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how can I come to terms with having an only child?

(15 Posts)
littleweed Sun 03-Apr-05 07:39:30

I know compared to some how lucky we are to ahve our beautiful DS. at 40 though and in the middle of my second MC in 6 months I realise I have to face up to the fact that my eggs may well be past their sell by date and number 2 may never arrive. I can't imagine DS being an only child and am finding it really difficult to come to terms with. I know in the grand scheme of things it's not the end of the world but would be grateful if there any others of you out there who've been in a similar position to give me advice.

NotQuiteCockney Sun 03-Apr-05 07:42:52

If you're worried about him being lonely etc, you can try to ensure there are other kids around?

I'd love to have a huge family, but I'm finding two kids reasonably hard, and would rather not have any more MC or C-sections (had one of each per DS), so I'm happy to regularly borrow other people's kids, instead. As DS1 gets bigger (he's 3.5 now) I expect I will borrow other people's kids for a weekend or whatever.

welshmum Sun 03-Apr-05 07:48:14

It might not be time to give up yet littleweed - you never now what's around the corner. I had given up hope of another one after an m/c and fertility treatment, we even started counselling about how to cope with the fact we'd only have one. Then I got pg aged 41.......
Also if you're getting pregnant so quickly at your age to my mind it sounds quite hopefuly- although I know the m/cs are bloody awful.
I hope things work out for you.

saadia Sun 03-Apr-05 08:28:45

I can understand why you're sad. My cousin, now a mother of two, was an only child and although she spent school holidays etc with my siblings and I, I do think she was also lonely, BUT she has a wonderful personality - very warm, open, always wanting to share her things, very compassionate etc - and has lots of good friends and is a superb mother. Other friends who are only children have told me that they are very independent and self-reliant, unlike myself, who always seeks approval. One thing I have come to realise is that, in child-rearing generally, there really is no right way, and no right or wrong family set-up. There are simply choices, and every choice you make comes with a price.

You can make the most of having one child, perhaps your ds will end up being closer to you if he is the only one, he might have more confidence in himself. Of course he might feel he is missing out by having no siblings but children are very resilient and adaptive and there is no reason why he can't have a very happy and fulfilling childhood. It is to some extent our experiences and how we deal with them that make us what we are.

But welshmum is right - it may not be too late - but either way I suppose it's just a case of having to accept that some things are out of our control. I hope I haven't made you feel worse.

emmatom Sun 03-Apr-05 10:49:04

Is it any comfort to think that you will probably worry more about it than your child? After all your child will not know any different.

I don't know how old he is, but when he's at school, if not already, he will have other children there for company, yet still come home to be the sole attention grabber from you. What luxury for him!!

During holidays you can meet with other mums and kids, again, he will have playmates there.

You will probably create a very very close bond as he will have all your attention and will develop the ability to find his own interests and not be swayed by those of a sibling.

I have 3 siblings but they are so much older than me, they had left home by the time I was 8 so I feel like an only child as I have little memory of things before this age.

I knew no different and had all the advantages of being the sole focus of my parents.

I have two children and I needed more than one for my sake, broodiness and all that, but for the child's sake I really don't feel it's that much of a problem.

Is any of that a comfort?

DissLocated Sun 03-Apr-05 11:07:46

I don't know if this is any help, but I'm an only child and I can honestly say it has never bothered me. What you don't have, you don't miss and when I was growing up I was always thankful I didn't have siblings to fight with. I enjoyed the peace of our house and have always been comfortable with my own company and able to amuse myself.

I did have lots of cousins I met with every weekend and on the estate I grew up on I had lots of friends my own age and we would frequently stay over at each others houses.

The only problems I've had is as I've got older. I now live about 250 miles away from Mum and Dad and they have never quite forgiven me for that, especially now that I have dd.

bonym Sun 03-Apr-05 13:05:43

littleweed - even if you have another child there is no guarantee that the two of them will get on. I have a younger brother and we have never been close - we have nothing in common apart from family, and see each other very little. I don't feel that I have benefitted in any way from having a sibling. Also, my dh is one of 4 boys and has very little contact with any of his brothers (again - he is very different from the rest of them and finds it hard to find common ground).

My dd1 will be 7 next month and we have only now given her a sister (2 weeks ago). Up to now she doesn't seem to have been adversely affected by being an only child - she is very sociable and has lots of friends, and is also very independent, bright, secure and loving. I think the fact that an only child gets all their parents' attention can be a positive thing and as long as you ensure that your ds has lots of contact with other children (whether at nursery, playgroup or with or other friends' children) he should not grow up lonely.

Tortington Sun 03-Apr-05 21:11:50

i'm an only child - my mum always made sure i had friends in the house to play with. i look back and realise that if ever i wanted something i was bought it, i got trips abroad - when no one else i knew got trips abroad.

as an adult i cant tell you how relieved i feel that i never had to compete for attention, that i never even contemplated who my mum loved the most, that i dont have to sit by whilst any siblings get treated better or worse than me, i had no sibling fights etc etc. i know a lot of people have good adult sibling relatinships. however i dont really know any personally - my mum and uncle do not talk. my dh although on speaking terms with - doesnt ever really converse with his brothers - its like - they are there - he loves them but he never bothers with them.

i think i got a good deal as a kid

tigi Sun 03-Apr-05 21:28:53

i have a five year gap between my first and second children, and looking back, we had so much relaxed easy time together, and were so close and content, wheras everything is so manic and rushed now. We had lovely days out, and he was a really lovely child. I worry now that I don't have so much time for him, so please just enjoy the time you have while he is young, and don't think about what could be, it's not all it's cracked up to be.

darlingbud Sun 03-Apr-05 21:30:48

I'm sorry to hear about this littleweed. Is it important that the child is your own? I know for some people it is but there are other children out there who need loving stable families. Would you consider giving a home to one of them?

posyhairdresser Sun 03-Apr-05 21:35:28

Are you upset for yourself or for ds or both?

bibiboo Mon 04-Apr-05 15:21:53

Can I just say, your eggs may still be prime baby-making candidates yet, don't put yourself over the hill at 40!
Your ds may have a brother/sister if he's really lucky, but at the very worst, he's got parents who love him - and tbh, he can't miss what he's never had. If that's the worst case scenario, he's still a very lucky boy indeed.
Keep trying, if it happens, it happens, but please don't beat yourself up over it if it doesn't. It's down to nature, which is odd and uncontrollable, cruel and kind.
Good luck

bubbly1973 Mon 04-Apr-05 22:53:24

im so sorry that you are in the middle of a m/c

cant give any better advice than what the others have said...but...

you say you are in the middle of a second m/c....have the doctors looked into why you keep having m/c's? i know usually they wont look into it until three m/c but given your age, perhaps they will look into it...

...dont do this without medical help and advice, but from what i see, many doctors seem to be giving aspirin to women to help there wombs thicken so that it stops the miscarriages...but i must stress, that its something you or anyone reading this should ask there doctors about first!!

i really really hope you get pregnant very soon and have a healthy baby...but if you dont, when ever you feel down, just remember that you have one precious (sp?) baby, and many cant have any
(which im sure you know anyway)

take care

jenkel Mon 04-Apr-05 23:43:59

I hope you dont think that I am insensitive but I have a opposite problem to you.

Firstly I was an only child and had a wonderful childhood, I wasnt spoilt at all and mum often says the house was full of children. She came from a large family and wanted lots of kids, but she had quite severe health problems after having me so it was never to be. DH's sister is 13 years younger than him, so he was a only child for most of his childhood too.

We had a really tough time getting pregnant with dd1, 3 lots of IVF and one eptopic pregnancy, so were so grateful to have one healthy daughter and were not expecting any others. Didnt use any contraception and guess what, 8 months later DD2 arrived.

Anyway, thats beside the point, I can honestly say that I had a wonderful childhood, may be a bit harder work for the parents, and probably not what you imagined your life would be like, but please dont worry.

As crazy as it seems, I was really worried when our suprise came along, I had conditioned myself to only expecting one child, how on earth would I love 2 children, I just couldnt see how I could do it, especially as I never had to share my parens, but its all worked out well in the end and I'm sure it will for you too,

littleweed Tue 05-Apr-05 18:39:37

thnaks for all the messages. i'm going to ask if they can start testing to see why the last 2pg have failed when I go in for this next scan on friday. I Know how lucky I am to ahve my darling DS, I guess because he happened so easily I thought it would always be like that. I'm very impatient adn want things yesterday adn am used (more or less) to my body doing what i want so the lack of control is one of teh worse aspects. Am trying not to write myself or my eggs off just yet. I always thought MCs werre full of drama, blood etc like a bad episode of holby city & I think teh waiting around adn no outward signs just make it worse. thnaks everyone

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