It was tough as a kid seeing all of my friends with siblings, and even when they complained about having to share, a part of me envied them for having a partner in crime. I can’t speak for all only children but I was raised to be very self-reliant.
It wasn’t until I was older that I truly realized the special pros and cons of being an only child. From a young age, my parents forced me to make choices.
The most troubling issue though has been attachment.
My uncle's 40something wife has her mother who is in her late 70s.
There were no silly fights over mud pies in the backyard. We understand why you don't want to share food with us. We grew up eating what we wanted because our preferences were always the most important.
We wouldn't dream of taking your food when we know what we want. Moving, movies, trips to the beach and putting together furniture.
Having one kid means our parents have money left over for themselves.
One of my uncles is lazy, he works with my other uncle and often shows up at work late, generally gives a low performance. When my two uncles have an argument about this, they make up two days later but his wife can't understand why they made up when nothing changed.There will be no secret things to find out years down the line.Having to explain exactly why something is bothering us has prepared us for the dating world.All we got was an imaginary friend who your parents strongly advised against.When you get to our emotional core, we will open up to you.Our parents are cool because their entire 401K did not go towards my college tuition and breed contempt. We love the fact that you and your siblings fight and make up. We even like the idea of getting hundreds of Christmas cards.We'll never be angry when you invite us to a wedding. We never got to be cute and cuddly with our siblings. I bet there were even more depending on how many siblings your significant other had. I don't have a brother who is a sophomore at Duke and almost got kicked out because he flashed his Lit professor. Just think about how many birthdays, complicated names, and significant facts you had to memorize about your last girlfriend or boyfriend?From my mother and uncle's perspective, dating an only child is challenging because of the things I've listed above.Let's turn the table and look at the same relationships from my father and uncle's wife's perspective...sometimes they have to hang out with people they dislike, sometimes they need to lend some of their family money to their spouse's sibling, they think one of their spouse's siblings is mildly a bad example for their children, if it was a family friend you would just not make the kids hang out with them but when it's family they do have a relationship as the kids want to see their relatives or run into them at family gatherings.