Pros and Cons to Having a Single Child

According to, families in America have an average of 1.93 children. If you break that down, it means most families have at least 2 children.

Many couples think 2 children are perfect. Some families say that three or more is the ideal. They enjoy the companionship between their kids and a house full of bustling young ones can keep depression at bay.

But there are also those who prefer to have one child. Parents of an only child may enjoy a more affordable, low maintenance lifestyle.

There are pros and cons to having an only child. This article will explore the advantages and disadvantages, so you can decide if this is the route you and your partner should take.

Pros to Having a Single Child

Here are some advantages to having an only child.

More Focused Support

When parents have an only child, there are no other children vying for their attention. They can focus on the child to support him or her in all their endeavors.

More Time for Bonding

Parents and only children have plenty of opportunities to get close and bond.

Only Children are More Independent Than Their Peers

A child that grows up without siblings becomes more independent. As compared to their peers, they are better prepared to take on tasks without the help of others,

Better Able to Make Friends

Single children don’t have the companionship of their siblings, so they are more motivated to make friends outside of home.

Enjoys Solo Activities

While a single child may want to make friends, they will also be satisfied playing on their own. They may be happy painting, making a puzzle or playing an instrument.

More Mature Than Their Friends

Because single children are close to their parents, they tend to be more mature. They are exposed to the adult world early in life and this is something they carry with them as they develop.

Cons to Having a Single Child

Now here are some drawbacks of having a single child.

Tendency to Be Spoiled

Single children are brought up never having to share and they get used to being the center of their parent’s attention. They often have a sense of entitlement as compared to children with siblings.  

Fear of Not Living Up to Parental Expectations

All children have a desire to please their parents. For a single child, making their parents happy in that sense falls solely on their shoulders. This can lead to immense stress and a fear of failure.

Sole Responsibility of Looking After Parents

The burden of being an only child can carry on as children get older. It will be entirely up to them to care for their parents as they advance into their twilight years.

Greater Chance of Being Rebellious

Single children are very close to their parents. While the bond is beneficial in some cases, it can also cause children to rebel. They may begin to resent the relationship and lash out in other ways.

Having a single child comes with its shares of pros and cons. While parents benefit financially, there may be repercussions that take a toll on the child’s mental well-being. What’s your ideal number when it comes to making a family?