Life, Personal

The one and only

I’m not sure if I’ve shared this or not but I’m an only child. There’s sp many studies on growing up and how having siblings or not affects you and the person you turn out to be.

Here are my pros and cons to being an only child …


Growing up as an only child definitely gave me the gift of imagination. Even though I saw a lot of family and friends, I did have more time on my own and could play for hours by myself imagining people and places. I have imaginary friends and would play dress up. This must have played a part in my love of writing and reading as imagination is key to both.

As a result, I’m not afraid of being alone, I actually quite like it. I am comfortable in my own company and don’t need people around me to amuse me. I know some people who are scared to be in the house alone, I relish it!

I think this has led to my independence, I’m quite self-reliant emotionally and don’t feel the need to lean on others that often. I probably try and sort out problems myself, analysing things in my own head more than talking to other people.

As an only child, I got 100% of the support / encouragement from my mum. I never had to fight for attention or love, there was only me to give it to. This also meant I was never compared to someone else or felt any pressure to live up to any siblings, I was able just to be me.

My mum and I are really close because of my upbringing especially losing my Dad when I was young and it’s nice to have her as my mum and friend.


I don’t know what it’s like to have a sibling but if I was as close to them as I am with my mum, it would be great to have someone else to share experiences with, to have their support and advice, especially if they were older and had been through the same things as me. I think I would have liked to have an older sister.

I am no good at sharing. Seriously, I’m really bad. I don’t like lending things to people and I like my things left alone 🙂 When I hear stories about how siblings mess each other’s things up, I can’t believe people let it happen. I’d go mad!

Being an only child, did make it a wrench to go away to university. It was hard being around so many people and sharing a kitchen and bathroom. The first few weeks were pretty tough but I got through it and had fun and I think it made me stronger.

Any other only children out there? How many siblings do you have? How did this affect you growing up?




32 thoughts on “The one and only”

  1. I’m an older sister of one, but I’m technically the fourth child as I’m really close with my cousins. There are only four of us now (my oldest cousin Joel died as a toddler) but I have always been brought up as part of a pack (karli and Jodie older, and then little bean is younger). You don’t get anything to yourself! Also, I saw Chesney hawkes last year at the eighties fest. I have weird taste in music and have always loved him but it was so cute. He got up on stage, did summer of 69 and then one and only, and then said “if everyone could say gi to my kids. They don’t believe I was ever famous!” it was the sweetest thing!

  2. I have four older siblings. I think it was (and is) pretty fun growing up with them. I think it was important that there are five of us, due to issues with my mother. It made us really close, and we’re able to count on each other with anything. Although I’m not too fond of holding the title of ‘baby…’ Hand-me-downs weren’t as fun ‘back then.’

  3. I have two older brothers, one younger brother and 2 younger sisters; (I was child #3). Being the first girl I got the new clothes which were then handed down to my sisters, so I was lucky in that respect. I never really had anything of my own, I had to share everything. However, I remember we always had to share any fruit (it was scarce when I was little), but I remember one time we all got an apple each – I thought I’d gone to heaven!

  4. Nice post! I have a younger bro and a younger sis, and I definitely think being the oldest has raelly impacted me. I’m extremely protective of both of them, and can be like a second mama! But I still know the ropes of how to sneak out, get a beer, etc. so I like to give them sisterly advice too!

  5. I am the baby of three. But, Sarah is my one and only. I always wanted a second one, but the timing was never right.I sometimes worry about that. But sometimes I don’t. I love my siblings, but sometimes I don’t like them. (No offense Steve, if you read this, you know what I mean). I find that I am closer to my sister’s by choice (as in good friends)than I am to my big sister. That’s just life, I guess.

    1. Yeah I can see you have phases where you are closer to one or argue with another, depends on what you’re going through in your life! Ah I knew she looked special 🙂

  6. Good thoughts. I have 3 siblings….but two are a lot older and we’re out of the house by the time I entered high school…I have a sister very very close in age, and it was both good and bad for both of us…a lot of comparing, and things like that …wish things were not like that…and really really wish I could separate from it and be absolutely at peace with me, a unique person on my own….my own dreams, desires, differences, etc…but its tough, and that is a flaw of both of ours.

  7. I have a younger sister, five years apart from me. It made me more responsible, I was taking care of her and teaching her how to ride a bike and such. It was fun to have a built in companion, though the age gap was a bit difficult when I was in my teens. We’re both in our 20s now and I consider her my best friend, though the bossy part of my does come out quite a bit. Being the oldest has its benefits.

      1. I wasn’t actually, I was 5 and I thought she was the best thing ever! I sorta treated her like a doll… She was born 10 days after my 5th birthday so I always called her my favorite birthday present! 🙂

  8. Well, here’s something we don’t have in common 🙂 Due to divorce and remarriages I’ve 4 siblings; 3 of which I am very close to not needing to specify step or half relations because to me we are siblings and there is no need to differntiate when it comes to them. My older step-brother and I are not close at all. I have one fully, biological sister; 1 half-brother and 2 step siblings. I am the “middle” child of all of us having an older brother and sister as well as a younger brother and sister. I did have an older sister who was born and passed away before I was born which would have made 4th in birth order…. Did I confuse you yet???? LOL. I think having multiple siblings has both positives as well as negatives; presuming just the same as being an only child 🙂

    1. There had to be something we didn’t! Haha does sound complicated but great you mostly all get on well. Definitely and we’ll never know anything different.

  9. I found you through Rach – love your blog! This is fascinating to me because I have only one child. And everything you say is exactly what I’ve heard from other onlys. Great explanation of the pros and cons…. makes me feel better about having only one 🙂

  10. Hmmm…I think I have the only child mentality, as I like to be a lot of times and am not too fond of sharing. But it’s probably just a me thing, I can’t take the idea that someone borrowed something and then broke it and doesn’t care that the did it. Grrr to those people. I think some only children get lonely. I had a friend who used to refer to her dog as her sister, and we were 23 at the time. Loneliness makes you do odd things…

  11. It’s funny, you can always tell who the “only children” are in my son’s 1st grade class. They are used to having their own way and not told “no” very often. Funny. It’s like they look at you and don’t understand. A lot of the single kids are at the top of the class, because their parents have time to work with them constantly as opposed to those w/split attention.

    HOWEVER, the 2nd siblings are at the top of the class as well, learning from their older brother/sister. So it works both ways.

    I had a nice mix. (or it confused me) I’m the single child between my mom and dad. They got divorced and I was the only until about 8 o 9. Then I got a step sister and step brother. At 10, I got a half-brother, followed by another half-brother and then half-sister! So I had family alternating.

    My girlfriend used to have knock-down drag out fights with her younger sister. I stayed the night once, and they were screaming at one another. Her sister used to steal her shirts and then stain them before Andrea even had a chance to wear…that she bought w/her own money from her first job! She got to the point, she went to the hardware store, installed her own new locking knob with key! Impressive! (until her sister figured out how to break the knob!)

    No thanks to that! Glad I had sibilings every other weekend.


    1. I think as long as you have support at home you’ll do well at school. I was told no though! Glad you got the best of both worlds! Your friends story would be my worst nightmare 🙂

  12. I’m so sorry about your dad… One of my oldest friends lost her dad when we were six and it has always been just her and her mum, but I think the fact that they were just two of them might also be one of the reason for the strong relationship between them (nowadays they sometimes are like sisters more than mother/daughter)
    I have two younger siblings; one sister that’s three years younger, and a brother that’s ten years younger… You’re right about the messing upp of your things 😉 But at the same time you have two people who know you inside out and understand your background completely because they have the same one (well if they grow up with you that is), and they will stand by you no matter what. But they aren’t afraid of stating their true opinions either, hehe.
    Funny enough, I think having siblings made me cherish being alone – there were very few times I was alone in the house and I loved it when it happened. Locked myself in my room sometimes though 😉

    1. Aw thanks Elin. It had made us closer I’m sure. Haha I can picture you running to your room and locking them out 🙂 Good to have their support though, sounds like a happy family!

  13. My two children both wish they were the only child. They argue, they fight, they hate each other every day (of course in between they sometimes love each other too). I guess we always want what we don’t have.

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