September 27, 2010
August 6, 2010
August 5, 2010
July 19, 2010
Living life as an only child is, at times, similar to being born blind and blamed for it. People anticipate you're a brat because your parents didn't spit out a few extra siblings to "round out" your personality. I've lived with the only child label for thirty years and only recently feel vindicated.
According to The Only Child: Debunking the Myths article in the July 19, 2010 issue of TIME Magazine, more American families are choosing the method of one and done. Citing reasons from financials to women bearing children at more advanced ages, only children are born and raised at a rate of 1 in 5 today, almost doubling the number of only children in America since the 1960's.
The perception of the only child as spoiled and selfish began 120 years ago thanks to the work of Granville Stanley Hall, deemed history's first child psychologist. After conducting a famous study in 1896, he concluded that only children were ill-equipt to adjust to life because they lacked siblings. And, ever since his study was conducted and research published, we only children have suffered the label of "spoiled, selfish, solitary misfits".
Apparently, most of society forgets the part where only children are forced with greater pressure to make friends and adjust in social situations. We don't have the sibling to lean on at a party or day care. Instead, we must learn early on how to adapt and make friends. Also, most folks don't realize that only children (at least the ones like me) play by themselves a lot. As a result, we tend to be independent and free thinking. Not bad characteristics if you ask me.
Perhaps this article is not the most unbiased. The author is an only child herself raising a daughter who she thinks will be an only child as well. But, in spite of possible bias, the author also knows the only child scene like only an only would.
The link to the article is included above. Check it out for yourself and make decisions based on what's best for your family. Onlies can be cool, raised in the right environment, just as kids with siblings can become great when brought up with good values. My two cents are this: It's not the number you have, it's the way you teach them.