Janel: 18 year old only

by on September 22, 2011

in Guest Onlies

Being an only
I am an only child who lives with my two parents. Since dad was from a family of ten children and mom was one of eight children, sharing possessions as children translated in such charity of today.
On the other hand, I was raised as an only child who did not share much with them because I received all of their attention and resources. Therefore, I see myself as a little adult because my mom and I always talked about the news, politics, and good books. She also took me on field trips to different places within the tri-State area; in fact, my dad always bought me expensive gifts at times and tried to teach me life lessons that were often more humorous than serious. Being surrounded by just my two parents all my life was highly influential, yet sometimes it seemed overbearing.
What I need as an only – This poem I read on onychild.org.uk reflects the challenge I have as the sole offspring of two parents striving to get parenting right. I never rebelled against them, but I feel like I my personality traits are similar to their own. Mom can be slightly reclusive, and I am too; my dad is a little lazy at home, and I am very lazy with chores at times. Nonetheless, I try to maintain a private side to myself that no one will know about. In addition, I get a little nervous if people ask me, “How many brothers and sisters do you have?” because my birth order has many negative connotations that ignore its complexity. Otherwise, my upbringing, and crucial events in my life, allowed me to focus on issues of greater importance.
What I enjoyed
I had time to be a kid as a young girl, but I was exposed to the adult world pretty early. My mother always carried me along when she went on interesting trips, and I loved to read from a very young age. Teachers and other authority figures always said I acted mature for my age. Perhaps living with two adults for all my childhood made me more apt to getting along with older individuals instead of peers. In college, it’s been easier to make friends because everyone’s an adult; my high school classmates claimed I was “different”.
And now
Even though I commute to college, my parents get really concerned about me staying there too late at night. Sometimes it feels as if my social life is a little limited because I rush home so that they’re not always scared. I’m becoming more independent, but I can sense their uncomfortable sentiments about that.

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