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Only Children- Stand Up and Rejoice!
The MOST MALIGNED Birth Order
Only Children- The MOST MALIGNED of All Birth Orders
Only children are the most maligned of all birth orders. This is because we live in a society which glorifies, even deifies having siblings. Parents are constantly inculcated, even admonished by relatives, bystanders, neighbors, friends, family members, relatives, associates, and other peers to have at least 2 children because nothing is better for a child than to have a sibling. Society further indoctrinates people into believing that having a sibling is the right thing to do. As a result of this conditioning, only children are considered as outsiders, pariahs, and even beyond the pale. Furthermore, only children are told overtly and covertly that they are spoiled, self-centered, little emperors/empresses, lonely, and socially awkward.
This negative stereotype was fabricated by educators, psychologists, and social scientists in an era when large families were the norm and all the rage. These educators, psychologists, and social scientists viewed large families as the ideal prototypical family. As people became more educated and enlightened in addition to better advancements and availability in contraceptive technology, there was a marked increase in small families. During the 1960s and 1970s, psychologists, social psychologists, and sociologists saw the advantages and benefits of small families over that of large families. Such studies confirmed that small families lived better, parents are more able to educate their children, and children are better adjusted as adults because of the individualized attention they received from their parents.
As only children were a minority throughout history in a culture and society of siblings, they were subjected to negative stereotyping. People often misunderstand and misjudge only children because in the former's eyes they are so unlike so many children they have encounter and know. Many people have not had that much contact with only children so they wrongly categorize them, viewing them as strange, odd, and even weird. To them, only children are considered many of these negative pejoratives because in their eyes, the latter have no siblings to interact with. They contend that children who do not have siblings are sorely missing in crucial skills and are maladjusted. However, recent studies show that only children are the most adjusted children as they have no siblings to compete with, constantly vying for parental attention, time, and resources. Furthermore as a result of growing up in an adult environment, only children are advanced intellectually in addition to having adult mannerisms and complex vocabularies at young ages. They also interact with their parents much more than children with siblings do,
The MOST Individualistic & Creative of ALL Birth Orders
Only Children as the MOST INDIVIDUALISTIC and CREATIVE of all Birth Orders
Only children are the most individualistic of all birth orders. They have been raised by their parents to assert and value, even rejoice in their individuality. They are appreciated for whom they actually are. They are not constantly and incessantly placed into categories like children with siblings are e.g. "the smart one", "the pretty one", "the athletic one", "the talented one", "the slow one", and " the quiet one." They are allowed the freedom to be who they are without such categorization. They also are not constantly compared to others like children with siblings. They are allowed, even encouraged to be individuals in ways that children with siblings are not.
Only children furthermore do not have to endure sibling rivalry and other forms of sibling drama. They are free to express themselves freely without constant sibling criticisms, put downs, and name calling. As a result of this marked individuality, only children have great self-esteem and self-assurance. They are have high self-confidence and awareness of their innate talents and abilities. They also are not afraid to be alone and stand out from the crowd. They are very comfortable in their own skin and do not need others to give them a sense of self-esteem or to keep them company. They are quite capable of keeping their own company and entertaining themselves.
Only children are also the most creative of all birth orders. Since they do not have siblings, they have time to pursue and enjoy solitary hobbies such as reading, writing, sketching, and working on the computer. They are quite adept and happy at keeping themselves company. Many of the most creative people are only children. The late actress Hedy Lamarr was an avid artist in her spare time. Condoleezza Rice is a prodigious piano player aside from her massive political career. Part of their prodigious creativity is their immensely vivid imagination. They are some of the most creative people around. Charlize Theron remarked that as a child, she would constantly create scenarios that she would act in.
Having GREATER Exposure to Cultural & Intellectual Activities
Only Children Participate and Exposed MORE to Cultural and Intellectual Activities
Only children have more opportunities to pursue and be exposed to cultural and intellectual activities such as dancing/language/music lessons, museums, overseas educational trips/travel, attending operas, plays, and going to fine restaurants than children with siblings who do not have such opportunities. As a result of being constantly exposed to cultural and intellectual activities, only children develop an appreciation for the fine things of life. They also are exposed to other children and people of different cultures which broadens their cultural and intellectual horizons.
Participation in myriad cultural and intellectual activities helps only children develop premium interactive and social skills in addition to social savvy. They furthermore are academically ahead because they are exposed to a very wide variety of cultural and intellectual things. They develop a cosmopolitan, broad minded, and universalistic attitude because of exposure and participation in different cultural and intellectual activities.
Receiving BETTER, SUPERIOR Health Care
Only Children Receive BETTER Health Care
Only children receive better quality and more consistent medical, dental, and overall health care as their parents have the economic means to provide such care. Besides that, parents of only children are more aware what occurs with them. They do not have to divide their time among many children so it is much easier for them to be constantly aware of what is occurring with their only child. Only children because of more parental time and resources receive better, even superior medical, dental, and health care than children with siblings.
Many children with siblings receive inconsistent medical, dental, and overall health care because such care cost monies that their parents can ill afford. If it were not for school medical programs, these children would not receive medical, dental, and overall health care at all. The consistent medical, dental, and overall health care that only children receive pays massive dividends. Only children tend to be healthier than children with siblings. Because only children grow up in affluent circumstances with better nutrition coupled with consistent, superior medical care, they are healthier in their later years and are less likely to get alzheimers disease in their old age.
Misperceptions of PARENTS of Only Children
PARENTS of Only Children-Setting the RECORD Straight
So many people have misconceptions, even misperceptions of parents of only children. They are considered to be the ultimate overprotective, even helicopter parents. They are neither. They are very caring and involved parents who are avidly concerned about their children's welfare. They want the very best for their children. They have very intense relationships with their children. They do not have to worry about dividing their time because there is only one child in the family. They are freely accessible to their children in a way that parents of multiple children are not and cannot be.
There are those who consider parents of only children to be selfish because they did not provide their child with a sibling. Parents of only children are the most caring, loving, unselfish, and thoughtful parents. They have put much thought and foresight into the planning of having only children. They chose to have only children in order to give the latter the most opportunities in life. They also want their children to be the very best people possible. They believe that by having only children, there will be monies to provide whatever opportunities there are and that such children can develop and use their utmost talents.
HIGH Achievers Par Excellence
Only Children are HIGH Achievers
In school, only children are usually high academic achievers. They are the most likely to pursue tertiary levels of education and beyond. This is partially due to their parents emphasizing academic and intellectual achievement. Parents of only children routinely read and engage their only children in intellectual discussion and related activities, Chelsea Clinton remarked during an interview that as a young child, her parents routinely engaged her in intense political discussions. It is commonplace in only child households that parents and children have adult level discussions. Parents of only children engage their children in ways that parents of multichild families do not.
Parents of only children provide them with myriad intellectual stimuli such as books, educational videos, and computers. The overwhelming majority of only children are quite avid and voracious readers. Parents of only children simply have the economic means to give their children the best environment for their children to academically and intellectually thrive. They have more monies to allot for their children's education and are able to save for their educational future. Furthermore, only children realize the importance of education as they grow up in affluent environment, making them aware that they must attain a certain level of education in order to retain such a lifestyle.
SO Happy & Adjusted
Only Children are VERY Happy, Content, and Well-Adjusted
Psychologists have stated that only children are the most happiest and well adjusted children. To reiterate, they are this way because they never had to compete with siblings and be subjected to sibling games. There is also less stress in 1 child households than there is in multichild household where attention, time, and parental resources are stretched in many ways. In 1 child households, there tend to be less tension between parent and child and between couples. In such households, parents have time for each other as well as time for their only children.
Only children are the recipients of individualized parental attention, care, and attention. They are the center of their parents' universe so to speak. They are not dethroned like children with siblings are. Since they were never dethroned, they know that they will never be cast aside and are comfortable in the fact that they have their parents' undivided love. They also know that they have their parents' attention nor do they incessantly have to vie for such. As a result, they are quite happy, even content in addition to be well-adjusted because their emotional and psychological needs were met by their parents.
Only But NEVER Lonely
Only Children Lonely? NO WAY.....
The common stereotype about only children is that they are lonely because they have no siblings. Well, such a preposterous conception is far from the truth. It is a reflection of the cultural and societal sibling mindset. Children do not need siblings to play with or for companionship for that matter. Only children have relationships with friends, peers, and cousins. They also meet other children from their varied cultural, intellectual, and social activities. They are encouraged by their parents to have friends and bring them over. They are the ones who are likely to have more friends and associates than children with siblings who are more likely to have less friends and primarily associate with their siblings.
Only children do not think it is strange being alone. In fact, they embrace, even relish being alone. They are comfortable in their own skin, pursuing their hobbies. They can endlessly keep themselves busy hours on end. They are fiercely independent and self-sufficient, always creating ways to entertain themselves. They are the ones who associate with others not because of an incessant need and fear of being alone but because they enjoy others' company. They are not afraid of being and acting alone, seeking their own counsel and even going their own way.
Only Children, Well-Behaved and Self-Controlled
As a result of the individualized and undivided attention, time, and care only children receive from their parents, they tend to be well-behaved and self-controlled. Furthermore, their behavior and containment are results of having to grow up in an adult environment where they absorb adult mannerisms and behavior quite early. They usually are not behavioral problems in school. They interact well with other children and are the least likely to engage in fights and other skirmishes like children with siblings are apt to do. They are the most peaceful and joyous children to be around as they did not grow up with siblings thus learning competitive and other backbiting behavior.
Only children are able to play together without fighting which is oftentimes de rigueur with children with siblings. Children with siblings are known to be more virulent, petty, catty, and demonstrate more gamesmanship towards others than only children do. They are also more likely to be bullies as they have either indulged or experienced such behavior from their siblings. As only children are well behaved, other people welcome and enjoy having them around. They know that they will be contained and know how to keep amiable company with adults as they have grown up in and are familiarized with an adult environment.
Possessing a HIGH Sense of Self
Only Children Are Not Selfish
Only children are not selfish in the least. They just have a high sense of self-respect and self-regard. They also have a high sense of self. They are quite aware of their boundaries, assertive, and adamantly refuse to permit anyone to take advantage of them. They do not have the self-esteem difficulties, issues, and problems that children with siblings usually have. Children with siblings have a poor sense of individuation and self.
As a result of not having siblings, only children are very free to develop and be themselves. Furthermore, they do not have the emotional and psychological baggage and damage that having and being involved with siblings entail. This makes only children the least damaged and most self-assured of all birth order types.
VERY CLOSE Parent-Child Relationships
Parent-Only Children Relationships
The relationship between only children and their parents are often intense, loving, and precious. Parents are oftentimes their only children's best friends. Their relationship with their parents are on a very individualized level which aid in their development. As a result of such parent-child closeness, they are more mature and thoughtful in comparison to children whose primary relationship was with other siblings and not their parents.
Only children treasure and cherish the relationships they have with their parents and would not have any other way. They see their parents as people and appreciate their more experienced perspective on life. After parents are the first people that their children interact with. Parents are also their children's first teachers. Only children learn a wide variety of things and gain vast amounts of knowledge from interacting with their parents. They also utilize their intellectual skills to an advanced degree.
Only Children Are Not Attention Seeking at All
Contrary to what people choose to believe, only children do not crave nor seek attention because they receive all the attention they need from their parents. Ellen Peck, author and schoolteacher, in her book The Joy of the Only Child indicated that only children are very low keyed because they receive individualized attention from their parents. Ms. Peck asserted that it is children with siblings and particularly those from large families who seek and crave attention because they received very little or no attention from their parents.
Since only children receive parental attention, they really do not have to seek attention elsewhere. They always have their emotional and psychological needs met by their parents so it is futile for them to crave attention. Their parents are there for them when the former need them. It is children in multichild families who do not have their emotional and psychological needs met who are always seeking attention, sometimes from the wrong sources.
Only Children Can and DO Share
There is this misperception that only children cannot and do not share because they did not have siblings to share with. What an inane belief. Only children are some of the most generous and sharing people around. Typical only children grow up in affluent surroundings with more than enough. They are the ones more likely to share their toys and other possessions. Ms. Peck in her book The Joy of the Only Child confirmed in a study that only children shared because they had more whereas it was the children with siblings who were least likely to share because they had so little growing up. She pointed out how children with siblings grabbed and held on to as many toys as possible.
Only children furthermore have their own space and are not threatened when such space is invaded. They have emotional, mental, and psychological ownership of their lives. Children with siblings with limited space tend to be selfish because they have so little space that they fight for whatever space is available. Many children with siblings share because they are forced to share. They share things but reluctantly because they seldom if never have anything that they can call their own. Only children, by contrast, have their own things that they are willing to share. They do not mind sharing because they know it is theirs. They do not have to fight for territoriality like children with siblings constantly do.
The ONLY CHILD Manifesto
MANIFESTO for Only Children and Their Parents
Being an only child is the best thing in the world. Only children be proud and unapologetic regarding who you are. Stand up to those in the sibling culture and society. Every child does not have or need siblings. Only children are happy in their own essence. They do not have to assume emotional and psychological roles that children with siblings must assume on a daily basis to curry parental attention and favor. They have more financial, emotional, and psychological resources devoted to them. They have more access to varied cultural activities. They also have a better quality and attain higher educational levels.
Only children have a higher standard of living and are used to the best because they grew up in affluent and/or socioeconomically viable environments. They tend to be the most educated and successful adults. They also have the least children of all birth orders. They are the best parents of only children as they were only children themselves and will not subject such children to the unconscious prejudice that parents who have siblings subject their only children to. People have no idea about only children, usually making uninformed and uneducated assumptions. It is about time to put all such stereotypical assumptions and ideas in the grave where they belong.
Parents of only children say to these critics that you value quality over quantity and that you have got it perfect the first time. Subconsciously parents who critique parents of only children are simply jealous of the latter. Yes, you parents of only children are leading and living the life other parents secretly wish they had but refuse to acknowledge it.
Becoming Increasingly Accepted & Mainstream
Illustrious Only Children Include:
Only children are now 20% of the families presently and the only child population will continue to grow! Only children are no longer considered to be outcasts. In fact, only child families are now considered legitimate and accepted as any family. Intelligent and educated people are now seeing the advantages of having 1 child families both for them and particularly their children. They know that families does not necessarily compose of having 2 or more children.
Illustrious only children include among its ranks the great Anthony Hopkins, Chelsea Clinton, the fabulous Betty White (who just gets better with age), Cynthia Nixon, Nancy Reagan, comedic geniuses and one of a kinds Robin Williams and Jerry Lewis who is one of the most unselfish people in the world(working tirelessly in the Muscular Dystrophy telethon every Labor Day), the late comedian and actress Anne Meara, the late Frank Sinatra, Tiger Woods, Leonardo DiCaprio, the great, unique actor of all actors Robert DiNiro, Bill Bradley, the late Margaret Truman, Rudolph Giuliani, the late Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the late Hedy Lamarr, the late Carroll O'Connor, Academy Award Winners Jennifer Connelly, Charlize Theron, Natalie Portman, and Adrien Brody.
More famous only children include the eerily prodigious child actress Kiernan Shipka(more adult and confident than many adult actresses), author Maria Riva, actress, author, and entrepreneur Jill St. John, actress and author Swoosie Kurtz, the ever classy legends Lauren Bacall and Lena Horne, singer Alicia Keyes, superstar Lawrence Fishbourne, authors John Updike and Russell Baker, the late Ginger Rogers, Jean Harlow, Phyllis Diller, and Condoleeza Rice. Only children are the wave of the future. So the world had better get used to only children because they have arrived and are staying for good. No longer are only children going to permit the sibling culture and society define and judge them. Only children are beyond fabulous. They are special and the most unique of all birth orders. In other words, they simply rock!
For Further Information Regarding The Only Child
More Hubs About Only Children
- Having an Only Child
Read about only-child statistics, stigmas of the only child and traits of an only child. Learn the advantages and disadvantages of having an only child and reasons for having only one child.
© 2011 Grace Marguerite Williams