Procreation is the basic instinct of the whole of the animal kingdom including humans, who, once they are married and a certain amount of time has passed by, feel the uncontrollable urge to have children. Undeniable though this desire is, some stop at one child whereas others have as many as a dozen. The latter type of parent is hard to understand as the need to have more children when one already has perfection makes no sense. Having only one child is the right decision in the modern world both in terms of the parents and the child not to mention the society as a whole.
Modern parents get married much later in the modern world: they graduate from university, get a job, rise in the ranks so as to be able to earn better and only then put down roots. The idea of bringing a new life into the world remains on the back burner for another couple of years while couples enjoy their new life together. The child, when he arrives, is born to mature parents with active professional lives, hobbies and interests and an active social life, all of which they want their child to enjoy as well. This being the case, it doesn’t make financial or practical sense to divide the pie among numerous mouths; one child can enjoy far more financial advantages. He can get the best possible education and get a much better start in life. From the parents’ point of view, taking maternity and paternity leave once in a life time is more than enough; people in the modern world have lives to get back to. There is the concern that the only child will have to carry the parents’ responsibility alone in old age but this is a very outdated view. Modern families save for retirement, have pension funds or prefer sheltered accommodation in old age; they neither expect nor want their children to wait on them hand and feet. To misquote Marx, “To each according to his means” holds very true for modern families be they well to do or not.
The only child is mistakenly assumed to be a lonely, maladjusted and thoroughly selfish sociopath but this is very far from being true as his social life rivals his parents’: he goes to the play center and then to kindergarten from the word go acquiring a social circle with whom he interacts on a daily basis learning social skills his parents acquired much later in life. He is soon being ferried to music lessons, swimming practice, basketball and the like, which makes coming back to a bed room he shares with no one a great pleasure. His toys and other belongings are just where he left them; nothing has been taken or broken and never will be. Lonely summer holidays are an alien concept in the modern world where kids go to camp or summer school returning home healthy but exhausted. The only child can look forward to the best education money can buy and therefore, the best possible start in life. He is also the only heir and when death finally catches up with his parents: the family home and the bank account go to him without being split three or four ways. In short, people don’t live in their own little bubbles and one’s social circle more than makes up for siblings.
To cut a long story short, an only child makes financial, practical and emotional sense. It also gives parents an opportunity to enjoy their own lives instead of working their fingers to the bone trying to raise a little troupe of children. Masochism of this kind requires a trip to a therapist. People should do themselves and their child a favor by not saddling him with a sibling