What's the best age gap between baby 1 and 2?

(59 Posts)
AlmondFrangipani Sat 26-Oct-13 16:11:31

We have a DS whose 12 weeks old and whilst we're not ready yet by any means to have number 2 I wondered what people's views are? We always thought we would have them close together but sleep deprivation is putting me off!!

maillotjaune Sat 26-Oct-13 16:20:19

You will sleep again! It took all of mine 6 months to work up to 10-12 hours sleep at night but you're half way there and yours might be quicker smile

I don't think there's a right answer to that is there? I have 18 months between the first two and then 5 years (and yes, the third was planned!).

2 under 2 is hard work with nappies / sleep disturbance / double buggies if you have late / unwilling walkers BUT on the other hand they are easier to entertain together and an 18 month old (well, ours, anyway) doesn't experience the jealousy / feeling put out by the new arrival that they have to share their parents with.

And then the very young children stage is out of the way relatively quickly. Unless you do what we did...

theignored Sat 26-Oct-13 16:28:42

18months! Our oldest two, boy and girl are 18months apart. while it was hard work, having two in nappies etc its really paid off in that days out are easily planned to suit them both and they really play well together. also the consecutive school years is also handy.
our mistake was having child.no.3 after a three year age gap, really wish we'd cracked on and had him straight away. One of us always seems to be with the baby while the older two are off having fun, imo it would have been easier to have three close in age.
My advice would be to decide how many children you'd like and have them close as poss....if you think you can cope!

AlmondFrangipani Sat 26-Oct-13 16:53:44

We are only going to have 2 as I've got a kidney condition which means I can't have anymore. We were thinking 18 months. It's going to sound silly but that would mean a Jan/Feb baby and I really didn't want a baby at that time of the year. I guess it will have to be 15 month ish or 20 month ish gap instead (if it happens at the right time too)!!

pinkpiggy Sat 26-Oct-13 16:56:04

Agree 18 months is ideal. Hard work initially but you get the baby bit done and the DC are close in age

LittleSiouxieSue Sat 26-Oct-13 17:19:37

I wanted DD 2 to be settled at nursery and potty trained so we thought 2.5/3 years and luckily stuck to it! I would not have changed this as they are close but have very different personalities and aptitudes. People who had children close together expected them to do everything together, eg after school clubs, activities etc and did not seem to see their children as individuals. If one wanted ballet, they both did ballet if you see what I mean.

wonkylegs Sat 26-Oct-13 17:23:46

It depends on you really
I have a health condition too which meant that before we even considered no 2, no 1 needed to be pretty much independent.
This means if we have a 2nd child there will be a large gap but for us that's totally planned (as that's the only way I can physically have kids although i'm sure it will attract lots of accident questions)

JoinYourPlayfuckers Sat 26-Oct-13 17:25:39

I think closer to 2 years buys you a lot of extra time alone with your first baby and it's not such a grind when you have a toddler and a baby as it is when your toddler is very small.

I would definitely go for 20 months rather than 15 months.

My sister had 13 months and I had 22 months and god, my life in the very early years was a breeze compared to hers.

EatDessertFirst Sat 26-Oct-13 19:37:25

There is a week shy of 2 years between my DD5 and DS3. Best timing ever! DD was on her way out of nappies when DS was born and now they entertain each other.

Knowing now how my children are I think if my DD had been much older she would have been more jealous of her wee brother but at just two she was ecstatic to have a sibling. Now they are inseperable but hyper at the same time and I wouldn't have them any other way!

Sleep deprivation skews all normal perceptions, making even thinking about a second little one seem laughable impossible. When they start to do things for themselves (like sleeping through, weaning) the memory of those first three months will be non-exsistent.

Good luck!!

fortyplus Sat 26-Oct-13 19:39:54

When I was in hospital with ds1 I asked what was the shortest sensible gap till the next one and was told 18 months - gives your body time to recover. So mine are 18 months apart. It was very tough for about a year or so but brilliant ever since. They're 18 and 19 now smile

MirandaWest Sat 26-Oct-13 19:41:31

Mine are 22 months apart and tbh I never really had any problems when they were small. They're 9 and 8 now and still pretty much ok smile

jimijack Sat 26-Oct-13 19:44:17

10 years here,I have a 10 year old & a 10 month old.
Planned age gap was 5 years due to desperately shocking lack of sleep. (Ds 1 was 5 and at school before he slept through the night)

Ended up with fertility and 're occurring miscarriage issues.

Ds2 was a HUGE surprise & we are still in shock.

Just shows that plans can go to shit.

ChipAndSpud Sat 26-Oct-13 19:51:09

I originally wanted a two year gap, but I don't feel quite ready yet, I think we will start trying next year and have a 3 year age gap.

I'm hoping that DS will be walking a bit further by then and also talking better. Plus I'm looking forward to the free nursery hours when DS is three so that I can still continue to send him to nursery whilst in on maternity leave with the baby.

I don't think there is an ideal gap tbh, just whatever feels right for you and your family.

StickChildrenTwo Sat 26-Oct-13 19:51:52

I say the bigger gap the better (but I am a wimp!) ...I have a 4 year age gap and it's worked brilliantly for us.

I have a 22 mth gap and it is brilliant, a bit harder when they are small as you essentially have two babies.

But they are 6 & 7 now, best of friends, into the same stuff and it's fab! DS1 has never been jealous and now can't even remember a time before ds2

MadameJosephine Sat 26-Oct-13 19:58:48

16 years! Wasn't planned but my eldest tells me he liked having me all to himself before his sister arrived and now he's old enough to babysit smile

TippiShagpile Sat 26-Oct-13 20:00:57

I have a year between mine which was very hard at first but really easy after a couple of years. And they are best friends.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sat 26-Oct-13 20:03:29

6 years for me. Under no circumstances would I want TWO pre-schoolers ruining my best years. grin

Catnap26 Sat 26-Oct-13 20:03:41

Mine are 12 months apart.its been hard and it has certainly put me off having anymore (yet) but the way I c it is if I choose not to have anymore it will never be as hard as this again.i wouldn't recommend what I've done but I don't regret it.

marriedinwhiteisback Sat 26-Oct-13 20:09:00

The one that you get because only the blessed are actually able to plan it.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sat 26-Oct-13 20:11:20

Well quite!

MolotovCocktail Sat 26-Oct-13 20:21:21

I agree with married. I have a friend who actually planned 2 summer babies because she didn't think that birthday parties in winter were much fun hmm

I still remember the agonising 2 years it took to conceive dd2. There is no optimum gap. It all depends on lots of factors.

WhatABeautifulPussy Sat 26-Oct-13 20:30:46

I think you can plan a minimum age gap. 18 months would have killed me, but your DS may be much easier!

I think if you can't contemplate having a baby fairly imminently (because pregnancy with another child to consider is very different) then you're not really ready.

zipzap Sat 26-Oct-13 21:24:14

I was planning on an 18 month-ish gap and ended up with 3 years. I really don't like it - the dc are close enough to sort of play together but often they both want different things out of it and it can easily end in mayhem. Despite this they are close and genuinely fond of each other (they're 8&5).

There's 14 months between my dsis and me - I think my mum had it much easier despite a hard slog for the first year or so.

Dsis has 3 kids - 4 years between 1 & 2, 14 months between 2&3. She preferred the gap between the youngest 2 as being the easiest pair to deal with.

barleysugar Sat 26-Oct-13 21:27:54

17 months here! They are amazingly close now at ages 6 and 7 and they get even closer with time. They get treated just like twins to be honest, completely the same with everything.

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