When I first started thinking about having children I wanted a whole houseful of children. Originally wanting 4 (but settling on 2 after my husband’s insistence), I couldn’t wait for all the good times we would all have together. After experiencing secondary infertility, life took us in another direction and we ended up having one daughter. It was hard for us to accept for a long time because we already knew there were hundreds of great things about having multiple children or children having siblings. With the help of other families with only one child, we began to see all the great things about our family!
Tough Stages Only Once
Every parent has had one stage of raising a child that was just terrible. Ours was potty training, and just thinking about doing it again gives me nightmares! Not having to go through a dreaded stage again is a great reason to be thankful to have on only child.
No Sibling Fighting
It wasn’t until a friend started talking about her two kids fighting that I realized I don’t ever hear sibling quarrels or ‘It’s not fair!’ cries. There are plenty of other annoying and frustrating things I may hear in a day but “Stop looking at me!” isn’t one of them.
More Options for Insurance
We recently had to do some switching with our health insurance and I was pleasantly surprised that we had some flexibility of mixing and matching policies instead of taking the standard “family” plan offered by our employer. By doing so we were able to save a little extra money each month!
Less Financial Stress
For me, financial stability is very important. With one child our monthly expenses are lower because we have fewer people living in our home. It’s also easier to save for braces, a car, or college one day when there is only one that’ll need it.
A Simpler Schedule
Kids have so many options for after school activities today, but balancing and coordinating them all can get pretty chaotic. Having an only child not only means that I have less schedules to coordinate, but I am able to be at most, if not all, of the events.
Traveling is so much fun with one child! There is less to pack and only one child’s schedule to work around. While bedtime is still early, we can pick activities during the day for more specific ages.
Easier to Capture Pictures
This may seem silly, but trying to get one child to pause and look at the camera for a picture is hard enough. Trying to get multiple children to do that? Next to impossible!
Close Family Relationships
Families with an only child are able to spend more one on one time with parents. As a result, close relationships can form easily. There may be no brothers or sisters at home but cousins can form close relationships as well.
Close Friend Relationships
While there aren’t any siblings around, only children have a chance to develop close friendships. Our family tries to set up play dates as often as possible for my daughter so she has chances to spend time with others her age. I can’t wait to see those friendships continue to develop throughout her life.
More ‘Me’ Time
Fewer children equals more ‘me’ time. While there are never enough hours in a day, I enjoy being able to watch TV or clean after she goes to bed each night. I can even squeeze in some ‘me’ time and read a book while I wait for my daughter at her practices without having to wrangle extra children.
Though it wasn’t what I originally pictured or hoped for in my life, I’ve learned to love having an only child. The things I’ve shared here are just the start of an ever-growing list.
Have an only child? Tell me what you love about your triangle family!
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I completely agree. I’m almost 40 now and was an only child. While I did want a sister or a brother for a couple of years during elementary school, I came to totally love being a single child. I now have three kids of my own (two of them were accidents!) and truth be told, sometime fantasize about what it would be like if we only had one. Don’t get me wrong, I love them and wouldn’t trade them for the world, but all the reasons you’ve described are real, especially sibling fighting and no time for myself.. travel gets crazy too and very expensive to travel with 5… so yes, enjoy it! Every story is perfect just the way it is. It all had its pros and cons and nothing is better than the next thing.
We are a triangle family. I love that term. We are very close and our daughter has so much peace and finds so much comfort in getting all our attention and time. We feel blessed to get to be her parents. I see her bond with other friends and cousins to have those “sibling like” relationships.
I love being a triangle family. I was one of 4, and my mother always seemed spread thin. With only my one, she has all of me!!
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