Only 1 child and I find it hard to cope.(17 Posts)
Hi I'm new to this, but seeking advice. Can anyone give some advice/support for bringing up an only child? We are unable to have more children and struggled for 5 years of IVF to have this little one. Are there any other parents there who can give us help? We try to spend so much time with her, taking her to places, arranging play dates, but am constantly worrying and feeling guilty that she is lonely. My little girl is 8. Thanks :-(
Hello Molly - I doubt she is lonely but learning to entertain yourself/feel comfortable in your own company is a valuable life skill. So remember to give her time and space to read, play on her own, watch a DVD, daydream without worrying that she is pining for siblings
My DD is 9 and we don't have family/cousins close by. She takes part in a team sport which takes up a large chunk of Saturday and means she's doing something she loves with children her age and getting out of our village.
When we go on holiday we chose somewhere with a communal pool and kids club so she can hang out with us or find kids her age if she wishes.
Whilst I do invite friends over for tea/ the occasional sleepover or along on a trip, we don't go overboard with playdates/activities; the people she most likes spending time with are (fortunately) DH and me
I wouldn't have thought from what you have said, that she is lonely, but I would echo what Ecclefechan has said about letting her develop her own skills without constantly being entertained.
My 12 year old is an only but we have no family or cousins either.
We don't go mad for sleepovers and stuff either, she really isn't bothered.
She absolutely hates the idea of having a sibling and always has. She is very 3 orientated, loves family cuddles, but mixes with other kids as and when it suits her.
Hi Ecclefechan, Thanks for this. We don't have any family near by, but spend all our holidays with her cousins. I suppose she treats them as brothers and sisters who just live a long way away. I see that there are a lot of other people out there in the same situation, and it's nice to see so many people supporting each other. *Note to self, be more positive and enjoy every moment we have together.
Hi Molly, I have just posted on your other thread, but glad to see you feel a bit more positive knowing others are in the same boat. I think there are a lot of us out there, but it can feel lonely when everyone around you seems to have the perfect nuclear family.
That should have said "perfect" nuclear family
Our Dd (6) is an only with cousins nearby. We have decided this year to go on holiday with another family as I think she is of an age where she would prefer to have someone other than us for company but she doesn't seem lonely and is more than able to entertain herself. We have children over for tea and the odd sleepover but she doesn't go mad for them either. We are going away together (just me and her) next weekend and she is really excited about our 'road trip'.I enjoy her company and I think she enjoys mine.
I would have loved a sibling for her but it was sadly not to be, so I do try and concentrate on the positives and I comfort myself with the thought that she can't really miss something she has had no experience of IYSWIM.
You sound lovely BTW, so try not to worry too much.
Take a look at this thread
It started in 2005 and is still going strong with people talking about the many positives of having just one child.
Molly I was an only child, of a single, working mum so had to entertain myself a lot of the time, and I absolutely loved it. I wouldn't change it for the world. Being an only child doesn't have to mean loneliness (although I know it does for some), it can also mean she becomes self-sufficient, independent, imaginative, and comfortable in adult company. I had various 'cousins' scattered around the country who I saw for holidays and the odd weekend away, and made lots of friends at school. I never once pined for a sibling and have a lovely relationship with DM. You sound like fab parents and I'm sure your little girl is thriving!
You are right to focus on the positives. No-one has the perfect family. Your DD is lucky to have 2 parents so loving and prepared to spend time with her.
DS age 9 is an only and we live in a small village with few children. I do think having a dog has helped with companionship & I send them out into the garden to play ball.
DS was quite aware of being an only at his last school because he was the only one in his class but since he changed schools (for unrelated reasons) that's no longer the case. Most of his social life outside school is through his sport. He's being going to the same club for 4 years now and every holiday the first priority in his eyes is make sure he can get on a course there.
We are planning a move to somewhere with more families/facilities though so he does not need us to ferry him around for a social life as he gets older. I'm told we should look at cul-de-sacs on new estates but that is a step too far !
Hi darksideofthemooncup, Blithereens and iseenodust. Thank you for your kind words and suggestions. Its made me think , before I had her, I worried constantly that I'd never have a child, now I worry about all things 'only child'. If I carry on worrying, she'll have moved out and gone to Uni and then I'll realise it's too late. Thanks to Ecclefechan too (for the thread), I'll take a peep at it. *here's to more positive vibes and a more relaxed Mummy!
I'll drink to that!
Just enjoy indulging (and ignoring )your precious daughter. And have a listen to this.
She sounds like a great girl, and has a full life.
At 8, I had a 4yr old stepbrother... we did our own things, and I went to my dad's a lot, so actually felt like an only child in many ways.
Oh Ecclefechan, thanks for that!
My poor DD aged 6 just walked in when I was playing that, and has just me why I'm crying and hugging her so tightly. Happy, bitter sweet tears! xx
I like the original Abba version much more than the Mama Mia one. Here's another that gets me.
I am a very happy only child. With loving and attentive parents who let you have friends over to play / sleepovers you can be happy and not lonely x
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