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Advantages and Disadvantages of Being an only child

In the twenty-first century many couples have decided to have only one child for a variety of reasons, including: personal preference, family planning, financial and emotional or physical health issues and educational advantages. Some children feel good without siblings, others wish they had a brother or a sister but, in fact, the advantages and disadvantages of being an only child continue being a matter of debate and nobody can say if the disadvantages prevail over the advantages or vice versa.

The main advantage of being an only child is that parents are much more focused con raising him, so he receives a great deal of attention because there is no other sibling to compete for it. Besides, having only one child also allows the parent to be more attuned to the emotional needs of him because there is not another child whose needs take the parents away from him. Attunement to the emotional needs of a child is crucial for positive emotional and cognitive development in children. The only child is supposed to be very independent and he has to learn to face difficulties and solves them by himself.

On the other hand, the main disadvantage of being an only child is that he usually spends much time alone and because he is always the centre of attention of his family, he begins to believe he is the most important person and could become a bit selfish and unsociable. Another disadvantage is that an only child is under a lot of pressure from their parents and they may focus all their dreams on him, and assume that he would fulfill them. Another disadvantage is that a single child does not have sisters or brothers to share his feelings and to confide in each other, so he does not know this especial sibling relationship. This relationship is actually one of the best vehicles for children to learn how to handle relationship struggles and to learn about conflict resolution as they grow up.
To sum up, the trouble with the debate over having only one child or more children is that there is no right answer. Taking both, advantages and disadvantages into consideration, I believed that being an only child is not better than being the one with siblings. Because parenting presents one of life’s most complex challenges, we will never know for sure which precise combination of environmental factors leads to optimal development. However, if parents choose to have only one child for any reason, there is not necessarily anything wrong with that if they create other supports to make sure that the only child can simulate the benefits that come from having sibling relationships.