Anonymous

What Are The Problems Of The Only Child?

30 Answers

Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I can't believe all the BS I'm reading on this page!

I am an only child. My parents, like every parent out there (the good ones a least) did the best they could.

I am rarely ever lonely. I was given a fabulous gift of being able to make friends easily. What's that myth about being socially awkward? BS! My parents are military and we moved every three years. I'm sure some of you pseudo-psychologists would just gasp at the horrors of making an only child move every three years. "The horrors!" But guess what, it's taught me a very amazing lesson. Flexibility. Now I have friends who live all over the world. Where I live currently, I have a tight and fabulous group of friends that I consider family. When my home was broken into two years ago, these friends all came out in support offering to help my husband and I clean up our home to offering us a safe place to live until we could move to giving us money *lol*. Yet, I have several friends who can't even speak to their brothers or sisters due to stupid sibling rivalries from childhood that never got resolved.

Granted - I miss my mom and dad. We get to see each other once or twice a year. But I have learned that if you're heart is open, "family" is waiting for you wherever you go.

Yes, there was stress growing up - I'm sure it was the same for any first child. Parents, good ones anyway, worry about their ability as parents. The first and only child is often the guinea pig for their parenting skills (what works and what doesn't). But again, I'd not change one dang thing my parents did. I love them. My dad is my hero. My mom is my heroine. They taught me character. They taught me laughter. They taught me how to be an individual and independence.

I work with college aged students now. I see what "over-parenting" looks like. And it has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the child is an only or has siblings.

You want to group and generalized. Go generalize yourself.
Will Martin Profile
Will Martin answered
The stereotype of the only child is harsh - spoilt, over-protected, egocentric and lacking in independence and social skills. Is there any truth in this?
Well, research suggests that the biggest single problem faced by only children is their sense that people perceive them in this stereotypical way! They often feel out of place in a society that assumes it's normal to have siblings; though this perception is changing as families get smaller.
Apart from this sense of being "different" there is not much evidence that only children suffer unduly from the expected problems such as over-dependence, being unable to share etc. Certainly, these thing can arise in small families, but most children soon outgrow them, especially if their parents encourage them to be sociable and self-reliant. In fact, statistically only children are slightly more likely to succeed academically and in the workplace.
However, there is one problem often reported by only children, especially later in life: it can be a very lonely state. Many people deeply regret not having had siblings as they grow older.
There is a website for only children which includes a list of books on the subject:
www.onlychild.org.uk
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
The most eminent problem of the only child is loneliness. Having no siblings to chat with when they have problems, especially family problems which they could hardly talk to others, would make them feel depressed and helpless. When they grow up, they would take all the burden and pressure to look after their parents. And the worst thing is when their parents are ill, they have no one to turn to,or to share their feelings with, which would be much easier to overcome if they have siblings.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I am from a family of three siblings...unfortunately I don't really speak to my sister cause she has always had a grudge  against me, my younger brother I see once in a while, just because we are very busy.  I have 1 child with my husband, no other children. We are able to travel a lot, he goes to a private school and will remain in one because we want to give him the best education and since we only have 1 child we can afford to pay for private school.  He has friends over every weekend for sleepovers, he plays sports and is very smart and not lonely.  He sometimes use to ask for a sister or brother but when he sees his friends fighting with thier siblings he changes his mind real fast. It was not in the cards for us to have a second child, but he  will not be fighting anyone for inheritance...since he is an only child.....LOL! Sometimes $$ is a major factor for more than one child...daycare alone can cost more than your average mortgage.  No my child is not lonely...he is very busy and has friends, and we have a very good relationship with him..
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I'm 16 and I am an only child. I often wish I had a elder or even younger sibling to keep me company. Only childs are said to be spoiled by there parents and are as stubborn as can be. As for me and a lot of others it's a different story. There are both pros and cons though. If you have an only child you will be able to devot a lot of attention to them and not have to worry about not spending enough time or too much time with one child and not the other.
maggie alderson Profile
maggie alderson answered
My husband is an only child and has no regrets.I think he developed a very good imagination and did a lot of reading and has a great relationship with his parents.There was no need to spoil him,he wasn't competing with a sibling.They spent a lot of time with him,and he is the most diplomatic and fair,loving husband-he has absolutely no issues that would relate to being an only child.

My nephew is also an only child and also has developed a fantastic imagination and in being an only child and with limited resources they are able to send him to many more educational programs;sports etc. and he actually says he enjoys having friends but doesn't regret being an only child;and I don't see any developmental problems yet. I think it is how you decide to raise them.
thanked the writer.
Anonymous
Anonymous commented
I have one child who is 4yo (not by choice), everything is focused more on her because there is no other siblings of course, however our world does not revolve around her only and I make sure she understands that sometimes things can't go her way all the time. I'm very conscious about her being on her own, she has a great network of friends & interacts very well with them and kinder friends teacher has found her to be very considerate and not manipulative at all in fact she is kind & considerate
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I'm going through a difficult time right now as an only child,I'm grown up but my mother doesnt want to let go of me.She's constantly making me feel guilty for things that she say. It hurts so much & I'm just worrying as to would she have been the same if I wasnt her only child.people are starting to make fun of the way she treats me,I feel like I'm  at one place I can't move. The guilt moves with me every step of the way its inside of me.don't get me wrong I love her but sometimes I wonder isn't it because I feel sorry for her, I just don't know what to do outsiders are expecting a lot from me.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
As a now 50 year old only child, I can honestly say that I was brought up to share, respect elders, be polite in all situations and basically be a people pleaser (doormat). Childhood and young adult years were wonderful: I was well liked by adults and peers because I was so emotionally, socially and verbally mature from spending so much time around proper adults.  HOWEVER, the past several years have been lonely, isolated and more "doormat" as there is NO one to confront/oppose  parents' obvious controlling/manipulative/fabrications!!  They are so smug in their beliefs, yet there is no one to assist in recourse in "setting them straight in reality".   Just have to suck up and shut up.  It is SO powerless/depressing to be "had" by parents who still think they "know" everything-yet do NOT!!  Being divorced with 3 college age children and a "dead beat" ex husband does not help!
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Hi, I'm 16 and I am an only child. The problem is caused by parents. They develop the behavior that an only child has. My parents even know are constantly worrying about what I do, and everything they do is based on me. They themselves do not know what to do with themselves when I am not around and it makes it harder for me to be a normal 16 year old.
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Sue Dunlap
Sue Dunlap commented
Do what makes you feel good and dont worry about them. They already lived their lives! Seriouslyyyy,....
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Seriously, you can't generalise just because of the situation that someone was born into. All of you on this page suggesting that only children are lonely, awkward, can't share etc what about you? What about the stereotypes of those born first or last? If your all going to jump on the bandwagon of criticising only children perhaps you should look at the way your described by experts? Its pathetic and frustrating as an only child to have to defend yourself and your family constantly because theres only one of you. There are so many variables in the way that all of us were brought up, making a generalisation about one little group is ignorant. Grow up, move on and find something else to complain about, its ridiculous.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I'm a 13 year old only child, and I HATE it. I'm home alone all the time, I get the pressures of stereotypes at school, I'm extremely lonely all the time...right now I'm alone at my house, bored to death, and lonely. I beg my parents to let me hang out with my friends a lot, but a lot of the times they don't let me...ugh...
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I struggle with this I had a son when I was 19  and hubby didnt want anymore . Hes making friends and seems happy .I now feel happy with one but then I get days where I see kids together or feel the house is quite and guilt consumes me .hes 10 this year do I have another or do I embrace having one
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
There really is no problem of being an only child. The only problem is that you do not have a sibling to grow up with and be close with. You miss out on being able to have that sibling to have all the time in your life no matter what. That is the only problem.
Sue Dunlap Profile
Sue Dunlap answered
What the hell are most of y'all talking about?! I'm an only child and I hate it! I got teased most of my life for it/beat up at times. I have bad memories of having nobody to play with and nobody to do stuff with. When I needed advice or someone to talk to guess what... NOBODY was there. And I will never know the feeling of being an aunt to a brother or sister's child. I have hated my parents my whole life for not having any other children and always will.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered

If an only child is spoiled by his or her parents, then sibling-rich folks are spoiled by society, because people with siblings are the majority and raised in loud, socialized environments and society is designed by the majority and caters to them. Quiet folks are demonized by society and onlies are demonized by society.

Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Yah right, most of us doesn't know how to relate with other people, Especially when it's a small family, like mine. And it makes me sad after having a good time with friends and ended up alone when I got home.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
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Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
As an only child there are quite a few less than desirable effects it can cause.  Parents may expect to much of you and every mistake that you make is amplified.  There is no one else who has a chance of survive in life its just you and you have to be the best.  Anxiety issues and depression issues for due to unreal amounts of stress.  Parents use you to take their emotions out on so they feel better about themselves.  Drinking and drugs become your closest friend.  Isolationism is the only way for you to feel safe.  You can feel like you can''t express your emotions to anyone or show them at all because that makes you weak.   Hostility can be very common especially in situations that involve someone insulting your friends.  Since you do feel alone you stop caring what happens to you.  Paranoia takes over since there seems to be no one there to protect you.  But the worst thing is since no one is there to talk to you start talking to yourself, and loose control of your sense of reality.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Well I'm 20yrs, and I'm a good son. I want to please and obey my parents very desire. But I would ove to make some mistakes. I can't ask for better parents. Just that sometimes they are kinda too controlling and basically don't want me to be exposed to any risk whatsoever... Don't want me to get hurt in anyway. But I just want to learn for myself live to some extent without limits. Be able in the future maybe to say to my 20yr old "I can tell you from experience son". My gf love each other very much, but she was married before. For me it was a mistake. But for them they don't accept cause of that mistake she made. Now they don't want me with her and they don't want me to see her anymore. And if I leave them. It would hurt like hell and I loose out on my inheritance. But inheritance part doesn't bother me much. And if I leave my gf it hurts me and her. So I don;t really know what to do... So it's like having to choose between my 2 heart beats. And that like killing me slowly. Any advise?
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
A child who has problems with memory and attention and whose intellectual abilities las behind his or her chronological age would be described as having?
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Anonymous
Anonymous commented
My son is 13 and an only child. I'm not and have always felt guilty about this. He spends alot of time with his 7yr old cousin as my sister and I are really close. This causes lots of problems as he just doesn't seem to be able to be nice to him and winds him up constantly. My sis and I end up arguing and he just doesn't seem to care. He is very forgetful in general and always has been. He gets into trouble at school because he doesn't do his homework because he 'forgets'. I'm so worried..
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I'm an only child and it sucks. Really. When my parents leaves me, I feel like I'm the only person left in the world.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I am on only child and it is very lonely, I'm in my 40's I am not an Aunt and my children have no cousins or aunts or uncles, it stinks, don't ever do that to a kid.
Emma  Jackson Profile
Emma Jackson answered
The child may get lonely and want a little or big brother or sister to play with or look out for them, or they may be cocky or spoilt as the parent has no other children to indulge
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
The best thing in life is having a brother or sister, the worst is having no one at all. Brothers and sisters are treasures, gift from God, name it and it's true.

Being the only child is just an empty space, no friends can ever substitute a brother or a sister. There's no way someone can love another as a brother or sister the way real siblings will love one another. Period.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
This is a stupid perception of the only child. They are spoiled and don't know how to relate to others. I have a husband that was an only child, and he thinks everything should always go his way.
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Gillian Smith
Gillian Smith commented
This isn't true of the majority of only children. People who are part of large families can be spoiled and want everything to go their own way, this is what some people do.

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