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Old 06-01-2009, 05:03 PM
 
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[quote=Hobgoblin;9086776]
And you know, it's really easy for someone with no siblings to say "I wish I had a brother/sister". It's not as easy for someone with siblings to admit that wished they didn't. People would think you were a horrible person! So you're not going to get a whole lot of people responding with a "gee, I'm one of three, but I wish my two siblings had never been born 'cause I would have preferred to be an only child."


My DD says it all the time, but I think she's only half joking. Then again she's got 3 younger brothers to deal with.
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hobgoblin View Post
It's not as easy for someone with siblings to admit that wished they didn't. People would think you were a horrible person! So you're not going to get a whole lot of people responding with a "gee, I'm one of three, but I wish my two siblings had never been born 'cause I would have preferred to be an only child."
I think all firstborns go through a phase when the say that actually. Also the baby of the family gets told he/she was found in a trashcan or in the ditch. It is all part of sibling relationships.
And middle children like myself get ignored all the time.
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:33 PM
 
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My son is an only basically because I didn't like being pregnant and financially we cannot afford more kids. He also has a few issues...

He is well adjusted and very loving and not selfish (people think onlies are selfish). I love kids and think if you want X number that is your business. Some people spend their days pointing out why this is better than that but you have to do what is right for you.

He does have Asperger Syndrome *slight case* and some physical challenges (minor) so who knows, our 'next kid' could have had severe autism as these things are often genetic.

A lady in our support group has 3 kids. First has AS, the second is pretty badly autistic, the third has other issues..so who knows??

One thing I feel is that you cannot have kids and expect they will stick around for your needs.

Do NOT have kids to be your 'support system' and your caregivers because you are 'afraid of being alone.' You could have 5 rotten kids.

My son reminds me very much of my best friend from the time I was 11 until I got married. She was an only child, very creative, sort of socially inept, always trying to prove herself to her peers, but I (as her best friend) accepted her totally and I hope someday my son finds someone like that.
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:50 PM
 
Location: San Marcos, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzie02 View Post
I think all firstborns go through a phase when the say that actually. Also the baby of the family gets told he/she was found in a trashcan or in the ditch. It is all part of sibling relationships.
And middle children like myself get ignored all the time.
Oh of course, as kids it's to be expected. I was thinking more along the lines of adults and their opinions on having/not having siblings.
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:59 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hobgoblin View Post
Oh of course, as kids it's to be expected. I was thinking more along the lines of adults and their opinions on having/not having siblings.
I think that by the time you are an adult you can't picture your life any other way. JMHO.
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:30 PM
 
Location: Land of 10000 Lakes +
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaykay View Post
Yes, and I don't want to belabor this thing and take it too far off topic. Please don't think I don't recognize that any child is an individual. Naturally, the pain of that loss will be felt just as acutely. And sometimes there are other issues to deal with such as how the siblings are faring with this loss and being able to deal with their needs when you are grieving so hard yourself. ( One mom who had also lost her son in a car accident but had either 4 or 5 remaining children told me that the death of the one had "ruined their entire family." ) So you just never know...

But my point to the OP is this, if you have an "only" and something happens to your "only" that's it as far as enjoying your children goes. When even your very close friends are sharing holidays with their grown chldren and grandchildren, you may be sharing the holiday alone. When your friends are enjoying and celebrating their children's graduations, weddings, etc., you will not be. These kind of issues don't go away. So it's something to think about.
As a mother who lost a grown son last year out of four adult children, Kaykay is right. Every single person has unique and special qualities which isowned only by him/her. It is of some comfort to me that I still have the others in my life. But GypsySoul is right - that is not a reason to have more than one - you have no control of to whom you give birth; you don't know how they will turn out.


I'm very sorry Kaykay.
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hobgoblin View Post
It's not as easy for someone with siblings to admit that wished they didn't. People would think you were a horrible person! So you're not going to get a whole lot of people responding with a "gee, I'm one of three, but I wish my two siblings had never been born 'cause I would have preferred to be an only child."
I'm one of those people. Luckily my friends, and yes even my siblings, love me anyway.

Quote:
]The truth of the matter is that while I may have been happier in some regards, I probably would have lost out in a lot of other ways which are harder to quantify. How much of what made me who I am would never have happened if there were other kids in the house. We didn't have a lot, but I'm grateful for all the things my parents allowed me to experience throughout my childhood and youth. There's no way to say if any of the defining moments in my life would have happened in the same way, or at all had younger children been an issue.
Very well stated. I think my DD would agree.
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaykay View Post
I think it does depend a lot on the personality of the child, as hothulamaiui said. I grew up as an "only" and didn't like it. Even now, I would like a sister or brother. My son was an "only" (not by my choice) and never seemed to mind it. He was also very, very outgoing and social. I tended to be somewhat shy. Who knows? I don't recommend having an only especially, but I do think a parent's choice, particularly if one spouse feels strongly about it, needs to weigh into the equation as well. If a parent feels they can only parent one child well, I think that's something to be considered. As was stated, though, sometimes people do change their minds. When you don't have kids yet, sometimes it's hard to project what your actually feelings will be later regarding having more.

I don't know whether to add this or not, but my "only" child was killed in a car accident at age 16. I'm not willing to say it hurts less to lose a child if you have more than one, but I will say that if something does happen to your only, you will be totally childless and I do think that's harder in the long run (with no possibility of grandchildren, the knowledge you will likely be alone in your old age etc. and just simply the pain of no longer being a parent at all.) That said, most people do NOT lose their children, but it is something to be aware of.

I've thought about this a lot since my *only* son, age 17, overdosed on drugs a couple of weeks ago, had to be hospitalized, and almost died (he's completely physically recovered now, but I'm acutely aware there could be a next time). This crisis is actually why I joined this forum in the first place; I was browsing the internet seeking support/ kindred spirits in the immediate aftermath, and came across a thread here about teen and adult children with similar problems.

The fact that I have another biological son out there somewhere in the world would be no comfort to me, if my son died. I've never even met that other boy. He's nothing to me, really. I wish him well, but he would be no consolation whatsoever, if I lost my baby.

I've been a mother even longer than I've been a legal adult. I've never been anything else but a mother. If anything happened to my son, I would effectively no longer be a mother. And I have no other identity, no other way to think of myself. it would be as disorienting as looking in the mirror and seeing no reflection.

Of course, this is a purely selfish way to think of it. There are many reasons I want my son to survive, which have nothing to do with me and how his death might effect me. He has some wonderful qualities. The world needs him. He has so much to offer, so much to live for. I want him to survive for his own sake, not for mine. For the sake of those whose lives he might touch in the future.

I rarely allow myself the indulgence of selfishness and self-pity. But when I do, this is the thought that comes to me: if anything happens to him, then I am no longer a mother. And that's all I've ever been. if I'm not a mother, I am nothing.

But honestly, I can't allow myself to wallow in this. I'm too busy trying to help him see how loved and needed he is, and what great things life has in store for him.
I doubt any kid ever mended his self-destructive ways because he felt sorry for his whiny-ass mother.
I'm trying to show him that life is beautiful, and that the world needs him.
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:53 PM
 
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Originally Posted by jenn02674 View Post
I think I understand what she was talking about. It isn't so much that the loss of that child is any more/or less when there is only one child, but that perhaps your focus can be on the surviving kids. Focus and purpose helps alot when you are grieving.
Very true.

Quote:
We have talked about it because I only have onechild, who is seven. My husband died six years ago so unless I meet and marry someone in the next few years, he will be an only child at least through his teenage years.
My experience was pretty much the same.


Which poster said that "Life is a crapshoot" ?
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Old 06-01-2009, 09:59 PM
 
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Interesting perspectives.

I grew up youngest of 4 and am very close to my siblings.

My son, now 15, is an only child.

He loves being an only child - especially when he is around other little ones. He's not spoiled. Last winter he held his first job as an assistant ski instructor, and he's desperately trying to find a job this summer (hard at 15). He's always had to be a part of this family and do his fair share.

We also are very close knit. I stopped working when I got pregnant with him, and work now part time from home. My husband works from home. He is a home body and while he has many friends at school, doesn't care too much for the social crap that goes on, so right now isn't too bothered with much.

We are able to provide him with opportunities he might not have if we had more than one to take care of.

Life is a crapshoot. You can have children in the hopes that they will all be best buddies as adults, but that isn't always the case. I would never want to be a burden on my son when I grow older - it's my responsibility to prepare for my future so that I am taken care of and not my son's responsibility.

I love my siblings. But this doesn't mean my son would have had the same experience if we had had more. Kids can be surrounded by family and feel completely alone. It's all about how they were raised and their personality in how they handle it.

I love having just my one. We have a bond I don't think we would ever have had if I had more. That's just us and our experience. But not all only children are miserable or spoiled.
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