The Disadvantages of Being An Only Child
Siblings are an important support system that only children do not have
Are you an only child?
We all know the phrase “Lonely Only.”
How about “singleton?”
Every child has a path to follow in life.
You may think you know the advantages of being an only child, but there are some disadvantages as well.
Sure it’s great to get gifts and have extra attention paid to you that you don’t have to share with a grubby little brother or nosy little sister.
But, you learn life lessons from other siblings in your family.
When a child grows up alone, there is no one to share the experiences of those life lessons.
Growing up without brothers or sisters influences how an individual’s personality or behavior traits form. They could be more selfish, not wanting to share anything with others.
Also, an only child does not know how to interact with others in particular situations.
Did you know that National Only Child Day will be celebrated on April 12, 2020?
Some of the disadvantages of being a lonely only are:
- Always being alone. Having friends is not the same as having brothers or sisters for companions.
- Feeling lonely and sad.
- The child may become introverted.
- The child may not allow for shortcomings in others, instead always looking for perfection.
- Having a one sided view of life, as there is no way to make comparisons.
- There is no built in support system to help face everyday fears and disappointments.
- Loyalty from friends is very important to an only child, so when disloyalty is displayed it can be very hard to understand on one’s own.
An only child may find it hard to ask for help or ask someone just to listen to them, as they feel the need to handle everything on their own.
Do only children have a better relationship with their parents?
I did not.
My mother was a hovering, suffocating person.
She wanted me to do all the things that she failed to do in her life.
My father was a difficult personality. He was a very unhappy soul and he passed that unhappiness around to everyone around him.
Because of this, I had very few friends come to visit at my house.
“Father Knows Best” it wasn’t. (In case you don’t know, Father Knows Best was a very popular program in the 60’s and you can still view it today if you search on the Internet.)
At age 18 I wanted to move out of the house as quickly as possible. I finally managed that by marrying my first husband when I was 19. He, too, was an only child!
He was neglected by his mother. She treated him like he was a doll, not a person. His father totally doted on his mother, often shoving my husband aside to please her.
His view of family life was distorted. He DEFINITELY did not want children.
He became a very self centered, selfish person.
This trait did not show up when we were dating, but after we were married, everything changed. It was all about him, whatever he wanted.
For example, he had a two week vacation and I assumed we would have a honeymoon, but instead, he played golf with his buddies.
Needless to say, I was not happy!
Happy Wife, Happy Life! NOT!
Our marriage ended after 8 tumultuous years.
Looking back I see personality traits in both of us that were formed by being only children.
Personally, I do not think that only children should marry only children. The family unit is just too small.
So, today the family that I have is the one I created. No children, only dogs.
As I got older, like late 20’s I was afraid to have kids, thinking that I would be a terrible parent, basing that on my opinion of family life that I endured.
I am still a “lonely only” thinking thoughts that were formed many years ago. I continue to search for the benefits of being an only child.
When parents decide to have just one child they should really discuss what kind of life that little person will have from birth to adulthood.
It might change things.