September 2013

Bernice responds to Louise Watt – Beijing correspondent

 Louise Watt (correspondent in Beijing) wrote to me in a personal correspondence about this research and asked me for my response: Recently Australian researchers have explored the psychological impact of China’s one-child policy and part of that is the impact of being an only child. This was published by Science magazine in January 2013. Loiuse’s email: “They found that people born as a result of China’s one-child policy are less trusting, less competitive and more risk-averse than people born before the policy was implemented. The researchers recruited approx. 400 Beijing residents who had been born either before (in 1975 or 1978) or after (in 1980 or 1983) the implementation of the policy. They used a series of economic games, in which participants had to make economic decisions to measure their trust, risk-taking and willingness to compete. They also used personality surveys to determine that only children (as a result of [...]

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A perspective from 21st Century- 14 year old

 My four issues Hi Bernice I’m an only child (14 yrs old) and have been looking around the web for a site such as yours because I’m trying to list the problems that being an only child can cause. [Issue 1] I’ve accepted that my parents are too old to have another child, but it is something I’ve always wanted regardless. I would substitute for a dog, but the ‘rents don’t want one. [Issue 2] My best-friend (a fellow only) and I have what one could only call a sister bond, sometimes because I always take care of her, give her a shoulder to cry on. [Issue 3] I have a very tenuous relationship with my parents, and I suspect because of having 100% attention 24/7, I’ve found my own ways to rebel against them by sometimes being difficult and lazy. Because there’s no example for either my parents or myself to follow, I don’t really know how to talk [...]

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Only child of the 80′s

Here is another post of an only child, Lucy, describes growing up in the 80′s and some of the good and bad aspects of that experience. The significance of ageing parents is notable, especially as the relationship has at times been difficult, perhaps in part because of the older nature of the parents. I think this is a case of over-protective parenting. Whilst over-protective parenting may be seen as love it can also be detrimental to the separation process of a child from their parent. This shows itself in Lucy’s guilty feelings and difficulties in feeling okay about saying no to the pressure of being continually in contact and the sense of not being seen as an adult/grown-up either by them or by herself. Still there are lots of good things too – so have a read! Lucy: I’m a nearly 40 something only child which has had some good [...]

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