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Pleased for friend but ....

(24 Posts)
EyePeam Mon 22-Jun-09 17:30:32

... ds is only child and highly likely to remain that way, not by choice. Am reconciling myself to that - but always thought I'd have two children.

ALL my friends, and I mean ALL, who have children have more than one, or are about to have number two. Exception is one of my closest friends, who's son is a year older than ds. Her dh was adamant that he didn't want more children and she'd (with sadness) accepted that and so she was my one friend with just the one child - we go on holiday together, we live near each other and our boys play well together. I'd kind of got it in my head that they would help to fulfil some form of sibling-ship need for one another.

but now she's announced that she's pregnant, and of course I'm happy for her, it's what she wanted, she's my friend and I want her to be happy. but a bit of me feels so deflated. all around us are these big families of mum and dad, and 2, 3 or 4 children. and my family is just me and ds. and his special "only" friend will now have a brother or sister of his own and ds won't have that.

I do know that other people having children is completely irrelevant to my situation, and I am geniunely pleased for my friend, I just feel a bit gutted for me that I've lost what feels like my one bit of solidarity and understanding.

thanks for "listening", don't feel you need to post - just needed to put it in writing somewhere sympathetic!

<big sigh, pulls self together>

LilRedWG Mon 22-Jun-09 17:32:40

for you. Do not feel guilty for these natural feelings though.

EyePeam Mon 22-Jun-09 17:44:10

thanks LilRed

and blush for that who's I did mean whose of course

NightShoe Mon 22-Jun-09 21:19:01

As LilRed said, don't feel guilty it is natural to feel like this. But just remember that it takes all sorts to make a family.
Also, although your friend will have another child, it is not going to be much of a playmate for her DS so your DS is not going to lose his friend and so will still have that companionship. As an adult we don't usually seek out friendships with those exactly like ourselves because that would be abit boring.

My DD is an only and her best friend has a baby sister. I have been so happy to see my DD get to experience all that baby stuff, my friend was good enough to let my DD help with changing nappies and feeding, so in itself it has been a positive experience for DD, she has had an opportunity to experience things that she wouldn't get to otherwise.

squeaver Mon 22-Jun-09 21:20:47

You've still got solidarity and understanding on MN!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Mon 22-Jun-09 22:25:24

Yes. I'm sure you'll get lots of solidarity and understanding from other posters on this thread.

And for general chat with (mostly) mums of one, the one child family tea room never closes. Do drop in.

squilly Mon 22-Jun-09 22:30:00

I understand totally where you're coming from. It's a bit like hating people for getting pregnant when your ttc or just after you've had a mc. It's awful but it's how you feel. You can't escape disappointment, envy, frustration...they're all natural emotions in this situation.

I lost 3, had my dd then lost a 4th, so I can really relate. And I came from a huge family and always imagined having a small brood, so being a one child parent is still a bit tough to take at times. I try to remember the good bits, though. Like the fact that I don't have to juggle playdates, split my attention, referee fights, lose my spare bedroom or pay more for holidays.

I also have a little girl who is super confident, well loved and the centre of my world. I know that's not the exclusive domain of the one child family, but I like to think that I've been able to commit more to dd than I would have been able to if I'd had more. I may be kidding myself, but hey...would you rob a woman of a delusion like this if it stops her from stabbing out the eyes of every 2 child family in town?? Thought not

EyePeam Mon 22-Jun-09 22:42:23

aww thanks all. feels so much better just to know that there is solidarity and support here. it is horrible to feel jealous and crap about a friend's good news.

ljhooray Mon 22-Jun-09 22:59:44

Hi EyePeam, can really relate to your situation, I have no friends that either have or are planning to stick with 1. I often feel like a bit of an outsider, as they don't understand at all how I could be happy with just 1. I find my solice here on MN!

EyePeam Mon 22-Jun-09 23:06:21

outsider is about right ljhooray ... for me it's often the way in which people make assumptions about only children, even SIL said something the other day about a girl she'd been at school with who was whiney/precocious/precious/spoilt - the anecdote included the words "well of course she was an only child...". I know she didn't mean it personally, she wasn't thinking about ds (she wasn't thinking at all I guess) but obviously it registers with me - people will make assumptions about my ds based on his lack of siblings! ridiculous yet hurtful.

squilly Mon 22-Jun-09 23:18:16

My dd doesn't need to whine to get my attention, so she doesn't. She's spoilt in some ways, but never asks for stuff, doesn't want the latest this or designer that and considering she's 8 I'm apparently doing quite well in that department. She's also very appreciative of things that she has bought for her, so that puts the kaibosh on that particular myth.

A child can have siblings and be spoiled rotten. I've seen it with numerous kids in dd's class. And they whine and are antisocial and they don't share. Don't let people get you down. They're just showing their ignorance.

squeaver Tue 23-Jun-09 08:51:23

Yes it's strange how it's often just lobbed into a description of an unpleasant person.

I've seen it on MN loads of times, even about errant husbands: "he's having an affair, has run up loads of debts and never pays any attention to the children....of course, he's an only child..." I mean wtf??

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 23-Jun-09 21:41:15

<snort> at squeaver's uncannily plausible mock-post.

It was a mock post and not a verbatim quote, wasn't it? shock

ljhooray Wed 24-Jun-09 09:24:06

MadBad, feels like there's a start of a 'how many dictators, despots and warmongers are only children?' wink
It is crazy, but unfortunately, we adults tend to look for many reasons beyond what we believe is in our control to explain our unhappiness 'I was an only child, I was one of 7, I was the second child etc etc' It's our quickness to label and generalise that is the cause of much of the unhappiness in the world - give peace a chance (smell of incense wafts as I pull on my kaftan! Sorry got a bit carried away!)

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 24-Jun-09 11:29:24

ljhooray - Exactly. It seems to me, as I look around my friends and family, that the proportion of only children who have ishoos [amateur psychologist emoticon] is no greater than the proportion of people with siblings who have ishoos of their own. And even then, it is very much open to doubt whether those ishoos have anything to do with the presence or absence of siblings, rather than (for example) parenting styles or plain old personality types.

<<Scatters rose petals and dings her little bells together>>

<<Goes off to research whether Pol Pot had siblings>>

ljhooray Wed 24-Jun-09 13:46:41

MadBad - Hitler, Mugabe, Chairman Mao, Mussolini to name a few!

However Pol Pot and Ivan the Terrible I think may have been onlies shock

Sorry to decend into craziness but I think the generalisations and idiocy of ideal family size is so narrow minded.

Frenchfrie Wed 24-Jun-09 14:31:00


I am totally in the same boat as you. I am new here!! All my friends have 2 or 3 or are expecting number 2. Its hard.

I started a new job In January which is 2.5 days a week and I love it, because I love the work, people and I love the "me" time but on the other hand sometimes I think I would like another baby too (although prefer the older baby too!!!). Its the finances that would be a real issue for us and I DON'T want to get into debt because what sort of life are you leading then? worrying about every single penny, not being able to do stuff together as a family. And do remember you are a family even if there is only an "only" - HATE THAT Expression.

ljhooray Wed 24-Jun-09 14:34:49

FrenchFrie - check out a thread I started a little while ago so in total agreement!

daisy99divine Wed 24-Jun-09 16:04:37

Hi EyePeam I totally agree with squilly's post - the point is it is possible to have more than one emotion at a time - feel glad for your friend but hopping mad and jealous at the same time - however only the first emotion is allowed out in company wink that's why we love MN for the second

"if you haven't got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit by me" one of my fave all time quotes grin

Loving MadBad and ljhooray aside there...

<daisy sits lotus style on her tatami mat and says OHM>

EyePeam Wed 24-Jun-09 23:52:15

hello again all. so lovely to be in company that understands! daisy you're so right - I'd never do or say anything to let onto my friend that I've had even a flicker of jealousy about her situation. but it is so fab to be able to let it out elsewhere and then return to the friendship without stewing on things.

I am going off now to undertake some detailed research into / world leaders / Nobel Prize winners so that I can pronounce from a position of authority on the whole "only" nonsense. grin

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Thu 25-Jun-09 12:03:48

EyePeam - Please share your research once it's completed!

If ever you want to let off steam, please drop into the one child family tea room. It'd be lovely to see you - and everyone else - there.

daisy99divine Thu 25-Jun-09 14:27:55

OK,my research today tells me that....

Saddam Husseian had half siblings, but so does Barak Obama (he has 8!)

I also read a little nugget about Hitler which said "history might have been different had Hitler been accepted to the Vienna Art School" I think blaming the poor old admission bods at Art School for the annihalation of millions and WWII is a bit rich but heh - it's always the fault of something grin

ljhooray Thu 25-Jun-09 15:03:25

Apparently the Dalai Lama has 15 siblings! Perhaps I should now take back everything I have said and not have one child wink

daisy99divine Fri 26-Jun-09 14:13:34

yes ljhooray you must rush out and have 14 more straight away, otherwise, well, what hope for your DC! grin

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