My husband and I decided to only have one and we are completely satisfied with that. He was an only child and loved it. Not only did he get his parent's full attention, but his friends to this day are his "brothers."
I have a 1 year old boy who is great! I have so much fun with him, but I really don't think I want a second child. We both work full time and I enjoy having time for myself on a rare occasion. I am afraid if I have a second, I will never ever have free time. However, I worry that my son will be missing out on something great if he doesn't have a buddy to play with.
My husband and I decided to only have one and we are completely satisfied with that. He was an only child and loved it. Not only did he get his parent's full attention, but his friends to this day are his "brothers."
Kids have FRIENDS, it's cheaper for going out to eat, vacations, college... Think about the quality of life you can give the child. Can you afford to stay home with 2? Why send 2 kids to day care?
I'm a single mom of an only child, and for me it's perfect. I grew up with 2 little brothers, but never really had a 'buddy' to play with. And yet my son has many 'buddies', and makes friends wherever he goes (despite being autistic).
An only child can be sheltered and lonely, but they can also be very confident and outgoing.
Just as a child with siblings can have built in playmates, but also grow up isolated and lonely.
It depends on the parents and the child. So it really is up to you.
I am an only child, and am raising an only child now. My son is five years old, and has never lacked for a "buddy to play with." He is involved in activities (sports, school, etc.) and makes friends wherever he goes. He is a very social little boy who speaks well above his age and communicates well with both adults and children.
He does ask for a brother or sister sometimes, but I don't think he truly comprehends what that means. He doesn't understand the long term needs and attention requirements if another child is added to the picture.
As a kid, I never felt left out, neglected, different, isolated, or any of those other things people seem to think only children feel. I'm sure other people will disagree if they had their own experiences as an only child. But, I've never understood people who feel that it is a parent's responsibility to provide a sibling for a child.
I even had a mother ask me one day, "How could you do that to your child?" My response has always been, "Do what? Devote my free time to bonding with my son? Being able to provide him with everything he needs and most of the things he wants? Not having to split my time between the needs and desires of two or more children?" I don't believe these things are harmful to a child.
If you socialize your only child properly and make sure he understands that the world does not revolve around him, he will be able and willing to find buddies in his activities, and can live a happy fulfilled life.
Siblings are not a bad thing. I know a few people who love their siblings and have great relationships with them. Unfortunately, in my family, both my parents hate their siblings with a passion and there is no love lost between any of them. This is my personal experience, of course, but it certainly did not make me feel that having a sibling was an automatic improvement to a family.
Pick a life path you are comfortable with and your son will thrive. You should not feel obligated to provide another child to amuse your son.
I understand how you feel completely. I am the mother of a 5 year old boy (who was born 3 months before I turned 40). We had planned on having 2 kids but since I have to work full time (I have no choice), I soon realized that there was no way I had the time or energy for 2 kids. My son is the love of my life and I can't imagine taking what little time I have away from him for another baby. My husband really wants 2 but he understood my point and agreed to just one. I felt the same way about never having free time, etc. My friends with 2 or more kids spend all their time running around between different schools and activities - it's pretty crazy. They can't go anywhere without a major production. They envy the fact that I can take my one kid anywhere at a moment's notice. The 3 of us can sit together on an airplane. I don't need a minivan. And I can take one of his friends with us if we want to go to an amusement park.
That being said, my son has lots of friends and cousins his age. He says he doesn't want a brother or sister. We play with him a lot but he plays really well on his own and likes his free private time to play himself. He makes friends with new kids really easily and enjoys his time in camp and school. He does really well in school because we have the time to teach him things, travel with him, take him places. My friends with 2 or more kids are frazzled and hardly ever go anywhere.
We're at a point now where my husband and I can have some more free time because our son will play himself or he has sleepovers with grandparents.
Yes, I do feel guilty sometimes but then I speak to my friends who are only children and they turned out fine. It is better for my son to be an only child with a happy mother than to have a sibling and have a stressed out mother.
Ultimately the decision is yours to make. Don't let anyone make you feel guilty if you choose to have only one child. I have random people bugging me all the time to have another baby.... it's very annoying.
Don't ever have a 2nd just because you worry your son needs a sibling. I chose to have 2 and they fight all the time. My oldest would have preferred to be an only child and still tells me so! Life is so much easier with only 1 at a time. For example, I send one to Grandmas and enjoy the other so much more than when they're both home. Love them both, but really I'd say don't be afraid to stick w/ 1. Having 2 is so much more work!-- more than you think. (After that, a 3rd or 4th isn't so much more than 2, but going from 1 to 2 is exponential)
With all due respect, you're approaching this intellectually, when you should be looking at this more emotionally. Assuming you can afford a second child, the only question is whether you (the parents) want one.
As the mother of 3 I can tell you that a second child is more than just double the work and time, it's exponential! You should applaud yourself for knowing that you require personal time, not feel guilty for it.
To have a child so that your existing chid will have a buddy is nuts. Who know's if they'll get along. It's not fair to the potential new baby.Your child will make plenty of friends at school, camp etc.
Ultimately you need to follow your heart, and don't really listen to other people's pro's and con's. The only point of view that matters is yours and your husbands.
It seems to me that bringing a child into the world is not something you should do for your existing child. It's something you and your spouse should do because it's something you want for your family to be complete. If you feel "done" then you probably should go with that feeling.
Do what is right for you-not the others or you may regret having a second and then no one will benefit. If you choose to have 1 make sure he is in all kinds of activities that involve other friends- sports and things like that and allow him to have friends over all the time. If he asks for a sibling remind him then he would have to babysit and when he gets tired of them they cannot just "go home". Really the only drawback I see as an only is if something happened to you and his father, then he has no one who really understands and will be there for him in that sense-but by then hopefully he is married with kids of his own and has his own family to concentrate on. I had 2 kids almost 5 yrs apart(I wanted 3 but miscarried the third). The spacing was perfect, I felt I did have "only time" with both of them and they NEVER fought! They are now 21 and 16 and are super close to each other and I am still having "only time" with the 16 yr old. They both feel in a sense that it was only them but then they also have each other. If you choose to have a second I highly suggest that- oh, and you can change your mind at any time. My friend did not think she wanted anymore and now her daughter is 3 and she wants another. Enjoy your baby now and don't worry about the other, you will know if and when it is right for your family.
I understand your thoughts, but after picking many people's brains (old and young) I decided to go for 2. Now I have two beautiful boys--one and half and 4. Except for the initial baby-newborn-high-maintenance phase, I'm already finding that I have more time for myself as they occupy each other. This will especially be true as they age. I won't have to be the constant playmate. The four year old is even able to sometimes entertain the baby enough that I gain another 30-45 min. of sleep in the morning before I have to get him out of the crib! He helps pick up dangerous small things the baby could put in his mouth, too. Someone pointed out to me that it's the best gift to give your child--a sibling. It's the closest person in the world to him, and will be a lifelong peer long after we're gone. The initial newborn phase was rough, but I'm so glad we did it. I don't regret it for a second! Good luck with your decision!!
I am an only child and I HAVE an only. My mom never planned it that way, nor did I...but I truly believe that in both cases this is the way God meant it to be. I NEVER wished for a sibling as a child, in contrast to the respondent saying everyone she knew did, but I have wished for one at times as an adult. Company when my folks passed on might have been nice. But then my husband and his sibs always had differences about caring for their aging mom, and some of them don't even speak to each other anymore, leaving a gap of pain in their lives. I agree that there's always that "grass is greener" aspect...we can't have it both ways! My daughter at 23 is very comfortable with solitude, as am I. My husband (one of six) seems to need more attention than the two of us combined! Is that due to a lack of attention growing up? I think it's that combined with a discomfort with solitude...he never had it!
As a sociologist, I've found it fascinating that my husband and his brothers all married only children....so we wives have plenty of nieces and nephews anyway!
I totally agree with others...follow your heart...don't let others persuade or dissuade you...YOU THREE will be living with your decisions! Yes, leave your options open for awhile because feelings change with time....but feel strong and sure that YOUR family knows what's best for YOU!
I'll reiterate that you can find playmates, maybe even cousins, for your friends. Be sure you still have couple time -- a good marriage is the best gift you can give your child, they say...but also, it lets the only know they are not the center of the universe. I also made sure we did volunteer activities to reinforce that point...of course all kids benefit from those! I loved the freedom to ask a friend along on vacations...someone of MY choosing (as a child), or my daughter's, when she was little. My best bud in elementary was a neglected middle child who was thrilled to travel with us!
Yes, I sometimes wish I had a sib now that I'm grown, but I also LOVE my life as an only. My dad would take me out on "dates" to San Francisco or LA when I was growing up and those remain special memories...my mom was my best friend ever, though still my mom...now, I get to PICK my friends and am very close to a couple of my cousins as well as my sisters-in-law and nieces and nephews. It may not be the same as sibs, but it's a great life...and I didn't ever have to argue with a brother or sister about aging care for parents and the like!
Oh, and I got to take my daughter to Paris with me when she was a teen, we flew from California to Hawaii more than once, flew here and there...more air expenses, hotel costs, etc. would have made that much harder. I hear my friends talking about the cost of five people flying ANYWHERE and count my blessings that wasn't an issue for us! My daughter and I are very close and she is NOT self-absorbed and certainly less spoiled than many of her friends from families with multiples...I think some of them try to buy away their guilt for lack of time and attention to give to the kids. As an educator, I say ALL parents need to somehow schedule in one on one time with each child...the best parenting isn't based on how MANY children you have, but how much you love your children, spending some time actually focusing on them and showing appreciation for who they are as people, setting reasonable boundaries, and being secure in your choices...
It's imperative you follow your gut leanings or you'll surely regret it...reassess as you go, sure, but listen to the whisper of your heart and you can't go wrong! Tune out the rest...we'll never please the rest of the world...trust your sense of what's right for you. If none of my ramblings speak to you, that's fine, but do listen to this: feel empowered as a woman to do what's ethical and sensible for YOU and your family!
Slightly different angle -- I had three babies, plus a wonderful step-son. But when I had my third baby I knew I was finished. It was like something clicked over and said, "Done." I think that sense is built into each of us. Whether it kicks in after one child or nine -- when you're done, you're done. Listen to it, be grateful for it and revel in the gift of knowing you have exactly the family that is right for you. If the time is right for you to have more children later, you'll feel it. Until then, enjoy distraction-free time with your one-year-old.
I was the late baby, raised as an only child because my siblings were off to college. Growing up as an 'only child' certainly didn't ruin my life! I got to bond with my mom in ways my adult siblings envied ... because there was time. It's a huge juggling act to make proper time for each of my kids -- and it's never as much as they deserve. I never live up to the example my mom set for me. There just isn't time. I wish I could hire a cook and a housekeeper and a driver... so I could spend all that time having conversations and tickle fights instead. But I can't. It's the only downside, really.
A good play group, kindergarten, play dates, cub scouts, soccer, football, school plays and band practice -- there are plenty of ways to get buddies. But time with mom all to yourself; there's no substitute. Go with your instincts. Always.
One advantage is that you don't have two kids to send to college! I too only have one kid. I am struggling with the same question, but my daughter is special needs and has no cousins either. I may just go ahead and have one, because I don't want to leave her an old woman with no family. I would also say that if you have a large family outside your hubby and child, and they have kids, it isn't that big of a deal if you just have one. I think it is mean to leave your kids without family after we pass on. I think if he has cousins or lots of family it isn't a big deal, if not mull it over some more.
I didn't choose to have only 1 child but it's what was in the cards for me. If I had to be really honest, I would definitely want more kids. Now, that being said, let me tell you about my experience. My son will be 22 years old this summer and he's the light of my life. We are extremely close. While I would like to think that we would be as close as we always have been I'm not sure that we would have been if I had other children. He has always had my undivided attention and I've been happy to give it to him. Yes, I have had to be the playmate at times but to me it was worth it. When he was younger I tried to include him on things that interested me so that I could still enjoy some of my interests. I would definitely look into team sports or clubs. This is a great way for them to have playmates. One idea that worked really well for us was to include a playmate (when he got older) on family outings and vacations. He had more fun because there was someone his own age with his same interests and my husband and I had more fun because our son was happier. Plus we had some time for us! We're still doing this. We just got back from a Caribbean cruise with my son and his best friend. They got to do the "young" thing and my husband and I did "our" thing and then met up for dinner every night and exchanged stories. It was great. One other benefit is really getting to know your childs friends. Several of my son's friends call me mom. It's kind of like having a dozen boys without the upkeep. Good luck to you!
I have a four year old daughter and since I had her I haven't wanted anymore. My daughter is very imaginative and creative and can play by herself just fine, and we have neighbors she plays with and there are other activities like sports or music etc that the child can get into...it is not fair to give this future unborn child a job...to entertain your first.
Mother of four here. Interesting that you feel a second child would be a "buddy" to your son. That may not be the case at all. My two closest in age do not get along at all. It has been my lifelong experience that it is a "grass is always greener" situation. Those who have siblings often wish they did not. Those who do not have siblings often wish they did. My oldest three were raised together. My fourth came 15 years after the others and so is, in effect, an only child. So I've had it both ways with my kids. You should never have a child unless YOU are 100% sure YOU want one. Never have a child in order to give another child a playmate. That's what friends are for. :0) You will never be able to fulfill all of your child's desires. Don't even try. Life gives you what it gives you. It is an important life lesson to be content with what you have.
People are choosing to have one child these days for a lot of reasons. Enroll your child in a great daycare, get involved with other parents in the neighborhood, etc...This is a great way to ensure your child develops socially.
I love having an only child. My dad was an only child too. He was very well adjusted as is my child. Yes, it's tricky to keep my son occupied while I'm doing my own thing. Sometimes I wish he had a sibling to play with, but know that's not the reason to have another child. My son calls his friends when he wants to play thus allowing me time to work from home. Otherwise I just try to incorporate him into everything I do from work to housework to scrapbooking. He was the only "only child" in his class last year, but that didn't seem to bother him. He likes not having a sibling because he doesn't have to share anything including his parents' attention. Good luck!
I am 36 years old & have an 8 year old child. I am unable to have any more children & was sad about it for quite some time because I really wanted our son to have a sibling to grow up with. However, now that my son is in school & deeply involved in extra-curricular activities, I am actually very satisfied with only having him. I can take the time to spend with him at his baseball games & cub scout meetings without having to leave in the middle to pick up another child from some other activity. I am not a taxi, nor am I pulled in 8 different directions like many of the other parents with 2, 3, or more kids that I know. I have the time & energy to help him with his homework & school projects, plus I have the additional time to spend on myself too. In these tough times, & with only 1 child, I also have the money so he can be involved in all the things he wants to be without us being "strapped". It may sound selfish, but so be it. But just remember, no one can tell you whether it's right or wrong for you to have 1 child, or 10. Ultimately, you need to follow your heart...
I wouldn't look at it like "the advantages" of having one child. I just don't think about it that way. You can argue both sides, but what matters is how you feel deep down inside. It was a struggle for me to get pregnant and I feel so very lucky to have one healthy, wonderful daughter. I know my personal limits and I would not be a good parent to more than one child - it's just too much for me and my husband is the same way. I have 3 siblings and I only get along with one of them, so there is no guarantee that having another child is going to give your son the friend that you think he needs. I do worry that since she is getting older, she will want to spend less time with me, but that is only one part of life. Of course there are the horrible thoughts if something happened to my child - but I can't live in the "what if". only you can make the decision and you have to go with your gut!
Hey L....well, I have 3 kids, ages 5, 4 and 2. So...you can see where we stand on the only child issue :)
But a couple of different thoughts from where I come from...I was the last of 4...my oldest sister is 16 years older than I and my closest sibling in age was 7 years older. I felt like an only child at times because they were always older and off having a completely different life than I did. It was definitely lonely and I hated not having a sibling closer in age to me. That being said, I did grow up much more independent, almost too much at times, and I know that was a big adjustment for me when I had to give up pretty much every ounce of that...all at my own choice and I wouldn't trade it for the world!
To us, family is everything. When all else fails, family is always there for you...no matter what. And we wanted our children to have siblings...and as it turns out, the older 2 are only separated by 1 year and 5 days. They are completely inseparable, because life as they have only known has pretty much always had the other one in it! They love each other (a girl and a boy) and yes, they do fight, but they play together so well, and as they are getting older, ALWAYS, ALWAYS look out for one another. One can't go to a birthday party without asking for a goodie bag for their brother/sister. It's precious beyond words...
Going from 1 to 2 kids is an adjustment, but honestly, not much of one (going from 2 to 3 was MUCH harder). You learn how to do it...it's just a new routine...and it comes over time. You look back and wonder where the time went because you adjust in rather quickly :) That being said, you have to want another child for you...and your husband...not for your first child.
Someone once said to me..."You might look back and say, wow, I wish I would have had another child...but you won't look back and say, wow, I wish I never had that other child". It rings true for our 3rd...we love him beyond words and our first 2 kids think he's the greatest thing ever! Sitting back and watching them interact and build their bonds now...it's absolutely priceless...and I would not change anything for the world! We are even contemplating a 4th!!
Yes, it's true...you're free time diminishes with each child you have...BUT...these young years only last a VERY VERY short time. Before you know it they will be 5, then 10, then 15...then off to college, etc. You will wonder where the time went. Believe me...I can't believe our baby girl is starting Kindergarten this year...I thought it would never come and here it is. This time goes SO fast...so whatever you choose...enjoy every minute of it!
Best of luck to you!!
We were surprised by our second but we love to see them play together. Our daughter is independent and has a great disposition. I think it worked out perfect to have a child with a great temperment first. As time is progressing we can still go out now and then and they go to bed and we have the evening. I am glad they are close in age, it is begining to pay off aleady. My DH takes care of both of them on occasion and I can escape with the girls, shop, read or sleep. It took a little time but it is balanced better than expected where I can enjoy our time together, time with my DH and time with me.
Only you can know but there surly is a benefit both ways!
Sarah 27 months
Zacahry 10 months
I am an only child and always longed for a sibling. I will have more than one child. I always had friends over to my house or went to their houses. The only thing I really miss is the experience and connenction of having and experiencing that relationship with a bro/sis. I wasn't ever lonely or sad. My mom was a stay at home mom and gave me tons of attention so that also made up for not having a sibling. Hope my personal experience helps!
I myself have a 2yr old son. My husband and I have been thinking the same thing about having only him. But, we both have sibling, I a younger brother by 4yrs and my husband has 2 younger sisters, one is 2 yrs younger and the other is 9yrs younger.
My son will be 3 this August and we have decided to have another. The reason isn't because we want him to have a play buddy, but someone to learn from.
Learn to share, learn to love, learn to care for. Also, the fun of having a sibling...waking up early on Christmas morning giggle about what we think Santa brought us, ganging up against Mom and Dad, the secret paks between sibling. We don't want our son to miss out on what we enjoyed so much with our sibling.
Plus, we started to think about the adult years of our son. It is good to know that if either one of our parents (mine or my husband's) get sick and need help it is just not us that have to worry and take care of them. We will have our siblings help. We won't have to go through the pain alone if one of them passes. We can share the pain and happiness in life with our siblings. They are the closeness in DNA to us and that is something so special that we decided we want our son to have the same feelings.
And yes, we know they will argue, dislike each other at some point, but the love that they will share will be awazing.
I hope this helps you. Just think about all the stages of your son's life, not just a playmate for him.
I think you'll have the opportunity to really give him all the attention you have the time and energy for. My brother has 1 child and he's content with that. She is their life.
I have 4 and obviously I can't give them each what I would like. Quality one on one time isn't easy with 4.
But, I like the fact that at this age (mid-30's) I have my 3 siblings and we are now very good friends to each other (we fought all the time growing up).
I too, have only one child. She is the most wonderful, intelligent, kind & caring individual I know. She is not spoiled even a little and I've had the time to take with her to show her life at it's best. She will be 14 in August and just made varsity cheerleader at a top high school in California. My husband once joked to a friend who asked us why we didn't have more children...he replied "we decided to do it once and do it right." I think we've accomplished that. Also ~ Dr. Laura only had one son and he appears amazing. Have a terrific day ~ hope this helps! C.
I have one child, a 6 years old daughter. Since my one child is so high energy, I prefer not to have any more children; however, ever since she was born I've allowed her to have regular, on-going, play dates; I am proud to say she has great social skills & she is an extrovert, too.
I was the youngest child, alongside 2 additional brothers. My two brothers, who are 1 1/2 years apart never got a long (while growing up, the 2 of them had many physical fights).
Now that my 2 brothers are in their 40's, they've made some attempts to be friends, which was short-lived, but ultimately, being friends has not been their destiny (so far).
I read through some of your responses and realized that I needed to chime in because I have the unique experience of having both. My older children are from a previous marriage and they are 11 and 13 years older than my son with my husband. I had my older kids with me half the time when I lived in the same city as my ex. When my husband and I moved an hour away 3 years ago we chose for them to live with their father because of their high school years. They would come home with me on weekends and some extra during summer and holidays.
I wanted to give you a bit of background because of what has happened with me. I had my first children a bit closer together than most because my second pregnancy was twins. I had such a great time with my older kids as they played together. They always had a playmate. With siblings there is a bond that is inexplicable. Some people mentioned that they are not close to their siblings and I think that is due to the parents when they were growing up. I have my times of having arguments with my siblings but when push comes to shove I know that they will do what ever they can to help or encourage me.
Even though my youngest has older siblings I feel a loss almost everyday for him that he doesn't have a brother or sister closer to his age. I could probably write a book about this subject but I will cut it short. This feeling is so strong that I think about adopting sometimes. (I am too old to have another and have to take medication that would not make another baby possible.)
FYI caring for one more is not that much more and having a playmate actually makes it easier at times but you need to decide for your situation. You need to be prepared for when your child asks you why he doesn't have a sibling. You also need to realize that ANY pregnancy could be a multiple whether it is in your family or not. If all that is holding you back is your work and preparing a few extra meals, I say go for it. But talk it thoroughly through with your husband and find out how each of you trully view this issue.
Good luck with what ever you decide.
I know you mean about wanting to have time for yourself and working full time. I went back to work after my son was 7 months. My parents watch him so that I could teach full time. It has been so hard and for the longest time I only wanted 1 child. But then I changed my mind, and now I am 6 months pregnant and my son is 2 and 1/2. They will be 3 years apart once the baby is born. I know I won't be able to work full time, so I plan on taking an extended maternity leave and then teaching part-time in the future for a few years. This will mean that financially, we're really, really cutting back for a while. Its tough! If you know that you only want one, there is nothing wrong with that. Its OK! And if you change your mind, that's ok too! Feel good!
PS Do you have siblings? Sometimes they can be a pain in the ass!
You have to listen to your gut and no one else. After taking into consideration everything, if you can honestly say you dont want another, then by all means dont have another. With that said however... I agree, your son might miss out. My best friend is an only child, my mom babysat her my whole life growing up. She HATES the fact that she is an only child. This I would say is the biggest source of her "issues" in life. She is lucky tho, she had my sister and I. We are her surrogate sisters, but in her heart of hearts she wishes she had real siblings. She is now working on her 3rd kid, having an only child was NEVER an option for her. I saw the struggles as well and because of her expereince of being an only I vowed too never to have just one. I have 3 and want another! As far as time for yourself, that depends on so many factors. It sounds like the desire is there, next you need support from your husband, if you have those you should be fine. Like I said I have 3 kids (one still nursing) and I am active in my twins club, work part time and make it to girls night out 2 times a month. Good luck with this big decision.
Pray about it!
Your Heavenly Father just might have a plan or two of His own!
Since He figured out how to make that wonderful little boy of yours, He certainly could figure out how to provide a little more $ (and time) along with (it if you ask). God BLess you for caring to want the best for all!
I cannot write a lot at the moment as we have to leave on vacation but...I was 43 when my son (adopted) came home as an infant and didn't feel it fair to a child to go forward again at my age. This being said, we have an incredible, wonderful son that travels with us (car trips and otherwise) very well, loves it and is very very capaple of entertaining himself. He has never yurned for a sibling although it would have been nice. I can honestly say, like everything in life, you do what you want to do and in the best way you kbow how and your child will grow to be a wonderful, caring adult. I certainly couldn't ask for anymore from a child than what I have!!! He is extremely well-rounded. If you need anymore input I would be happy to accommodate but know we are out of town for the nextt 3 weeks!
Trust your instincts. You should have as many children as you and your husband WANT — not how many anyone else thinks you should have or how many most people usually have. And providing a friend to your child is not a good reason for having a second one. My husband and his sister spent their entire childhoods at odds with each other — he has no fond memories of sibling bonding and friendship! However, if you and your husband both want another because it feels right in your heart, then go for it. I'm speaking as someone who grew up as an only child (I have one sister 16 years younger than me) and as a parent to an only child who is now 7. Like my daughter now, I had friends to play with and have no sense of "loss" for not growing up with a sibling. I don't intend to have more because my "mommy instinct" tells me that this is right for our family, and my husband agrees. So no guilt, no pressure. Just know yourself and then enjoy whatever choice you make!
I was raised an only child, and I was also adopted. Growing up, I felt at times isolated and different. Of course, this was in the fifties when couples had many children. When I had children of my own, I was married to someone who was also an only child. My grown children have no first cousins, nor do they have aunts and uncles other than by marriage and a second generation. I had two children and I had to fight my former husband for the second child. I really wanted three, but I'm thankful for the two that I do have. I have seen many only children due to divorces and absent fathers (and mothers). I guess what I am trying to say is that you should think this through and talk to your husband and your family about this. In a world where the younger generation feels they are entitled to everything, it is important to raise your children to know the value of sharing and accountability whether it's with a sibling, a cousin, whatever. I'm thankful that I had lots of cousins growing up, because it did teach me to share, and it did show me that the world did not revolve around just me. And even though my friends called me spoiled, I was anything but. I hope this helps!
As a only child myself, growing up with no one was kind of lonely. I think that a sibling bond is wonderful and unique. I can definitely understand the concern of bringing another child into your life but I have 2 young children (5 & 6) and I can tell you as far as time management, there is no difference than having one child (in my experience). My children are very close and I feel comfortable knowing that they will have each other. With 2 children I am still able to have a social life, I have been with my boyfriend for a little over a year now and we do lots of this with and without the kids. I understand the fear but it could be manageable.
I struggle with the same dilemma every day. I have a 9 month old. And the outside pressure to pop another one out is immense. Since I'm 38, I also feel like I should poop or get off the pot. In the long run, go with your first instinct. What's left of your free time will most likely be gobbled up and I've learned that you pick your friends and not your family. Your son can hand pick a buddy to play with. My two best friends are also only children and they are very well adjusted and you wouldn't know it. Don't know if that helps but I just wanted you to know that I can relate.
I was raised as an only child. I used to feel sorry for myself because I thought it was a bit lonely at home, and for a long time I was angry at my parents because they wouldn't give me a sibling (side note: what I really wanted was an older brother...not sure how they would have pulled that one off for me!). But you know what, it was not a traumatizing experience by any means. I get to experience sibling relationships as an adult through my husband's siblings, and looking back, I don't think my parents would have managed a second child well. They wouldn't have been cut out for it. So although part of me wishes I had siblings still, for me and my parents, I think I'm better off. :)
Holdays are alot more fun for kids when they have a sibling to share them with, I don't know what my two sons would do if they didn't have each other, they are nor 24 and 21 and have been best friends since the younder one was big enough to play with him, also I have a 19 year old daughter, and my family is one of the greatest gifts God has given me, and actually 2 is easier than one because they entertain each other so you do get that time to yourself I know I did, and I would change anything for the world. Mother 0f 3 abd blessed. J.
I hear your concerns about choosing to have a triangle family. I have a 4 year old and he has not yet expressed any worries about not having siblings (he is very intelligent and well spoken). On the other hand, I have had many conflicting thoughts about having a second one. I know my limitations and I know in my heart that having 2 children would not allow me to be the kind of parent I want to be. Also, I recently read a book about birth order and how it influences a child's life. Having siblings can be very beneficial but at the same time it can be a very painful process (and I believe this is why many siblings never get along). It is our job as parents to work and deal with our children's emotions when a new sibling is born.
Good luck in your decision!
First, this is your decision and yours alone (with hubby). YOU are the one who has to parent the child, not your son, so he doesn't really get a full vote. I have 2 kids, and I see many advantages to having one, and also two (as for more, I have no real opinion) Advantages to one child:
YOUR life has WAYYYY more control
Your son will be very comfortable with adults
Your son will get lots of love and attention from the ones who mean most to him (you and dad)
You can go on vacations and do fun things with him much sooner than if you have to wait for another child to grow up and fit into skis
You will always be able to go on school field trips without having to get a babysitter
There are more, but bathtime is over, so I gotta go... I won't share the advantages to having two, but good luck with your decision...(I think deep down, you probably know what you want to do anyway, trust yourself!!!)
I think everything in life has pros and cons. Having 2 children is SO much harder than having one. My husband and I both work full time, work different shifts and have different days off. It was much easier with one child (my older child has autism which I think makes it 10x harder). That said, I don't regret having a second child at all. He's a real lover, both my boys get along well and I think having a younger brother has really helped my older child in learning patience, and many other things. But I really don't think there is any right answer, just what works for your family.
I think having more than one child is the way to go! I have 3 girls (ages 20, 15, 13) I know when they have issues they have each other. I'm from a family of 4 kids and now that my mom is older with Alzheimer's we have each other to take care of her. Kids learn to share and communicate better when they have siblings. As they get older, they hang out together and they are friends. I can't imagine what life would be like with just one kid.
Good luck to you!
I think it depends on the rest of your family. If you have a close knit family , where when you're gone your son can turn for love and support ..than fine. I have one son and I will have another , God willing , because I personally am sick at the thought of my son being alone in the world after my husband and I pass away. There's no guarantes that siblings will be close, but at least there out there . Right now my husbands family is fudeing ( they were very close before) and my family is wishy washy ( being across the country doesn't help) . I feel I need to give my son a brother or sister based on my circumstances. I would actually love to have a bigger family but I personally would not have more than 2 biological children , I believe in neutral or negative population growth .
If we can financially we will adopt a third child ..maybe a fourth who knows :):):)
Only children do actually benefit in some ways
* More finacial resource available to them
* More time with each parent
* Higher acedemic achievement
* Higher selfesteme and
* Usually more successful in life
Two children often have many of the same advantages but they drop slightly for the second born. (More than 2 do not reap many of these benefits.) However, 2 children do give them a greater sense of "family". Though there are a lot of times that they would be "buddy buddy" there will also be times they are at WAR with each other.
I think that how many children to have is dependent on your and yous husband's feelings of when the family is complete. If one child is enough, than that's your answer. I wouldn't make any permenant choices yet, as him only being a year old, you very well could change your mind. If he starts Kindergarten, and you still know that one is the right choice for your family, then your done, and he will reap MANY benefits.
Each reason and situation is different.
Like you, after my first child, I was in no "rush" to have another. For a bit, I did not want a 2nd child. But, me & Hubby mulled over it. 4 years later, we had a 2nd child... which was planned and a blessing, and we would never change that. We are so happy about it, as well as our daughter.
Prior to having our 2nd child, we spoke with LOTS of "only children/adults." They all told us, unanimously, that they never liked being an only child. That they always wished they had a sibling.
We wanted a "family" with more than 1 child, and we also, wanted our firstborn, our girl, to have a sibling... we did not want her to be alone....to have no "family" after we are long gone etc. We thought about the future, and we decided to have another child. We have never regretted it... it is so amazing to see 2 siblings caring about one another... and growing up together. This to me, is bliss.
A sibling is not a "buddy." A child should not be gotten just to be a playmate. I'm sure that is not what you meant...but you may get critiqued for that comment.
Sure, the HOPE is that siblings get along with one another. Yes, sometimes they don't, and it can be a very conflicted problematic relationship. I had that with my sister from childhood until adulthood. It was only over the past 4-5 years or so that we actually get along.
Yes, you will have more time to yourself with only 1 child. My friend, chose to do the same as you. She only has 1 child, by choice and after deciding on it with her Hubby. So, that is her choice and that's fine for her.
It is not an easy decision. But it should be a conscious decision and well thought out. No matter how many kids a Woman has...it is still "busy" even if with just one. Carving out "me time" is still a challenge no matter how many kids in are the brood. It has to be a team effort for each person to have their "own" me time etc.
For your son....he is only 1 years old now... he only knows you, Mom. As he gets older, he may very well "request" having a sibling...many young toddlers do that and say that to their Mommy/Daddy. What will you say to him? Be prepared for that.
If your son does wish to have a sibling... it may or may not change your mind. But, you will need to address it at some point with your son as he gets older.
There is no "right" answer to this. You seem to have answered yourself though... and my just be seeking confirmation of your thoughts. You already seem decided on only having 1 child. How does Hubby feel about this? Ideally, both partners should be on the same page about it.
Good luck and I hope you find an answer that is comfortable,
You have already gotten a lot of great advice but there was something I wanted to add just in case. I realize people are having children later in life and although I don't know your age I would take that into consideration as well. My sister in-law was born when her father was 52 and her mom 41. Her mother passed away one month before she graduated and her father passed on one year after the mom. So no parent will ever help her pick out a wedding dress or walk her down the aisle and that is heartbreaking. Age is just another consideration. For medical reasons I only have one child although we are hoping to adopt one. However, our daughter is almost five and very well adapted socially, intelligent and potty trained:) So if you ever change your mind, give yourself until your boy is 2 1/2 or even three before trying for another one. That way you have given him time before bringing another child into the mix. A little bit of break is good. Good luck whatever you do:)
If you have more than one, you may eventually have MORE free time, because the two of them play together. My two play for hours together (and they are 4 years apart), and the people I know who have one child, they are exhausted trying to keep them busy and having to play with them. Don't get me wrong, I still play with my kids a lot, and it is more work having two, but I cherish those days where I get tons of stuff done because they are playing so well together. To me it would seem lonely for the child not having a sibling, but then again, if they didn't have one, they wouldn't know any different. Right now, your child is so young, but give it another year or two, and you may start yearning for another.
I have 4 kids and i often wish i had free time. I do get it now and again when i ask my husband to hang out with the kids. And i often think about the day when they will all be old enough to take care of themselves.
But i wouldn't trade all the fun and memories and haertache of having all of them. They have all learned so much from each other, and we have learned so much from them.
My kids are 3,11,13,& 14 now, and boy is everyday an adventure.
It was so hard with the kids when they were younger, but they do get older and it is amazing to see the type of people they become.
It was really nice when the kids were younger they had each other to play with and that gave me some time to do stuff. And now they hang out and even help me with the three year old.
You know what your limits are. Follow them. Maybe wait a year then have another if you want to. or not. It is ok.
I hope this helps
The question becomesowoes he do socially. I am a parent of one boy. My son is a very social being so I dont think it will be a problen not having a sibling. However, you have to be the judge of your individual needs. Just feel blessed you have one child. Maybe you feel the need to have another deep down inside? Hope this helps you.
Laura is totally right in saying not to have another child unless you really want one. My son is also an only child. Because I was older when I had him, my husband and I opted not to have a second child. We are happy with our decision. When my son was a baby, I got involved with a couple of playgroups, which gave him a chance to be around kids his age. He went to German preschool, which is all about socialization, and is now in school. It seems like he's playing with one friend or another after school and never wants for buddies. He is also in the Cub Scouts, which gives him another opportunity to be around boys his age. When he was in preschool, he asked why he didn't have any brothers or sisters. My husband and I explained that families are all different--some have one kid, and some have more than one. Now he is happy being an only child because he also likes to have some time to himself. Overall, he has a good balance of being with his friends and being by himself.
I have one son who is 6 months and I wasn't planning on having another child. One child is....one meal at a restaurant, one plane ticket, one college education, etc. I feel like one is easy to pick up and go with. I see people with two and I just get tired thinking about it. Sometimes I feel like I should give him a sibling and the pull to become pregant again calls! (I'll be 38 this year, so I know how you feel about needing to get on it soon.) But I have a younger brother and can't really stand him. So family doesn't necessarily mean everything. That's what "friend families" are for!!
I am also choose to have just one child only. My son is now 2 1/2, a perfect time for anyone to have a 2nd child. But I feel so bond and close to my son now that I don't think having another one would make any of us (me, my husband, and our son)feel better. I watch him when he's around babies, and i can see he's not the "big brother" kind that would love to have a sibling. He doesn't care to play or look or hold the baby, even though I've tried to tell him it's okay to play w/ his cousin (my niece is 4 months old). He is very active, and I love to play w/ him, either just sit down and play w/ his train, read him a book or running around the house and play tag. I would not have time and energy (and also financially) to have a 2nd child. People keep talking about having a sibbling would actually give you more time since they will play together. But, in my point of view, I want to play w/ my kid(s) all equally, I would never want to have another child so that I can have more time for myself. If so, why would I even consider giving birth in the first place.
For him to have social life w/ other kids his age, he is in full-time daycare/preschool while i'm at work (btw, both my husband and me bring home equally income for our family) He also currently have total 6 cousins to grow up with, he will never be lonely or feel lonely when he grew up. It's not like he's the only child in the world and only know his mommy and daddy. My son is outgoing and love to play w/ other kids. Just when at home, he will play w/ me and my husband.
So, if you feel that one is good enough to have a happy home and to provide him/her the best outcome in life, then stick w/ your gut and take good birth control method :) 'Cause you wouldn't want to have an accident one day and would feel that child is unplan.
good luck w/ everything,
Enjoy you beautiful boy. I had three sons. The older two were 3 years apart, but their personalities were so different that although they played together when preschool age or when older on vacation, each had their own friends that they enjoyed. Even at during vacation, sometimes each would do their own thing. Just make sure that you do have time for him to be around other children his age. Right now he is too young for being concerned about that...I might be nice to arrange time for him to interact with someone his age when he is about 31/2 years old or so. You need to find another family with a child that he "clicks" with and spend time with that family at the park or each other's homes. Perhaps he will "click" with someone at daycare or church. If he will be in daycare, he probably will get more than enough interaction at the daycare and enjoy playing by himself. He needs some time for himself at this age too. You will find that he has his own personality and you can't force friendship. Preschoolers only parallel play. It is when they get school age that real friendships develop:)
However, if God sends you a second child unlooked for, you will have to adapt and love him too:) (My 3rd was a "God send" when the other two were already in school.)
Also, you need to let your husband know you need some "time for yourself"...even if it is just a bubble bath or going out for a coffee with a friend. He does too and you can arrange these times between you. Be sure to go out on a "date" with him about once a month too. (Dr. James Dobson's recommendation).
Due to medical reasons I had only one child. He is now 24 years old. I asked him this very question. He said he didn't miss something he never knew. There is no way to know if they will be good friends He had lots of friends in the neighborhood. And you are right. 2 kids is a whole new game. 2 times everything. And you are last. My sister in law has 2 elementary school age kids. I took care of her kids for an evening a couple of weeks ago. She never has a break. Works full time and does school and personal activities in any spare time she has. Plus keeping her house up. Follow your heart. I have no regrets of having just 1
You know--we have 1 7-yr. old boy right now. And only now do I want another--but not so desperately that if it doesn't happen naturally and easily, I'm so happy just having our little guy in our life! It's been a blast--he's so easy to travel with, and so much fun--and we both work too...so we're only juggling one child and soccer or basketball or golf or whatever season we're in! He doesn't seem super eager to have a bro/sis---at times he is more than others---but in general not so much....regardless what you decide, enjoy! :) 4 yrs. old was one of my most fave. years ever---but he's so fun now....and I know your little guy is too!! (for the record, I was raised with 3 sisters, and my husband with 2 sisters...so not only children.)
Until a year and a half ago, I thought that I would have only one child. For six months, I was quite content with just one. Then, at 41, to my surprise, I became pregnant with my second, who is now 8 months old.
Once in a blue moon, I have "free time." I feel significantly busier than when I had one child. I am more tired. I will probably need to work longer, to an older age, to support a larger family. I've heard that people don't feel as busy after their kids start school, around age 5. We'll see. I hope so.
I really enjoy my second child (son), though, so having him proved to be a blessing in many ways. He looks a lot like his brother but differs from him in many ways. My sons seem to enjoy each other's company.
I believe that there are benefits to having one child as well as having multiple children. Do what you think is best for you.
If you want more free time, you should have at least one more. Right now you are your son's only playmate. If you have another he will have a buddy and give you more time to yourself.
This is what happened with me. When I had one, it was all me for her entertainment, but after my son was born, they kept each other occupied and I was able to do other things. I found that having just one was more work than the four I have now.
I would at least consider one more.
Hi L.: As I'm weeks away from expecting my 6th child, I will offer only one piece of advice from my childbearing years that I haven't heard from the previous posts: WAIT to do something permanent in the way of birth control. I have been completely surprised at how my emotions, thoughts, circumstances, and my marriage have changed my desire for more or less children. I NEVER thought I'd have 6 kids (in fact, I can't believe I'm having my 6th one in less than a month!), and yet I'm so ecstatic and can't wait till I hold my baby and see her sweet little face. Everyone of our children were planned, too - I was never careless about getting pregnant. I'm overwhelmed sometimes, but feel incredibly fortunate to have been given so many treasures and to see my children enjoy and learn from each other - most of the time! God bless your decision- it is one that should be made with much discussion from your husband first and foremost.
We didn't want anymore children after #1, but around the time he was 3, he was asking for a brother or sister and we decided that it would be best for us for have another child. When we are dead and gone, at least we wouldn't feel like we left him all alone. So, we had #2 (another boy) and they are best friends - not to mention, they both are learning how to resolve problems and disagreements, learning to share without me asking them too...and while they are enjoying each other, I can actually get things done. then #3 came along and they are in LOVE with their baby sister.
One of our friends decided on one baby and felt that their family was complete, then she accidently got pregnant with #2 and then #3 and then had her tubes tied. She was overwhelmed with 3 kids, but handled it. Then her oldest was 7 and died unexpectedly last year. She told me that it was really good that she ended up with two more kids, because she might not be alive today if her only child died and there was no one to live for.
NOT that any of these reasons are your reasons to have more kids, but you may change your mind. Do you have you make any permanent decisions now?
I have 2 children, and I would love to have another, but my husband's not ready. And for a while I would feel that I wouldn't be whole if I only had 2. Because my husband isn't ready, I can't possible have another without alienating him. This is different than your issue, but the outcome is the same. sometimes we need time to live and enjoy what we have. My children are 3 years apart, and my youngest is 2. Possible if I had any more it will be at least a couple of years from now. Stop trying to figure life out as if you only have a few years to live. There is nothing wrong with only having 1 child, but it seems that you may need to time to enjoy what you have, and not focus on what you don't have. You don't know what life will bring you, and it seems that you haven't a child to have a playmate for your son, you should have one because that's what your husband and you want. I know of friends that are only children, and they have some of the best friends ever, and are not lacking anything. In a different light, if you want more children, maybe it's you working that is standing in your way. Either way, think about what you and your husband want as far as a family is concerned, and go from there.