Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Only Children=Diseased?!

I have no idea yet if this child will be my only child, but I certainly won't feel like I've failed her somehow if that's the case. I guess I knew in some disconnected way that having only one child is viewed critically in our society, but this article at Work It, Mom! illustrates an only child's frustrations about raising an only child. She comments, after reading a Time article debunking the myths about only children, that a single person is responsible for a societal belief that "[b]eing an only child is a disease in itself."

Do we really believe that?

When I've mentioned in casual conversation that this might be our only child, I've gotten responses that suggest I will change my mind and some that suggest they would never make the same decision, but I've never felt like the people I'm talking to think my child will be disadvantaged because of it. Is that what they're really thinking? Or is this just blown out of proportion?

For the record, I kept thinking about the scene from the movie Parenthood where Rick Moranis' character and his wife are discussing having another child. He's against the idea because he's (very creepily) trying to cultivate a little genuis and claims that most geniuses have been only children or have had "sibs" five years apart. His wife ends up screaming, "They're not sibs. They're babies!"

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