Whenever I tell people I’m an only child, they give me a skeptical glare then say something judgmental or casually insulting, like Oh really? You don’t act like an only child,” or, “Yeah, that makes a lot of sense actually.” This is among the few things that haven’t changed with age. No matter how old I get, I’ll always be an only child. It’d be cute if it wasn’t so condescending.
So naturally, I wonder what the fundamental differences are between only children and multiples. Is the only child syndrome a real phenomenon or merely a scare tactic to guilt parents into having a second child for the purposes of entertaining the first? Along my journey to find answers to these questions I read articles, studies, and compared my family to other families I’m close to. There are so many key factors that affect the answers to this question like culture, economic status, geography,gender,single parenting,two-parenting, divorce,etc.
With all things considered, I still don’t buy it. As an only child was I spoiled rotten? Spoiled,yes. Rotten, no. I didn’t have a problem sharing or making friends, in fact I was popular. Was I bossy? Yes, but I’m a Leo so that comes with the territory. Did I struggle in school? Ha, I was valedictorian and class president. But don’t take my word for it read the research for yourself.