As an only child, I’m a bit of an anomaly. I can probably count on one hand the number of close friends I’ve had over the years who are also only children. This means that when people find out that I’m an only child they usually have a lot of questions. Well, today I’m here to answer these questions and tell you what being an only child is really like.
I may be spoiled, but not in the way you think.
One of the biggest stereotypes about only children is that we’re spoiled rotten. I may be spoiled, but not necessarily with material things. I’m well aware that my parents provided me with a very comfortable life, but I most definitely did not get every toy that I asked for as a child or a brand new car for my 16th birthday. Instead, I was spoiled with love and support from my parents. They attended every band and chorus concert, every dance show and were always there to help me with homework whenever I needed it.
My relationship with my parents has been the most important relationship to me growing up.
Because it’s just been my parents and me my whole life, I have an extremely close relationship with both of them. Without siblings, my parents were my playmates a lot of the time when I was little. I also rarely had a babysitter because it was always just as easy to bring me along. Now, it’s my parents that I go to when I need advice, whether it’s about school, friends or finding an internship. One of my favorite things to do when I go home for the weekend is to go on coffee dates with my dad, and I still call my mom almost every day, even as a junior in college.
Yes, I do wish I had siblings sometimes.
Even as close as I am with my parents, I do feel like I’m missing out sometimes by not having siblings. I don’t have anyone to create inside jokes with about my parents, and sometimes I can get a little lonely. I also get to see the excitement of my friends as their siblings are getting married and having kids, and wish I could experience that, too.
My friends become family.
Because I never had an older sister to give me advice about boys or a brother to look out for me, my close friends have taken these roles in my life. I often brought a friend along on family outings when I was younger, and I share clothes with my roommates like they’re my sisters. I also have a tendency to adopt my friends’ younger siblings like they’re my own (and make sure I never miss their prom pictures).
Being an only child is a foreign concept for many, but it’s all I’ve ever known, and I can’t really imagine my life being any different. Hopefully, this list has debunked some of the myths and answered your questions about what it’s really like to be an only child.