Studies show that children from small families receive more individualized parental attention than children from large families. Furthermore, parents of small families consider their children as precious jewels worthy of their time and love. Parents of small families also are more nurturing towards their children. Because of the treatment that children in small families receive from their parents, they have a high sense of self. Contrast this to children from large families. Their parents are seldom involved in their rearing. They usually rear themselves and are left to their own devices. Their parents do not consider them as unique and special individuals but part of a cog. Children in large families are not raised to consider themselves as individual. In fact, it is the opposite, they are told that they are not special nor unique but the same as everyone else. Parents in large families are distant and nonnurturing as they do not have the time to care individually for their children. Their children are usually raised as a group. As a result of the groupthink mentality in large families, children have little or no sense of individuality nor of self.
While you make some great points, I don't agree with all of them. I am a product of the baby-boom generation. Naturally, I am from a large family. There were 7 siblings in all. We all felt that our parents wanted us and loved us. When we were young our parents played with us, and read to us. They were supportive in our school activities and beyond. To this day we all continue to be a very clos-knit family. We live only a few miles of each other,..none of us chose to leave the state to go and live somewhere else.
I have a friend who also has 7 children. She once told me that she made a point of spending 10 minutes a day or more with each child when they were growing up, She and her husband have a beautiful relationship with their children. All 7 of her children are college graduates. Including 1 pharmicest, 1 high-school principle, and a registered nurse who later went back to school to become an attorney. My friend and her husband are both blue collar workers.
I believe that some people lack the ability to be a quality parent because they are self absorbed with the day to day afairs in dealing with life. They are not willing to put in the time needed in order to successfully raise a family.
I, too, am a baby boomer; however, unlike most baby boomers, I came from a small family. In fact, I am an only child. As an only child, I received individualized attention from my parents. I also was one of a few affluent families in my neighhorhood. Because of my familial status, I was exposed to activities that children from large families were not exposed to such as eating in fine restaurants, dancing lessons, museum trips, and fashion shows.
I was also exposed to classical music and attend cultural events every weekend. Of course, I had total access to my parents anytime that I wanted. I had my own room and my own space. Let me digress. Not only me but other children from small families in my neighborhood were often the affluent ones with nice clothes, dancing lessons, and access to cultural and intellectual events.
In contrast, the children from large families in my neighborhood were often impoverished, feral, and otherwise disadvantaged. They had little or no medical care. In my elementary school, if it was not for the inhouse nurse and other medical staff, many children from large families would not have received medical care at all. In my elementary school, it was easy to discern the differences between children from small and large families. The former were well dressed, well-behaved high achievers while the latter were often ill kempt, rowdy low achievers. The latter were quite disruptive in class. In essence, they were at the bottom of the school pecking order. Even the teachers treated them the worst. I remember a sixth grade teacher discussing a large family of 20 children, stating that the children will end up to be dissolute.
It is a well known fact that children from large families are more likely to come from impoverished backgrounds than children from small families. From my observation, parental involvement was nil in the large families at my elementary school. Children from such families often raised themselves and were left on their own, often to deleterious results. It was the parents of small families who were involved with their children.
That was why there was a rift between the children from small and large families at my school. In fact, the children from small families would often deride the children from large families. Again, I am digressing. Children in large families have little or no sense of self. They are treated as part of the group by their parents, instead of individuals. The concept of individuality is totally nonexistent in the average large family. Children in large families have a group consensus mentality. In essence, individuality in the large family is sublimated to the family whole.
If you noticed people from large families, they have an aversion to the concept of individuality and the concept of self, believing it to be a bad thing. Children in large families are raised never to consider themselves or their needs. The culture of the large family is entirely different from that of the small families. Children in large families have little and/or no access to their parents. The only people children in large families have access to are siblings as the parental figure is in the background. This is quite the opposite to the small family environment where the parent is present to guide the child. Children raised in small families just have a healthier sense of self period because their individuality is encouraged and prized! Parents just cannot parent a large family effectively-that is why many parent force their oldest and/or older children to raise their younger siblings. This is a well-known fact!
I think it is not the size of a family that matters as much as it is the background of parents. If they choose to have a large family, it is usually because they have certain values (usually religious). Parents who care more about having a large number of children come from families with similar beliefs and they usually wouldn't expose their children to finer things in life even if they had more time, money.
I believe that parents who let their kids listen to and appreciate classical music, who encourage them to explore more refined interests, who take them to museums and generally stimulate young brains of their offspring are not the cookie cutters parents who struggle with finances and peddle two jobs. I believe that affluent parents won't choose to have too many kids because they like comfort themselves, they are usually coming from smaller families and they appreciate where they are in their lives.
People who come from larger families usually stress the importance of being close together and having a close-knit relationship with other members of family. They value the human factor and emotional aspect of being a part of a big whole above getting more material things.
You are so correct in your premise. The culture of the small family stresses affluence, individuality, and belief in the attainment of the finer things of life. Parents of small families are indeed more affluent on the whole than parents of large families. Children in small families have more disposable income than children from large families. This disposable income means that there are more monies for such children to participate in travel, dancing schools, music lessons, attending plays, and other intellectual/cultural activities. Children in small families do not live a life of financial struggle. Children from small families have a prosperity consciousness because they grew up in affluent circumstances. They are often ambitious because they want to retain their affluent status. Education, academic and cultural attainment are extremely important in small families. They also have small families themselves when they mature.
On the other hand, the culture of the large family is usually one of struggle and impoverishment. The average large family is often either impoverished, lower income, or near the lower income level. Parents in large families only have monies for the rudiments of life, if that. There are monies for luxuries and things beyond the necessities. As a result of living in want, many children from large families develop quite a poverty consciousness. They are used to living poor and do not yearn for anything else. To the average person from a large, material things do not mean anything, they are quite comfortable living very meagerly. Educational and cultural activities are of little and/or no importance in the average large families. They are just content with the mere necessities and nothing more. Most children from large families remain at their poverty level, tending to have large families of their own. You are so correct that children from large families do not value material attainment. They have also a group mentality and do not value the individual.
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