Click here for shortcuts to regional language blogs and city-specific events.
Complete your families!!
"Oh! You poor darling!You must be feeling quite lonely!If you feel bored,do come over to our room and you can play and chat with my kids"
These words echoed like thunder and I felt abashed as my son looked upto me with a knowing look.Thus started the first day of our trip which we had excitedly planned and looked forward to.Why did the kind lady have to make that remark and make us feel less of a family?The trip was made with the intention of the three of us taking a long break,relaxing,enjoying each other's company.My son had excitedly made plans with his dad regarding all the activities he was planning and all the fun that he was going to have.So the trip was planned with three of us,we had not kept a vacuum in place of a sibling.So why do people remark as such?
While people are not cruel,their words often are.A childless couple is treated with more tact that the parents of single kid.A constant reminder that "YOUR FAMILY IS INCOMPLETE"resounds in the air everytime a family meets them .Another good friend once pointed out for an hour about the shortcomings of a single child.....How he is going to be always lonely in a group,how other kids will always side with their siblings and make him the odd one out,how he shall not have anyone to share his stories and anecdotes with,how lonely he shall be when the parents will pass away.I spent the rest of the day bitterly crying on my pillow scared and worried about the havoc future will play on my child.
So what completes a family ? 4 generations back,you needed at least a dozen kids for completion,three generations back ,it dropped to 4-5 kids,then came "Hum do Hamare do"generation which is the most smug and the smartest parent generation till this date.They never fail to showcase their good luck and smartness in giving their child a sibling and how it benefits a child's emotional and moral support system. Is a family complete if one has three kids instead of two?two boys instead of a boy and a girl?two girls instead of a boy and a girl?twins?By the laws of the previous generations ,even their families are incomplete as their kids will not have all the necessary paternal and maternal uncles and aunts.
But parents of single kids can't point it out as they have made the grave error in parenting only one child......for reasons best known to them.
A family consists of people who love ,understand and respect each other,give time and are there for each other.Lets stop this preaching attitude towards a single child ,let him not feel lonely(he doesn't usually unless people around him remind him/her),stop taking the parents on a guilt trip and not letting them enjoy their time with their child.
The woman you accuse of being selfish may have prayed for endless days to have a second child but may be unsuccessful,A couple may be struggling to make their ends meet and may not be able to afford another child,another family maybe reeling under health issues,a special child maybe taking all the time of the parents.Sometimes a woman may have had multiple miscarriages and finally have only one child.A constant reminder revisits the horror for her.
All dreams don't come true.While it is idyllic to have two kids ,one of each gender,all families are complete.Whether just a childless couple, whether a single mom and child, a single dad, parents and a single child or an aging couple or a joint family consisting of 15 people.
In this world where property battles between siblings have reached a zenith,where siblings spent the last few decades of their life fighting in court and not speaking with each other where siblings stay in different parts of the world and the job of taking take of aged parents falls on one sibling and resentment builds up,the purpose of having two or more kids gets defeated.
So while I agree that these occurances should not be a deterrent to have 2 kids,lets look around and see that the so called COMPLETE FAMILIES are also usually not complete.
I did have a tête a tête with my son the other day who confessed that even he would love to have a sibling who can do all the crazy things which a parent doesn't,he can be an elder sibling and take care of the little one,I agreed.And told him how we cant have everything we desire,and probably This is how GOD ENVISIONED OUR FAMILY,to be content to have a set of loving parents,extended family with grandparents,crazy cousins who are sometimes more closer than siblings.
Live and let live!God has blessed all the perfect and imperfect families equally!!