Is it so bad to have only one child?

Sona - posted on 09/13/2013 ( 3 moms have responded )




Hi everyone,

I have one girl who turns 5 in 4 months.
My husband and I have recently decided that we are happy with one child...we are both very hands-on and we can't imagine involving another baby/child. But I've starting feeling a little sad *sometimes* thinking are we being selfish not to give her a sibling (she says she doesn't want one though)..
The truth is that my husband travels a lot for work and I work part time so we really can't go through the baby thing again...and in addition, I don't handle kids' fights well - I get really upset and depressed. (I suffered from depression a year ago)
I say this coz I know siblings fight a lot and I'm absolutely terrified of that...

Sorry if I'm rambling but I'd really like to hear your I making the biggest mistake by sticking to our decision?


[deleted account]

I have only one child, he is 8 years old, almost 9 now.
I do not think it is selfish at all to have only one child. I think a single child home is the best dynamic for a lot of families--there are a lot of advantages to having only one child for both the parents AND the child.
I get so angry at people when they tell me that we are selfish for not making sacrifices to give our son a sibling.
For one, they don't know my reasons for having only one child, and they don't need to know them. I have one child, and I should not be judged for it. I don't judge others for having 2 kids, or 6 kids, or even 9 kids, and I don't need to know why they chose to have so many kids in order to decide whether they are "selfish" or not, I just assume that they created the family that they wanted, that worked best for them and their children.
Secondly, there is no guarantee he would even like his sibling. I wasn't a big fan of my own sister until we were adults, and even now, I speak to her maybe 6 or 8 times a year. We don't have much in common, she's not a confidant, I don't depend on her for anything. We're friends, I love her because she's my sister, but if we didn't share the same parents, we'd probably never have met. I have plenty of wonder close friends who I chose. My son can choose his friends too, and he will never be lonely.
Third, having only one child actually allows my son to experience a lot of things other kids only dream of. We not only have the available income to afford more experiences, but we don't have to worry about toting around tons of stuff for younger siblings, waiting until ALL the kids are old enough to do certain things. He doesn't have to sit in boredom at the Children's Museum while a younger sibling plays, or have his trip to the History Museum ruined by a screaming, bored toddler who was really too young to tolerate the History Museum.
Fourth, You won't be that haggard mom who spends her entire life driving kids from one activity to the next, and can't even watch her kids enjoy their sports because she is too busy trying to occupy the siblings. You will have time for peaceful homework time at home instead of trying to make your kids read and write in the car and hoping they don't vomit from carsickness. You will never have to miss one kid's soccer game because it is at the same time as the other kid's game (different ages won't be on the same team), so you take one, dad takes one, and you both miss out.
Fifth, 3 is a great number. Most small helicopters and airplanes hold 4 people--so if you want to ride a glass bottom copter over a volcano, you'd have to split up your family of 4 and pay for two rentals. Hot air balloons too, and kayaking is best with a group of 4 including the guide.
Sixth, you don't have to worry about sibling rivalry or splitting your love evenly. Even if you do love both equally, they will both almost always feel like you love the other one more.
I could go on and on an on, but I'm running short on time now. Hope this helped. Don't feel guilty about having only one kid, be proud. I LOVE my one kid family, I love our family dynamic, the simplicity of my life, and the freedom that simplicity allows for us to enjoy and bond with each other to the fullest extent.

Mary - posted on 09/13/2013




No, of course you aren't making a "big mistake". IMO, having another baby JUST because you think your first child needs a sibling would be a pretty crappy reason to have another baby.

Children don't necessarily NEED a sibling to be happy. While my own sister and I are the best of friends, and have great shared childhood memories, there is no guarantee that having a sibling would improve your child or your family's overall life, or that they would even become and/or remain close. I know plenty of people for whom having a sibling has been nothing but a source of pain, conflict, or upheaval for all or most of their life.

To me, the only "good" reason to actively try for another child is because you and your husband both really want another child to love and care for. Doing it because of some sense of misplaced guilt or obligation to your daughter is really not a great reason for adding to your family.

There are a lot of benefits to being an only child...just as many as there are to having a brother or sister. What matters most is that a child is raised with love and the unwavering support of the family that the have, no matter how big or small that family is.


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Gena - posted on 09/14/2013




We also "only" have one child and i understand how you feel. I sometimes think it would be fun for my son to have a sibling just to play with. But on the other hand we see all the possibiltys with having one, financialy we can support him better,we can spend one on one time with him always. We can support him when he is older with anything he would like to learn for example if he wants to take guitar lessons..maybe we couldnt financialy support 4 or more kids to take lesson and buy instruments etc. And we will only have to go through the homework with one:-)
I dont think its selfish to decide on having one kid.The only thing i dont like is when some mothers with more kids feel as if they are more mommys then i am because they have 2kids or more.

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