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Only children and ‘having it all’

Jun 18, 2013

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Lauren Sandler’s “One and Only: The Freedom of Having an Only Child, and the Joy of Being One” discusses what Sandler sees as the myth of “only child syndrome.”

Can you tell if someone is an only child? Are you a parent who had a second child for the sake of your firstborn? In Lauren Sandler’s new book, “One and Only: The Freedom of Having an Only Child, and the Joy of Being One,” Sandler set out to prove that “only child syndrome” is a myth and such stereotypes don’t exist. As an only child and mother of one child herself, she wondered why society frowned upon having only one child.

Her new book cites international studies showing only children are not lonely and going to school provides sufficient companionship and social skills. Sandler argues that societal views need to shift. With a struggling economy, less financial stability, and more women with established careers, the American ideal of two children and a dog is not the happiness formula. Rather, with just one child and therefore fewer costs, Sandler believes parents really can “have it all.”

Is she right? What’s your experience as an only child? Are you a parent with only one child? What are your considerations about having more children?

Guest:

Lauren Sandler, author of “One and Only: The Freedom of Having an Only Child, and the Joy of Being One;” reported and offered commentary for Time, The New York Times, and Slate.

 

 Only children and ‘having it all’  photo

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