my best friend is an only, married to an only.
they absolutely do not want an only child.
they both feel strongly that they are missing out on that extended family feeling and are already sad that their children won't have aunts, uncles, cousins..
*CPST* mama to my three year old DS1 1.31.09 and wedded to angel 8.07
DS 2 8/18/12!!
I think the problem is that people assume siblings will be there for each other, when so often they are a blight in each other's lives. That's how it it with my MIL and FIL-- their siblings are not in the picture at all. For me, I am the youngest of six; but by 15 years so that I am effectively an only. I hated it, and begged my parents to adopt kids. But that's because I never saw my siblings as such. More like aunts and uncles or something. However, I really don't think I have it in me to have anther. I hated the newborn home-bound months. HATED them. I barely made it out of that with my sense of self intact. I don't think I can do that again. Better one healthy mom than a gaggle of siblings and an angry shrew!!
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25yo FTM to a Wiggle Panda , student teacher , newlywed
Probably most kids would like a sibling. The problem is if the parents don't feel they can adequately raise more than one, or don't want to. We have an only and I am sure he would like to have a sibling- he is four now- but dh and I just - we are just so - tired and overwhelmed already with life-! And we don't really feel we have abundant energy to raise another kid. It is a tough choice and one we consider a lot. On a purely for the child level I think ds would like sibling-- and I sometimes feel badly that we will deny him that. But on another level- dh and I feel that we don't have the extra energy to spend, the extra money to spend, the extra time to spend- and for ourselves we don't think we want to choose the extra work of another child. It is kind of a tough call. I do feel guilty about it sometimes for ds.
I remember from the time I was in preschool wanting a sibling, and my parents would not give that to me. Mom said she was too old, but also she never got along that well with her sister.
As a kid I wanted a sibling more to have a playmate, and then when I got to be a teenager, to take the pressure off of me. My parents had all these hopes and dreams for me and I felt like I got stuck with all the expectations. It got very stressful.
Now as an adult, I don't think about it much anymore, I don't know what kind of relationship I would have had with a sibling. On the other hand as adults, if it doesn't work you don't have to have much to do with each other. When my grandma died, it was my mom and me who ended up taking care of her, the other siblings did not do much, but that was our choice. Because of how she felt about her sibling and the fact she didn't want a big fight over the money, she just ended up paying herself, her husband and I for the time spent caring for grandma. (it was pretty involved, she had dementia for years and finally died of it, while managing to stay out of the nursing hope except for a few brief respites.)
I think part of the reason mom and her sister had some issues is not only their innate temperaments, but perhaps also some of the things my grandmother did when raising them. I'm sure she had her own reasons for raising them the way she did, but some of the stuff was just not helpful.
I only have one child who is four months old so far, and I know I want to have another one when he gets older. I think two will probably be enough for me, just because I want to do other things rather than just focus on children all the time.
I think that one problem is that parents can have a hard time recognizing when sibling dynamics are toxic, I know a few people who were bullied or even abused by siblings to the point that they want nothing to do with their siblings now and their parents refuse to face what happened. It's hard to face when one precious child is hurting another, and also hard to tell what's going on when it turns into "he said she said". It's also just hard to handle sibling abuse, I do not envy anyone in that situation. My mil refuses to accept that my partner hates my bil after what happened during their childhood, even though her brother was similar and she won't speak to him.
We're planning on having more, but I am concerned well end up with a kid like bil. I'm hoping that by being aware of the risk and looking out for the warning signs we'll be able to avoid it, though.