Stop Stereotyping

Brenda Trujillo

When I introduce myself I tend to not mention that I am an only child. The main reason I leave this important fact out is because of the stereotypes put on me. According to society, an only child is lonely, bossy, and they have emotional problems. I refuse to believe that every single only child fits this description.

    Only children can be lonely but that all depends on their environment. A study done on school-aged kids at Ohio State University found that children with and without siblings have the same number of friends. One of the most common and believed stereotypes about only children is that they are extremely bossy. Only children tend not to be bossy because they want to be accepted, and they learn that being bossy can be an easy way of being excluded, so they do not portray this “bossy” trait around friends. Only children have the same emotional problem as everyone else. The Institute for Social and Economic conducted a survey where it actually concluded that only children are usually happier than children with siblings.

Instead of putting only children down with stereotypes, as a community, we should lift them up and let them be themselves.   

    I’m tired of people assuming that just because they believe in all of the cliché stereotypes they automatically know a person. It’s hard to change someone’s point of view when they already hold you to a set of standards, so that’s why I do not enjoy telling others that I do not have siblings. The best advice I have for other only children struggling with stereotypes is that you have to learn to accept them, but you do not have to confine to them, and the best way to get past them is to defy them. Show everyone that you are your own person.