The BBC has an article on 'Only children', named "The One and Only" (is one enough?), or 'Little Emperors': this term was given to those children born in China where they had a 'policy' of having only one child per family. Personality Reasearch says, "Stereotypes of Only Children. The only child is automatically stigmatized. When asked to describe personality characteristics of an only child, many people will respond negatively, indicating the presupposition that 'only children' are spoiled brats. In China, couples are encouraged to have only one child in order to help curb population growth. These children, or "little emperors," as they have been called, are generally seen as spoiled monsters. However, research conducted by Falbo (Brophy, 1989), a psychologist known for work in the area of birth order, indicates otherwise. Falbo found that Chinese only children fared no worse in personality or achievement than their counterparts with siblings. However, only children are also often seen as high-achieving, motivated, and successful (Brophy, 1989, p.56)."....and there certainly seems to be numerous famous 'only children'.
The websites with advice, chat, help etc are many: ....org....com...that tell us the reasons for having only one are many - women choosing to have children later, the one child option as a lifestyle choice, marriage breakdown. May be now is the time to get beyond the stereotyped image of the spoilt brat and become curious about the actual experience of growing up as the ‘only child'.
...any 'onlys' out there reading this who care to comment? - or anyone agree that they seem spoilt or maybe that we should be worried by "Beanpole families"?... those with fewer [one] children and multiple generations of older people - are leading to profound social changes, the Office for National Statistics said. Fewer brothers and sisters in one generation leads to fewer aunts and uncles in the next...and longer, thinner patterns of family relationships (Guardian 30.1.03).