10 Things You Learn About An Only Child When You Date One

by Bobby Box

Dating an only child can be harrowing. I'm allowed to say this because I'm an only child myself.

I'm an only child who chose to be an only child, actually. You see, when I was a kid, my folks were undecided about whether or not they wanted another kid. So, they considerately asked me – when I was just an infant at the time – how I'd feel about having a little brother or sister.

I wasn't enthused by the prospect at all. I emphatically told them that no, I didn't want a sibling. I further defended my position by saying I enjoyed the abundance of gifts I received at Christmas, as well as having ponies in our backyard on my birthday.

I mean, I was a kid. I wanted ponies and toys. The last thing I wanted was for somebody to take that away from me. So, needless to say, I remained an only child.

This predilection for gifts and material things is just one of the many qualities you will discover when you date an only child. And if you're an only child yourself, you know all of them are true, even if you'll never admit to it.

Here are some more qualities anybody who's ever dated an only child will know to be true.

1. We're used to having the bed to ourselves.

All my life, I've never had to sleep with another person stealing my sheets or complaining when I adjust my body in the middle of the night. I've never had to turn the volume down on the TV before I've been ready to hit the hay.

As such, it takes some time for me -- for us -- to get used to sharing a bed. Accommodating for another person in a bed that formerly housed just one person is a transition.

When this is the case, any and all touching should be minimal.

2. We're very close to our parents.

Some would say we're almost TOO close. But the first friendships we've ever built have been with our folks. If you consider the fact that we didn't have any brothers or sisters to hang around with after curfew or before breakfast, you'll realize our parents were the next best thing.

And over time, they became the best thing.

Only children tend to spend more time with their parents – understandably – therefore building uniquely close relationships that those with siblings might not have had the ability to possess. We have ridiculous nicknames for each other, as well as inside jokes and other things non-only children might find weird or bizarre.

Plus, when we reached legal drinking age, our parents became the best drinking buddies. Well, at least mine did.

3. We're loyal.

Since we didn't have any siblings to protect (or be protected by) in adolescence, I've found that most only children – myself included – are fiercely loyal. We see our closest friends as family because we seek that inimitable brotherly/sisterly bond.

So, we treat them accordingly: both the good and bad. We'll defend you like the most prosperous of lawyers, but we'll also get pissed and upset with you like scorned exes tend to.

Even my parents treat my best friends as family. When we were kids, they invited my friends to various amusement parks so that I didn't have to go on rides alone. In adulthood, they invited my friends over just so I would have people to hang out with.

Being best friends or in a relationship with an only child has a very healthy share of benefits.

4. We're stubborn AF.

Only children have never had to accommodate for other people: It's not like we had little brothers or sisters to wait on.

So, we can be a tad bit stubborn... perhaps even selfish.

But NEVER tell us that. That is, by far, one of the worst things you can possibly say to us.

5. We consider our pets as siblings.

I remember in kindergarten, my teacher asked the class if we had any siblings. I had two dogs at the time, so I said, "Yes, I have two: Baxter and Charlie."

Then, a bully by the name of Cathy felt the need to interrupt me and tell me that pets can't be family. I was devastated.

Regardless, however, I remain firm that my dogs are my siblings. As I've said before, we seek that unspeakable bond that one can only have with a blood-related sibling.

6. We've probably had an imaginary friend at some point.

I used to have a chalkboard wall in my room. Sometimes, I'd draw creatures on it, and I'd call them my imaginary friends.

Only children may do this because they tend to be creative as a result of having no siblings to fight and/or play with.

So, we improvise and create our own.

7. We have interesting hobbies.

My parents tried getting me into everything: karate, hockey, soccer, you name it. As it turns out, I like to draw.

Upon seeing this proclivity, my parents had me attend various art schools and classes in order to work on my craft. Since there is more money available to those with fewer (or no) siblings, our parents are able to spend more money on our interests and hobbies.

8. We like to be left alone.

"Alone time" was yet another thing we were used to having growing up. So, sometimes, we want to go back to those days.

So, I'm sorry, but there are some days when I just want everybody around me to (pardon my French) fuck right off. My best advice for you would be to do just that.

If you don't do so when you're asked, you're in for a whole lot of hurt (to put it lightly).

9. We don't like to share.

We were never expected to share. So, we might be reluctant to do so even when we're in a relationship.

We're not being rude or selfish; it's just how we were raised.

This quality does have an upside, though: We will NEVER steal food off your plate. We grew up eating whatever we wanted because we were all our parents had to consider. We would hate it if someone did it to us, so we're courteous enough to never do it to you.

We will come around to the idea of giving you a spoonful of our ice cream eventually, but it takes some coercing.

10. We like to get our own way.

When you argue with us, do so strategically. We don't take well to the word “no.”

Choose your words wisely. Be complimentary when you're negotiating with us.

Build a complimentary sandwich: give us a compliment, tell us the thing you need to say that you know we won't like and then, top that baby off with yet another compliment.