jump to last post 1-3 of 3 discussions (7 posts)

Children Do Not Need Siblings To Thrive- Non-Onlies vs Onlies

  1. gmwilliams profile image84
    gmwilliamsposted 6 years ago

    Studies show that children without siblings are happier and better adjusted.    There was even an article by Susan Newman, Ph.D. in Psychology Today which stated that children are more likely to suffer verbal and emotional abuse at the hands of their siblings.  Dr. Newman also stated that children with siblings indulge in more competition and upmanship.   Children with siblings also suffer from shaky self-esteem because of constant comparison by parents.

    Of course, there is the issue of birth order which means the preferential treatment of one child while another child is treated quite differentially(often in a negative sense).  With siblingship, there is intense competition with the parents for financial, psychological, and emotional resources.   This means that siblings often play mindgames with each other to vy for the most parental attention. 

    Within multichild families, there is a prevalence of favoritism of one child over other children which often has deleterious effects on sibling rrelationships which extend into adulthood.  Conversely,  in multichild families, some children are not favored and sometimes, scapegoated by parents and/or other family members.   Children with siblings are often slated into rigid familial roles which follow them into adulthood with either positive and/or negative consequences.   

    Of course, when there are siblings, there is sibling drama which often includes sibling rivalry.   Sibling rivalry is de rigueur in families where there is more than one child.   Many children suffer from the aftereffects of sibling rivalry.    This sibling rivalry is tranferred into backstabbling, upmanship, and general competiveness in peer relationships.

    Only children have parents and peers to relate to.   Studies show that only children are happier and more self-confident than those with siblings.   They are allowed to be themselves without the constant interference of siblings.   They have the freedom to explore and use their ultimate potential.  They are also not subjected to the insidious act of comparison and/or slated into rigid familial roles that children with sibilngs often must endure. 

    Because only children have more outside friends and/or indulge in a variety of activities, they are exposed to a greater variety of people which make them more culturally savvy.    Also, onlies interact more with their parents which gives them adult mannerisms and behaviors.    This interaction with parents helps onlies to develop faster because parents, as adults, usually have more knowledge and expertise than a sibling who is usually of the same and/or of similar age.   This explains why children with siblings are more childish in their mannerisms and vocabulary-they mainly interact with other children instead of their parents.  In other words, children learn from adults, not other children of the same and/or similar age.   In other words, onlies are not "missing anything" by not having siblings at all.   In the words of a noted only, Betty White, she stated that she never felt lonely and when she did, she invited friends over!    Onlies and non-onlies, what do you think about this?

  2. WryLilt profile image91
    WryLiltposted 6 years ago

    Depends on the situation.

    I was an only child but due to homeschooling I was very stilted socially. Not to mention my mum was bipolar.

    Only children need to be exposed to more social situations to avoid being introverted over achievers.

    1. gmwilliams profile image84
      gmwilliamsposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      Yes, of course, there are ways that only children can gain social skills with siblingship.   There are a myriad of cultural and intellectual activities to choose from such as dancing school, boy and girl scouts, honor societies, and related host of activities.   Your being a only child is a totally nonissue regarding being stilted socially.   Your mother should have involved you in more activities.   I know tons of only children who are quite social and outgoing.  This is because their parents enrolled them in a myriad of activities or they had lots of friends. 

      I know children with siblings who are totally socially awkward.  In my elementary school, there was a girl who was from a large family.  She preferred to be alone and not socialize with other children.  I have a cousin who is one of 8 children who is extremely shy as one of my maternal aunts who is one of 10 children.  So do not use the issue of being an only children as an excuse for your being stilted socially.  Come off it!

      Also FYI, there is nothing inherently wrong with being introverted.   Introversion is an acceptable personality type just like extroversion is.  Not every child is outgoing and social.  There are some children who are naturally introverted and prefer to be to themselves.  This should be accepted- not everyone is cut out to be an extrovert just like not every child should have siblings.  Enough said!

  3. recommend1 profile image69
    recommend1posted 6 years ago

    I thnk that taking such a narrow view of children in a family is typical of modern social sciences and ultimately a total crock of poo.

    Just one issue of many - Where are the balancing advantages of being born into a competetive environment, learning early responsibilities and learning of a vast range of life lessons that so many modern adults clearly never learned and never will.  In other places we bemoan the poor behaviour of people, our grasping inhuman politicians, the collapse of the socil side of the law with states 'kidnapping' children and the abysmal record of childrens homes and fostering - all this comes about through unwarranted interference by short-sighted immature psychologists !!!!

    Did I miss anything big_smile

    1. gmwilliams profile image84
      gmwilliamsposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      Only children learn responsibilities also.   In fact, in my elementary school and neighborhood, only children learn how to cook early, do chores, and assumed other responsibilities because their parents were working.  Do not subscribe to the notion that only children with siblings earn early responsibilities.  In fact, children with siblings, especially the oldest one, has responsibilities enforced upon them at very early stages while the other siblings, especially the younger ones, gets off free. 

      Perhaps, you have never heard of the parentified child.  This child is usually the oldest child who has to assume responsibilities before his/her time.   These children have no childhoods and adolescence to mention off.  Their childhoods and adolescence are spent caring for younger siblings.  Think of the Duggar family where the oldest children are glorified chattel slaves.  No child should endure this-all children should have a childhood as unencumbered as possible.  There is often a penalty which comes with siblingship.  Children with siblings are often less free to express themselves and have less freedom overall than only children.   Children do not need to grow up in a competitive environment in order to thrive.  That premise is totally antediluvean.   Only children often have truer and more mature relationships with others because they did not have to constantly grow up in an environment where there was constant rivalry which can be quite energy draining.   As a result, only children can devote their energy into things that matter!

      1. recommend1 profile image69
        recommend1posted 6 years agoin reply to this

        I can't agree with this.   I was the older child responsible for my twin sisters and doing 'chores', I find now that most people are not irresposnsible in life but are ignorant of their responsibilities.   Antideluvian, I don't think so, positing extremes as your example is easy but misleading - most children in these situations thrive and become adults - all my friends who are single child are spoiled, feminised and have shown a remarkable lack of responsibility and adult behaviour, even in advanced age.  They do fit in quite well with the current 'lost' generation with no jobs or future and no idea what to do with what otherwise would be valuable free time.

        1. gmwilliams profile image84
          gmwilliamsposted 6 years agoin reply to this

          It is not the fact that they are single children.  It is how they were raised.  I know only children from my childhood who started cooking when they were ten years old.  Also they performed chores because their parents had full time jobs.  So, do not be stereotypical about only children not being responsible.  Being an only child is totally a nonissue in this- it is HOW they were raised by their parents.   I know children who have siblings who are irresponsible e.g. many of my classmates who were in large families(especially the younger children) cannot take care of themselves because an older sibling was always taking care of them.    I supervised a coworker who had sibings and at 40 years of age, did not know how to wash nor to cook.  So do not bring your "premise" to me, what you have presented regarding only children not knowing responsible is totally lacking.   Conversely, there are older children whose were parentified so much as children that so adults, they AVOID all types of responsibility and live their childhood as adults.