All kids have special friends, but only kids often form attachments to other children that are deeper, more lasting and complex than most childrens’ friendships with one another. Friends often take the place of siblings for only kids. Some only children make friends in nursery school that last forever. One only child met her best girlfriend in nursery school and they have been inseparable ever since. This only child fully believes (and she is probably right) that she could not be closer to this other girl if she were her sister. This is a friendship that flourished and survived because the parents of the only child went out of their way to make sure that it did. They planned sleepovers, outings, and trips with this girl and her family even when they would rather have done other things or when they were annoyed with the girl’s parents.
Establishing and maintaining friendships when children are young takes effort for parents of only children. The parent who has two or more children doesn’t have the same motivation as the parent of the only child. If the child with siblings has nothing to do, the parent can always say “go play with your brother or sister” and not feel any guilt about the child being alone. Parents of only children don’t have the luxury of knowing that their child will be occupied if a friend doesn’t show up. Some real planning is required here… However, once the network of friends is established it pays off. As kids get older they will keep the machine running on their own. You just have to be ready to do the initial schlepping.
Cole Porter was an only child prodigy whose life was filled with both privilege and adversity. He had all the money necessary to launch a career, but he also had a mother who was so controlling it’s a wonder he was ever able to establish his own identity. Perhaps that is why Cole had difficulty(…)
All kids have special friends, but only kids often form attachments to other children that are deeper, more lasting and complex than most childrens’ friendships with one another. Friends often take the place of siblings for only kids. Some only children make friends in nursery school that last forever. One only child met her best(…)
We went looking for one of the most influential only children of the 20th Century and decided that no one had done more to assure the survival of our country than Franklin Roosevelt. Without President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s contributions to the 20th Century, none of us might be here today. Our parents and grandparents might(…)
Cortes can be considered to represent the whole lot of conquistadors who can be considered responsible for wiping out whole civilizations. Cortes’ conquest of Mexico lead to the downfall of the Aztecs and the devastation of Mesoamerica. The story of Cortes’ arrival in the Aztec Empire and his dealings with Montezuma are almost legendary. Cortes(…)
This is the time of the year when parents of only children have to let go. Although we have written about this very emotional time in the only child household in the past, Amy Dickinson’s, Ask Amy syndicated advice column puts it in clear perspective. Dear Amy: My daughter recently left for college, and I am having a(…)
Frank Sinatra was an only child who often seemed fearless. He could be as abrasive as he was brilliant, and he wasn’t always happy. Because Frank was brought up in a neighborhood where his was the rare small family, being an only child was sometimes uncomfortable. But it defined Sinatra and gave him opportunities his(…)