2 children, but do you wish sometimes you still only had 1?

(93 Posts)
KLou111 Thu 11-Apr-13 21:44:42

Basically the title says it all really.
My DH and I have the most beautiful, lovely, loving nearly 20 month old DS who we absolutely adore.

We always wanted 2, but DH loves our little family as it is and really can't imagine he would ever want or need another.
I'm on the fence. I would love a sibling for our DS, and feel I would love another child one day, but I am not 100%, so with that obviously I would go with not having a second.

I just feel I wouldn't have enough time in the day, and I would feel so guilty not having the time for DS as I do now.

We enjoy our family holidays, more so now our DS is becoming a lovely age to enjoy them, with a baby they would become a lot more stressful.
We enjoy our own time with friends, but with 2 we could see it being a lot more difficult to get 'time out' for a few hours or an evening on our own, which at the moment my parents would happily have DS overnight once or twice a week if we'd let them. They say they would also happily have a second baby overnight too, but in reality I'm not so sure.
With one child, if we are lacking a babysitter, usually DS stays with us no problem, but 2 we would be a lot more restricted.

There are so many more 'cons' for having 2 for us than 'pros', but I just wanted to know your experiences. Did any of you have 2 children and really truly wish you'd stuck with one?

MUMMYDUDE Sat 13-Apr-13 22:47:43

No one can give you the answer but I can tell you my experience. We have two. When I had my son, we kept discovering lovely new stages, the crawling stage, the walking stage, the talking stage etc. I didn't want two close together as I wanted to make sure we had time to give my son plenty of time, love and cuddles. I'd had a big brother and loved it when I was growing up and still get on really well with him. I wanted the same. We eventually decided to have a 3 year gap and tried for number 2 when my son was about 27 months old. Unfortunately, I had an ectopic pregnancy so things were delayed. One overy and a tube less later, I got pregnant again and had a lovely little girl. There are 4 years, 2 months between them. My son is the perfect big, protective brother. They play lovely together on holidays on the beach or in the swimming pool - I personally think it is easier having two as they entertain each other so much, even with the age difference. Yes it is more expensive, especially having one of each, but it is worth it.

rowtunda Sat 13-Apr-13 23:09:54

I really don't get when people worry about not having enough love for DC2 or that they won't be able to love DC2 as much. All sounds a bit melodramatic to me, maybe it's because I'm a younger sibling so I never even considered that it could be a possibility that you could love one child less or that you you wouldn't have enough time for DS1 when DC2 comes along.

Thousands of millions of parents have been able to love more than one DC - so don't over think things!

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Sun 14-Apr-13 09:03:13

row I think it's because it's hard to imagine loving an abstract child as much as the one you have - kind of like imagining what it's like to be dead or something. However, most people do make the leap of faith and discover that it's all fine (second child, not death). I did find the first few weeks of having DD tough because I "missed" DS.

changeforthebetter Sun 14-Apr-13 09:22:23

I have never regretted having a second DD - it's an impossible one to answer really. I can't imagine life without her. She is wonderful (if a proper madamwink) DD1 struggles with life and DD2 is her best friend, despite all Dd1's problems.

Logistically, it has to be easier. If your DS has cousins who are close in age and proximity that helps too.

Good luck with your decision. brew

shopafrolic Sun 14-Apr-13 09:29:41

KLou i completely get where you're coming from. I debate this in my head all the time.
I am 40, my DH is 43. I have a brother who I have an awful relationship with, my DH has a fantastic relationship with his brother.
DH is adamant that he doesn't want a second child - I am 90% sure that I don't either.
DS is fantastic. 2.5 yrs old, very happy, sociable, sleeps well, good eater. He goes to nursery 2 mornings a week which he loves, is very outgoing and sociable, happy playing on his own or with others.
At the moment we are very fortunate and can do lots of things together as a family, but DH and I can also still pursue hobbies etc.
Every now and again I think should I have a second (biological clock ticking) but since I don't know - I believe I am best not to, especially respecting DH's views. I would rather be a happy family of three, than put pressure on our relationship by having a second child that DH doesn't want. We often say that if we had met five years earlier, we'd wait until DS was 4 or so and then have another, but our age denies us that and we feel that we simply couldn't cope with two at the moment. Also, the prospect of having twins second time around is unthinkable for us (emotionally and financially).
It might sound selfish, but I think it is important to do what feels right in your gut, and I do not have a burning desire for more children. Selfish I may be, but sitting here watching DS zoom round the room on his trike with a big smile on his face, i think we'll be just fine!
Whatever you decide, make it right for your family unit.

Bumpsadaisie Sun 14-Apr-13 11:41:33

One of the arguments against having 2 is that you will "miss" part of DC1s development because you have less time. This is true. Inevitably the focus is diluted.

But (1) I think this is not necessarily a bad thing for DC1 and that actually not having the full focus of two obsessive parents (like I know we were) might actually be quite a release for them!

And (2) some very interesting and important development in DC1 is fostered by having a younger sibling. If you don't have a second, you miss that!

I don't think you can overthink it. You have to go by feelings. Do I want another baby, or not (at the moment). If not, then leave it. As your eldest grows he won't be a baby any more and he will look outside the home to peers; at that point you might start feeling broody, OP! But at 20 months, he is still your baby. No wonder you don't feel the need for another.

LapinDeBois Sun 14-Apr-13 22:35:53

Bumpsadaisie I'm glad you were brave enough to say what I was about to come on and say: that there can be downsides to being too focussed on one child. Before DS2 was born I was very much 'in love' with DS1, to the extent that I didn't really think about anything else - and looking back, I think being the receptacle of so much parental love, attention and expectation was probably quite hard for him (I was also far too over-protective and 'helicopter parenty'). I'm not saying you're like this - but I certainly was. When DS2 was born I think it was probably very hard for DS1, precisely because I'd been so obsessive about him previously - I did do the classic thing of falling out of love with DS1 for a time, which must have been difficult for him (however much I obviously tried to hide it!). But, as awful as that sounds, I'm convinced it's been good for him in the long run - he's much more confident and independent and just freer now, without me constantly hovering over him. I'm not suggesting for a moment that this would be true for everyone - but I'm a fairly obsessive/control freaky person, and it was certainly true in my case. After a relatively tricky couple of years, we're sort of falling in love again now, which has been wonderful, but this time round it's much more balanced and healthy.

The other thing I would say is, it's easy to think in terms of a mooted second child as 'another baby' rather than 'a different child' - but of course a second child will bring an entirely new personality into your family. DS2 is so utterly different from DS1 that he really adds a different dimension to our family unit and makes us feel more complete. (In our case, that's partly because DS1 is so similar to DH in every way - looks, personality, interests etc - and DS2 is far more like me.)

YoniSingWhenYoureWinning Wed 17-Apr-13 19:46:46

But (1) I think this is not necessarily a bad thing for DC1 and that actually not having the full focus of two obsessive parents (like I know we were) might actually be quite a release for them!

And (2) some very interesting and important development in DC1 is fostered by having a younger sibling. If you don't have a second, you miss that!

Yes, yes, yes and yes to both these points. I think the benefit to our DC1 from having DC2 has been immeasurable in ways I would never have even thought of. She has become so much more considerate, warm and loving. For me (and I can only speak for myself) having a sibling is the best thing that has ever happened to her.

imour Wed 17-Apr-13 22:58:30

i would of regretted having one child to be honest my two are so close , it was nice when they were small as they were ideal playmates , and its nice to know they will always have each other when im not around ,my friend has one child and he always seems bored and wants attention , like hes lonely .

rhetorician Wed 17-Apr-13 23:04:20

It is hideous when they are ill...have just barely survived dd1 (4) being in hospital for 5 nights with pneumonia, and dd2 (16 months) at home with vomiting, diarrhoea and ear infection. BUT they missed one another horribly, dd1 is so lovely (for the most part) with dd2, that I often feel a bit envious. I am an only child myself, and none the worse for it, but am delighted to see them get on. At the same time, looking after one much easier than two, but possibly not in a couple of years when they really will play together. Stick at one if that's your gut instinct, but you will get a lot of comments, not all of them kind. I have spent years being pissed off at the only child= spoiled etc assumption that so many people, wrongly, make

yellowhousewithareddoor Wed 17-Apr-13 23:09:02

My daughter is 16months and to be honest there were times I regretted it (usually after repeated nights of sleep deprivation). However now we are mainly out of that stage (and I did find the first year very tough after a traumatic birth, lots of "what have I done?!") I am so so so glad we had two.

Just tonight my 4 year old and 16month old were playing together on my bed (with me sat half in it) after a bath. They were playing games of hiding under the towel, peepo, and just insanely giggling. They give each other so much joy and hearing them laugh is just wonderful. We all snuggled up together for stories and then, as we do, baby and sister have a goodnight cuddle and kiss and it is heartbreakingly cute. Yes its practically and physically quite hard at times but its been so worth it.

yellowhousewithareddoor Wed 17-Apr-13 23:10:10

Ooh just realised, rhetorician, that we have similar aged daughters smile Sounds like a tough time, hope they all feel much better soon.

rhetorician Wed 17-Apr-13 23:13:31

Clearly we do, dd1 wavs jan 09, dd2 dec '11. Was hard going, house a wreck as DP and I literally switched places about every 24 hrs. But they were so thrilled to see one another smile

yellowhousewithareddoor Thu 18-Apr-13 00:00:32

dd1 feb 09 and dd2 dec 11 here! Great age gap smile Well done for surviving it! Hope you all catch up on sleep soon too. It's very lovely to see their love for one another. My brother and I aren't particularly close and its lovely to see a sibling bond working.

wiltingfast Thu 18-Apr-13 00:09:49

God no, do not regret having no 2 at all AT ALL! 21m between my 2, first 6m were hardcore tough but just gets better and better since. I can't imagine having only 1. Is it not a bit intense? All that focus on 1?

rrreow Thu 18-Apr-13 17:10:51

I don't have a 2nd DC yet but will soon (31w pregnant). I imagine that you might wish longingly for the days of only one from a practical point of view (the same way you think longingly of the time you didn't have kids and could go to the cinema, or the time you were single and weren't accountable to anyone but yourself!). But I cannot imagine ever wishing a second (or subsequent) child away from an emotional point of view.

lydiajones Fri 19-Apr-13 17:31:59

I found it really hard at first as my DS1 was going through a really difficult stage at 2.5 years when DS2 was born. I never regretted it though and although at the time I wished I had left a bigger age gap, now I actually wish it was smaller if anything. They play together so much now and if we are out at a park or on holiday they always have each other there. They fight a lot too but the getting on bits are starting to outweigh the fighting now!!

I am actually considering a third now!

I have two. Best decision ever.

Yes it's harder to get out, it's more expensive and your relationship with dc1 changes. But they are both amazing and I love watching th grow together. You always get naysayers saying they hated their siblings. However I love mine.

Dd and ds are really growing together nicely. Ds wants his sister to play with 90% of the time. Dd looks up to her brother. They both will have different family relationships aside from parents, grandparents etc. it teaches them to share, to empathise and negotiate. Having a sibling around is great IMO.

As for loving them, I don't love one more than the other and my love for my first hasn't diminished with the arrival of my second. I see my second grow up with the experiences of my first and I appreciate it so so so much more.

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