open mind to both sides until you’re a parent. Then you’ll be more informed when making your decision. πŸ™‚

Post # 23
Member
1443 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

My daughter is an only child; she will be 24 this year.  She does not miss having a sibling (she has told me so).  She has cousins as well as tons of friends (many of whom she has known since grade school).  Her dad and I divorced when she was 7 (he was not an involved parent and moved out of state after we split).  As a single parent, it would have been difficult to give her the upbringing she had if there had been more than one child.

 

ETA:  I grew up with siblings, and I am not close with any of them; we have nothing in common other than being related. 

 

Post # 24
Member
1400 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

@Hermoine:  I don’t have kids and when I do, I think I want two.

But I had a coworker at my last job who was around 40 ish and has an only child, who is now a teenage girl. She loved it. We talked about it a couple times and she really likes it because she can give her only child all her attention and all the extra money for things like art schools and music lessons and what not. 

Honestly, I think as long as you get your kid out to meet other kids then there’s not huge problem. I know lots of only children who turned out just fine πŸ˜‰

Post # 27
Member
730 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

@Hermoine:  I am the parent of two children, (Step mom to 2 more) but the only child of an only child of an only child πŸ™‚ 

I LOVED, and continue to LOVE, being an only child. My parents were able to provide for me in ways that they never could have if had had siblings. They were working class folks, but their means were stretched farther for me, being an only. I especially see that now, as I’ve struggled to provide for two, single & married. 

The most important thing I gained being an only was that I matured and was comfortable in my own skin at a very young age. That is to say, I learned to be responsible for my own happiness and contentment quite young. I learned how to never be lonely when alone. How to entertain myself and not depend on others for anything, really. I gained a level of self confidence and wisdom beyond my years at a very young age. A lot of folks would scoff at this and say “yeah but you never really got to act like a kid!” A grain of truth to that but it’s overwhelmingly proven a benefit and not a detriment to me in adulthood. 

From my perspective, at any given age, I’ve not once seen an example of sibling relationships I was ever “envious” of, or could readily see a real “pro” to, or advantage to, compared to my station in life. In fact, more often than not, the relationships I’ve been close to are complicated, dramatic, and sometimes downright contentious. I see this even in my own children and step children. (NOT to say that wonderful sibling relationships don’t exist!!) 

I do understand the important role culture plays in family, but ultimately, you and your husband are the only two humans on the planet that are responsible for growing up another human. Have the first one first, then decide πŸ˜‰ 

Post # 28
Member
982 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

@Hermoine:  

 

I can say I’m a far, FAR better mom BECAUSE I can do those things.  Having to chase after multiple kids would make me one crabby assed wife, mother, and person in general.  Its WAY better to be an awesome mom of one than a mediocre mom of multiples (and that is what it’d be like for me!)

Post # 31
Member
4426 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

My husband is an only child and he says there are both benefits and disadvantages. Sadly, he didn’t have the same type of childhood that many other posters mentioned. He said the good was that there was no arguing or fighting with siblings. The bad was that he was pretty lonely at times. His mom and stepdad chose to live in a really small town and he had no kids near his house. He would go to school, come home and be alone most of the time. On the complete opposite side of things, I have two sisters. We are very close now, but had some wicked fights when we were younger. We were still super close as kids which I think attributed to the arguments, but it was a lot of work for my parents, who both worked full time and at times in our early childhood were in school pursuing advanced degrees. I love my sisters and couldn’t imagine life without them. My husband and I know we would like 2 children, but I know that isn’t set in stone until we actually become parents. If you want one, have one and then go from there.

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