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Please help talk me out of my guilt over having an only child - Page 2

post #21 of 25
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by savithny View Post
If you had siblings, you don't understand the life of an only, in the same way that a man could not really understand the life of a woman or vice versa. A childhood with siblings is different than a childhood without siblings. They each have their pros and cons. Your child's childhood is not going to be like yours. It's not going to have some of the experiences you treasure - but its going to have some things that are benefits that *you* won't truly be able to understand.
This is absolutely right. See, this is such great advice I'm getting, it really is making me feel better. When I think of my childhood, it's mostly memories of getting in fights with my sister. Getting spanked for fighing with my sister. Being totally ignored and neglected when the two babies came along. Everything being a money issue, or being unable to do things because the babies were too little. And I felt lonely all the time because my parents always ignored me and my closest-in-age sister and I had a horrible, toxic relationship. There were good things too, but this is what I *feel* the most when I remember my childhood.

My DD will not have any of that . . . thank God. She may have moments of loneliness, but so did I, all the time. She may not have another child to sit with in amusement park rides, but she has me and DH. She will not grow up with anyone calling her names, punching her, or getting her in trouble.
post #22 of 25
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by chipper26 View Post
I don't know why there is such a push for kids to have siblings. It's nice, but not necessary. Does she have friends that are welcome at your home OFTEN? I think that's important.
This societal push to have 2 is a big part of it for me . . . we are in the suburbs, and it seems everyone has 2 or 3 kids. At DD's school, I run into very few only-child families. (No one seems to have more than 3, either.) I do have two friends with only children who are 100% happy with that. They both actually think I'm crazy to even think about having a baby---they are that secure. I just adore my DD so, so much . . . I want to do nothing that will ever hurt her life in any way.

She does have friends over often. She has a "BFF" in the neighborhood who she plays with constantly and is in school with. They have been best friends for 4 years now and they call each other sisters. Friends are welcome here any time & all the time. DD usually wants less play time than I set up . . . probably I am trying too hard. But she does have several good close friends, and her "BFF" (I feel so silly typing that out).
post #23 of 25
I just wanted to chime in and say that my dh is an only child. I read him your post and he was very adamant that being an "only" was a very positive experience for him. He is one of the sweetest, most selfless people I've ever met, and he has lot of friends and extended family that make up for any lack of siblings. There are certainly times when he's expressed that it might have been nice to have a sibling, but who knows--there's no guarantee that if he did that person wouldn't be a jerk or that they'd be particularly close.

You made huge personal sacrifices to be a mother, so enjoy it! We always wonder about what we don't have, but we shouldn't let that spoil what we DO have. And there is always adoption if you think adding to your family is really what you're called to do. s
post #24 of 25
I couldn't read this and not send you hugs. I never got as far along in conceiving as you did, but I do know what it's like to have your body betray you. We had to go the adoption route, and love our son so much we were considering doing it again. We really want him to have a sibling, so that, as you said, he's not alone once DH and I are gone. But I'm not all that young (over 40) and I'm not so sure it's the right thing to do.

When I weigh the pros and cons, I realize that DS (while still very young) is extremely social. He won't be alone. He'll definitely have friends, and hopefully a wife and family of his own by the time we die. I have several friends who have siblings (one who has EIGHT) and when their mothers became terminally ill, only one sibling bore the brunt. Even the one with 8 sibs did most of the work herself. No one wanted to step up. Everyone had an excuse. So giving your daughter a sibling doesn't guarantee either one of them sibling support in their adult lives.

I have one sister. I love her very much. We wouldn't be friends if we weren't related. We have NOTHING in common. When I talk to her on the phone, I hear nothing but what her poodle is wearing. Nothing about her life. I have no idea who her friends are, what her job is like, or whether she's dating anyone. When my mom needed someone to help her clean out my grandfather's apartment, my sister volunteered. I thought it would be great for the three of us to go together, one last time, to "Grandma's house." As soon as my sister found out I got time off to go too, she bailed. She decided she'd rather save her vacation days for a trip to Hawaii with her friends. (She had enough to do both... We only took 2 days.) I can see how it's going to be when my parents die. I live close to them, she doesn't. It's all me. I'm ready for it, but it makes me sad.

Also, my dad was an only child and LOVED it. He grew to be a very independent, very social, funny man. I'm hoping my son will do the same. If you daughter at 8 years old is saying she doesn't want/need a sibling, I'd definitely consider that in the decision.

I hope you can find peace with all that you've been through. It sounds very stressful and very painful and maybe you are depressed, maybe you're not. Maybe it's a hormone imbalance. Maybe it's just overwhelming to think about all of this! (I know it is for me...)

Many many hugs to you and your family.
post #25 of 25
Thread Starter 
Thank you MDC mamas. You really know what to say . I am feeling better. I tend to get all wrapped up in my head and need clear-thinking people to pull me out. I can't talk to anyone about this issue IRL because my friends and family think I am crazy for being sad not to have another, as being pg almost killed me.

I am realizing that I really am grieveing a number of things . . . my health and my mother's . . . and the fact that it's hitting me that I really will never have another baby. That really is very, very sad. I am one of those rare moms who LOVED the infant and toddler years, and to know I'll never go through that again is so hard. Of course, if I had had another baby 4 years ago (which is when I should have done it, if I were going to), it would be over now anyway .

I know DD will be OK. She does have two cousins (who will be her only two cousins as well). My sister is moving to one of my favorite towns in the world sometime this year, which is an hour from me. I'm tossing around the idea of talking DH and DD into moving there too when she does . . . that would be really nice, and the idea makes me really happy. My sister and I are very close, so it would be like giving DD a little brother and sister, in a way, if we lived closer. And if we don't move (I know DD and DH will be against the idea), they'll still see each other as much as they do now, which is once a month or so.
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