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One and Only: The Freedom of Having an Only Child, and the Joy of Being One

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One and Only: The Freedom of Having an Only Child, and the Joy of Being One Cover

ISBN13: 9781451626957
ISBN10: 1451626959
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Debunking the myth that only children are selfish, maladjusted “little emperors,” a prominent journalist makes a funny, tough-minded, and honest case for being and having an only child.

Lauren Sandler is an only child with an only child of her own, who found that discussing the choice to stop at one kid was loaded with anxiety, doubt, misinformation, and judgment. After investigating what only children really are like and whether stopping at one child is an answer to reconciling motherhood and modernity, she learned a lot about herself—and a lot about our culture’s assumptions.

In this heartfelt work, Sandler demystifies the perceived problems of the only child and legitimizes a conversation about the larger societal costs of having more than one. We ask when people are having kids—never a kid, never one child at a time. If parents no longer felt they had to have second children to keep from royally screwing up their first, would the majority of them still do it? And, if the literature tells us—in hundreds of studies—that a child isn’t better off with a sibling, and it’s not something parents truly want for themselves, then whom is this choice serving?

One and Only examines these questions, exploring what the rise of the single-child family means for our economies, our environment, and our freedom. Sandler considers hundreds of studies and interviews, traveling around the world to discover that only children are just fine, their parents often happier, and our planet is better off for them.

Sandler’s controversial revelations will probably draw rebukes from the majority of parents who believe that having several children is the healthiest model for all members of a family. Others will claim that she’s quite possibly cracked the code of happiness, demonstrating that having just one may be the way to resolve our countless issues with adulthood in our overtaxed age.

Review:

"Journalist Sandler (Righteous: Dispatches from the Evangelical Youth Movement), an only child and the mother of an only child, is struggling with the decision of whether to have a second baby. Though she says this is not a memoir, her personal story is woven throughout, beginning with her mother's decision to have one child and ending with the author's apparent decision not to have a second child (though tears flow when her husband considers a vasectomy). The focus of the book, however, is on dissecting the research surrounding the myth of the lonely, selfish, maladjusted only child. Sandler reports that only children are not lonelier, that they have higher levels of aspiration, motivation, and success, and that even when their parents' divorce, they may well become better adjusted than kids with siblings. While she finds that negative stereotypes and social stigmas prevail (including the notion that moms with only children are selfish), Sandler reveals that 'onlies' benefit from their parents' single-minded support, both financially and emotionally. But the point is to 'live the life you want,' making choices based on individual desires and what is best for one's particular family. Onlies, parents of onlies, and readers still on the fence will find the book illuminating and affirming. Agent: Elyse Cheney, Elyse Cheney Literary Associates. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

A humorous, tough-minded, and honest case for being and having an only child .

Journalist Lauren Sandler is an only child and the mother of one. After investigating what only children are really like and whether stopping at one child is an answer to reconciling motherhood and modernity, she learned a lot about herself—and a lot about our culture’s assumptions. She brings a passion and a laser-sharp intelligence to the subject that cuts through the anxiety, doubt, misinformation, and judgment about what it means to be an only child and what it means to have one. In this heartfelt work, Sandler legitimizes a conversation about the larger societal costs of having more than one. If parents no longer felt they had to have second children to keep from royally screwing up their first, would the majority of them still do it? And if the literature tells us that a child isn’t better off with a sibling than without one, and it’s not something parents truly want for themselves, then whom is this choice serving? One and Only examines these questions, exploring what the rise of the single-child family means for our economies, our environment, and our freedom. Through this journey, Sandler has quite possibly cracked the code of happiness, demonstrating that having just one may be the way to resolve our countless struggles with adulthood in the modern age.

About the Author

Lauren Sandler has written on cultural politics, religion, and inequality for Time, The Atlantic, Slate, and The New York Times. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

writermala, August 15, 2013 (view all comments by writermala)
As the mother of a single child I'm to this day trying to justify to myself that I did not somehow deprive my child of all kinds of benefits a sibling would have provided. Thus, it was with great eagerness that I read this book. Lauren Sandler does not defend her decision to have just one child by relating facts and figures that only support this position; rather she comments on both sides of this eternal debate. What is important is that at the end of the book I feel my 35 year angst vanishing and believing that my decision was both personally and socially responsible. Thank you Lauren! This book would make an excellent gift for single children, their parents, grandparents, teachers...
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781451626957
Author:
Sandler, Lauren
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Subject:
Child Care
Subject:
Sociology - General
Subject:
General Social Science
Subject:
Child Care and Parenting-General
Subject:
Sociology - Marriage & Family
Subject:
Lauren Sandler, Righteous, One and Only, only child, only children, parents, siblings, childhood development, single child family, environment, economy, motherhood, kid, adulthood, happiness, well-adjusted, non-fiction
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20130631
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
224
Dimensions:
8.38 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Child Care and Parenting » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General Medicine
History and Social Science » Sociology » Children and Family
History and Social Science » Sociology » General
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

One and Only: The Freedom of Having an Only Child, and the Joy of Being One New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$24.99 In Stock
Product details 224 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9781451626957 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Journalist Sandler (Righteous: Dispatches from the Evangelical Youth Movement), an only child and the mother of an only child, is struggling with the decision of whether to have a second baby. Though she says this is not a memoir, her personal story is woven throughout, beginning with her mother's decision to have one child and ending with the author's apparent decision not to have a second child (though tears flow when her husband considers a vasectomy). The focus of the book, however, is on dissecting the research surrounding the myth of the lonely, selfish, maladjusted only child. Sandler reports that only children are not lonelier, that they have higher levels of aspiration, motivation, and success, and that even when their parents' divorce, they may well become better adjusted than kids with siblings. While she finds that negative stereotypes and social stigmas prevail (including the notion that moms with only children are selfish), Sandler reveals that 'onlies' benefit from their parents' single-minded support, both financially and emotionally. But the point is to 'live the life you want,' making choices based on individual desires and what is best for one's particular family. Onlies, parents of onlies, and readers still on the fence will find the book illuminating and affirming. Agent: Elyse Cheney, Elyse Cheney Literary Associates. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , A humorous, tough-minded, and honest case for being and having an only child .

Journalist Lauren Sandler is an only child and the mother of one. After investigating what only children are really like and whether stopping at one child is an answer to reconciling motherhood and modernity, she learned a lot about herself—and a lot about our culture’s assumptions. She brings a passion and a laser-sharp intelligence to the subject that cuts through the anxiety, doubt, misinformation, and judgment about what it means to be an only child and what it means to have one. In this heartfelt work, Sandler legitimizes a conversation about the larger societal costs of having more than one. If parents no longer felt they had to have second children to keep from royally screwing up their first, would the majority of them still do it? And if the literature tells us that a child isn’t better off with a sibling than without one, and it’s not something parents truly want for themselves, then whom is this choice serving? One and Only examines these questions, exploring what the rise of the single-child family means for our economies, our environment, and our freedom. Through this journey, Sandler has quite possibly cracked the code of happiness, demonstrating that having just one may be the way to resolve our countless struggles with adulthood in the modern age.

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