Katie Luther Posts



By Anonymous

One blessing.

Children are a gift from God; my family has been blessed with one child. That’s right, only one. One healthy little girl who made me a Mommy at the age of 33. This little girl has given my family much joy. My heart swelled with love as she grew inside my womb and the day she was born hardly feels like seven years ago. If God blesses my family with another child, our hearts will grow in ways I cannot imagine. There are joys and challenges with having children; I think different experiences are intensified depending on how many kids you have.

The time I spend with my daughter is ours. Togetherness. While I do not long for more children, my daughter gets lonely. She has asked for a baby, drew pictures of me being pregnant, and even had an imaginary sibling for awhile. She wants a sister, a playmate, or maybe someone to boss around. Her reasons for wanting a sibling could be one of many, my response to her request is always the same: God wants us to take care of only YOU right now.

I have one amazing child — she’s sensitive, caring, confident, intelligent, independent, creative, the list could go on and on. Teachers have commented on her determination and imagination. I don’t think these qualities are necessarily a direct result of being an only child, but they are definitely traits which only children share. Like most parents, I play games with my child, help her with schoolwork, and give her love and attention. Time with my daughter is undivided, she doesn’t have to struggle to be heard and knows that her opinion matters. My job as a parent is not to entertain her constantly; she has learned to be more self-reliant. In her free time, she typically plays with her miniature figurines, Barbie® dolls, or Legos® often by herself. She loves to draw pictures and read books too. This independent playtime fosters her imagination and she will benefit from mastering this skill early in life.

Without having siblings to play and interact with, an only child can be socially awkward and has to work at making friends with her peers. Taking the initiative to make friends is a valuable skill that is developed earlier by only children out of necessity. They compensate for being introverted or extroverted more so than children with siblings. My daughter is not an exception to this. She is an extrovert who longs for the attention of other children and recharges by being around them. It’s heartbreaking for any mother to hear your child being told to “go away” at a park, or when she comes home from school saying the other kids are mean to her. My heart aches when this happens. People generally desire to be liked, and that doubly applies to an only child because they do not automatically have siblings as friends.

Sharing is an important skill when it comes to interacting with others. Everyone shares at some point in their lives and most people learn to share with their siblings during childhood. Not having to share your toys or, more importantly, your Mommy and Daddy time is a bonus for an only child. This is one of the hardest lessons that a “first” child has to learn when a new sibling joins the family. I think this may be more difficult for an only child because the frequency of sharing is often much less. It does not mean that an only child is more selfish. As Sir Mick Jagger said, “You can’t always get what you want.” That’s a motto we follow and say frequently in our household. Actually, we sing it…together. It softens the sting of a “no” and yet our child knows that our answer is firm.

The most rewarding part of having an only child is the bond between mother and child. Children with siblings talk to each other more than their parents and the siblings often become the child’s role models. Only children have a close relationship with their parents and they become the child’s primary role models, resulting in the child learning more advanced behavior and thought processes for their age by mimicking their parents. Not only are these skills bound to help better equip the child for handling life’s challenges, the bond between parent and child is sensational. My husband and I have been blessed with one child and our family is complete.

Photo Credit to Duck Lover. Creative Commons license.

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