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Lifestyle

April 3, 2014

Dear Abby: Readers weigh in on pros and cons of only children

Dear Abby: “Maybe Only One in Georgia” (Jan. 7), who asked whether she should have a second child, needs to understand there are no guarantees. Her 5-year-old could end up hating her younger sibling, or adoring her. Parents create a child because they want to share their union with a new life. Each child is unique and represents a life commitment, not just 18 years of hard work.

I am the youngest of four, the “surprise” baby boy when my parents were in their 40s. I loved them, and they never made me feel unwanted. I adore my older sister. We were always close despite the eight-year age difference. My two brothers are very different than I am, and we don’t have much to do with one another.

“Maybe” should not produce another child to be a playmate to the one they have. It should be done only if they’re financially, emotionally and spiritually willing and capable of rearing another person. If not, they should enjoy the extra time, money and energy they’ll have, and perhaps give a needy dog or cat a home.

Youngest Child In Savannah

Dear Youngest Child: I told “Maybe” I couldn’t decide this for her, but would open up the question to my readers. And they sure had some comments! Here are a few:

Dear Abby: My advice is DON’T! I have two sons, 27 and 31. They hardly know each other and have no interest in what the other is doing. It breaks my heart, as they are the only close blood relatives they have.

I didn’t have the younger one so the older would have company. I wanted another baby. I was 29 but wouldn’t consider it at “Maybe’s” age (38). How long does she think she can run that fast?

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