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AIBU to ask just how much of a change going from 2 to 3 children is?

(96 Posts)
octaviarose Tue 01-Jan-13 20:20:12

Just that really how much of change was it for you and do you find life with a family of five harder than a family of four? How do you find time for everyone?

Theas18 Wed 02-Jan-13 09:14:25


i'd say that was the idea time to have no 3, you can all enjoy the small one!

Theas18 Wed 02-Jan-13 09:16:43

Good things though about no3 and a biggish age gap- she wasn't a baby for long and was always running it keep up with siblings. There didn't seem to be a huge gap when planning outings etc they all liked everything. She's still wise and mature beyond her years at 13.

(however it's a slight source of tension with her peers now as a lot are very babyish and babied by their families too)

AmberSocks Wed 02-Jan-13 09:23:36

depends on many things but i found 2-3 hard but found 0-1,1-2 and even 3-4 very easy.mine are all still under 5 too.

SJisontheway Wed 02-Jan-13 10:01:16

I found 2 - 3 pretty easy. 1 - 2 was a terrible shock to the system. There are 2 years between each dc. They get on greatand share the same interests now ( should point out dc1 has sn). No regrets. Once I got passed the first couple of weeks it really was business as usual.

BlackholesAndRevelations Wed 02-Jan-13 11:41:28

Reading with interest as although I have just unfortunately miscarried dc3, we will be trying again. I'm erring towards the small age gap though, as from reading this it seems smaller is better in the long run. Would people agree? I have slightly less than two years between Dcs 1 and 2, and if we're lucky again soon itd be just over two years between 2 and 3.

Myliferocks Wed 02-Jan-13 11:51:38

Blackholes we found the small age gaps great when they were little but now it is a nightmare with all the hormones flying round.
4 out of my 5 were born within 4 yrs and 1 month.

janey68 Wed 02-Jan-13 12:05:47

Blackholes- we stopped at 2 but I think you're right: smaller age gaps are perhaps harder in the short term but better long term. We contemplated going for number 3 and tbh the deciding factor for us was that dd and ds had just got to the stage of being more independent, we could do things like someone mentioned upthread such as wake up on a Saturday and decide to do a family cinema trip, holidays were becoming more adventurous and active and also childcare costs were reducing.

A number of our friends decided to go for number 3 and it certainly seems that those who got on with it quickly and don't have large age gaps have found it easier long term. When we meet up with these families for weekend stuff, it's easy to find things we can all do together.

Conversely, the families we know who had 2 and then a big gap before number 3 said the first year was generally not too bad because it was a bit like having a first baby all over again, but the age gap really shows after that. One family in particular we rarely get to do things with as a whole family any more. Their older 2 are the same age as ours: 12 and 9 and then they have a 2 year old which makes it impossible to do cinema trips with them as a whole family, and even country walks are tricky as our two will tramp for miles now whereas they are curtailed by pushchair or having to carry the toddler.

If we had gone for 3 it would definitely have had to be with a close age gap so we had them all at similar phases.

JustFabulous Wed 02-Jan-13 12:11:45

We have 3. Someone said going 2-3 was no big deal. For some, maybe it wouldn't be but for us it was harder than 0-1 and 1-2. More kids than parents. Had to buy a bigger car. We had to change schools so school fees for 3, not two was expensive (one now at a Grammar school.)

Shoes, some clothes, new car seat and buggy. I thought it would be low expense but it hasn't been.

I wouldn't be without him, especially as we lost his sibling, but it is a bigger deal, for us, than when we had the first.

JustFabulous Wed 02-Jan-13 12:15:40

DamnBamboo - in your case.

DamnBamboo Wed 02-Jan-13 12:15:48

damnbamboo, maybe your experience is due to the ages of your children rather than in spite of it. My older two were 8&6 when we had DC3 and it really was harder for us. The fact that we went from having 2 very independent kids who were at school (and me back at work f/t) and were now just starting active/adventure type holidays meant that going back to all the newborn stuff and that pre3 high dependence time was very hard, not just on DH and I but on the two older ones. Suddenly, we couldn't just go out to eat on a weeknight at a moments notice or wake up on a weekend and decide to go to the cinema and stuff ourselves with popcorn. It was a big adjustment for us all. He's now 17mths and whilst we love him to bits and I wouldn't be without him now he's here, I can't hand on heart say I'd make the same decision again if I knew what I know now

Yes winter you may be right. But having said that no family is the same, siblings will often get along differently, if at all, parents will have different lifestyles and expectations etc...

Just out of curiousity, why couldn't you just go out to eat on a weeknight, or one of you just decide to take the kids to the pictures etc? It sounds to me that you are focusing on the inconveniences to your social life, rather than the the benefits of the addition of another child, or indeed the struggles faced by some with many young children. But I accept that I may have that wrong. Personally I can't imagine being bothered about not going to the pictures, swimming etc.. because of my baby (although I would argue that having a baby doesn't preclude participation in any of these activities), but that's just me.

JustFabulous Wed 02-Jan-13 12:18:14

I think age gaps have a lot of influence in how hard/easy it is too.

DC1 was 2 yrs 4 months when DC2 was born and 4 years 3months when DC3 was born.

DC2 was 22 months when DC3 was born.

DamnBamboo Wed 02-Jan-13 12:19:18

Sorry justfab I don't get your post to me.

I had to buy a bigger car (was due a new one anyway), new things etc..

3 kids will obviously cost more than two. This should be no surprise, surely?

DamnBamboo Wed 02-Jan-13 12:21:07

I'm not sure that that's what the OP is asking anyway? She is talking about the logistics of family and finding time, rather than expense.

And FWIW, I have 4 in total. I've given birth to three of them and my SD has now permanently come to live with us, although we've had her 50% of the time since she was 3 anyway. I found the personal adjustment from 1-2 much harder than 2-3.

DamnBamboo Wed 02-Jan-13 12:21:58

Snap justfab your DCs age gaps are the same as mine smile

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 02-Jan-13 12:29:55

Age gaps and the personality of the child seem to make the difference. I found 1-2 a total breeze for the first 8 months or so, but DD2 is a much more stubborn, physical child than DD1, and I can already see that the toddler years will be really hard. And sometimes I get jealous of friends whose youngest is 3+, because they are getting their lives back when I've just given mine up again. A big age gap is easy in that the elder children can do things for themselves, but hard in that you are used to a modicum of freedom. What I find hard about going back to the baby stage is the feeling of never being physically free. Not just 'not being able to go out at night' but never having my hands to myself, never being able to walk from one room to another without dealing with whining. I don't think it's the logistics of 1-2 that's the issue, it's the loss of freedoms so hardly won. So it doesn't surprise me that many of you who are saying 2-3 was awful have a BIG age gap between the youngest two.

I still want three. But I also want my life back. I can't reconcile those things, so I think I'll have the third and hope s/he's easier than the second!

JustFabulous Wed 02-Jan-13 12:34:48

You said it wasn't much harder 2-3 and it was fine. As if that is fact that can't be any different with anyone else. And yes, I thought it wouldn't nbe much more expensive as we already had clothes, cot, pram, etc etc.

JustFabulous Wed 02-Jan-13 12:35:51

She asked about change. Spending more money was a change.

niceguy2 Wed 02-Jan-13 12:39:30

Financially it is harder obviously. Especially as others have mentioned with things like holidays and family tickets which almost always assume 2 kids and two adults.

My eldest is 16 now and my youngest DSS is 5. The age gap really helps because my DD can babysit for the youngest meaning we can have nice nights out. I like having three.

My previous relationship was with a woman also with two kids. Four is much harder than three. For starters you have to have a people carrier and there's no way to squeeze into a normal car. Unless you have a great income you can pretty much forget foreign holidays. And school dinners alone will cost you over £160 per month.

Whitamakafullo Wed 02-Jan-13 12:51:31

thanks smile I'd love to start trying right away but for practical reasons I know we can't. My rose tinted specs regarding babies and pregnancy are well and truly on grin

Joiningthegang Wed 02-Jan-13 13:10:19

For me - hideous! Now age 10 5 and 6. First 2 easiest babies ever, no 3 cried all the time as cows milk intolerant

All seems to depend in circumstance

DamnBamboo Wed 02-Jan-13 13:17:06

No, I answered the OP questions (me!) and didn't state it as fact at all. Just giving my opinion, clearly that's what the OP is asking for. Many others gave their opinion and said it was harder, what of it?

DamnBamboo Wed 02-Jan-13 13:18:15

Don't be so agressive justfab

If you thought an extra child wouldn't cost more... well, I don't know what to say

Winterwalk Wed 02-Jan-13 13:44:58

Oh we could have gone to the cinema just one parent plus two kids; and we did but it's not the same as going out as a family. We don't have any living parents or siblings so no family help for babysitting the little one whilst we nip out with the older two for a couple of hours. He also BF constantly as he had terrible reflux which went on until he was 7mth and could sit up independently. This of course also meant that he was a terrible sleeper which in turn made us cranky and I just felt the older two missed out on so much time as we were always occupied and sleep deprived. He's 17mths now and still doesn't sleep through even though we did all the same calm routine stuff that worked with the other two. The HV said its because he spent the first 7mths in pain (was hospitalised it was so bad) and now it's habit/comfort but I cannot bring myself to do CC so we wait it out for now.

Im hoping things get easier soon although I know outings and holidays are always going to be tricky. I'm never keen on the baby stage anyway. If I could have given birth to 18mth olds I'd have had 10 kids. We have actually considered, ridiculous as it sounds after my posts, considered a 4th simply because we think the dynamics of 2+2 will work better and that DS will benefit from a sibling close in age.

I hope I haven't put anyone off.just sharing a different experience.

Mandy21 Wed 02-Jan-13 14:03:04

We had a slightly different situation in that we went from 0-2 (twins) then 2-3 when the twins were just 4. The 0-2 was like a sucker-punch that we never really recovered from wink so 2-3 seemed a breeze in comparison, at least the start with. The only real shocker was that the older 2 weren't having daytime naps when DD2 arrived, so whereas I'd previously been able to catch up with housework, cook, clean, sleep or just put my feet up when the twins were newborn & napping, I couldn't do that. I used naptime to actually concentrate on the twins even though I was like a zombie.

DD2 is now 3 (another tornado), DD1&DS are now 7 and finding time for everyone is hard (homework / stories / watching them in their various extra activities etc). I worry sometimes that my desire for Number 3 compromised the family of 4 that we had. I wouldn't change my family of 5 for the world now that DD2 is here, the 3 children are extremely close, but I do recognise that life would have been easier and we'd be better off financially if we hadn't have had her.

AmberSocks Wed 02-Jan-13 14:48:59

actually they dont have to cost more if you dont want them to.

you only genuinly need a car seat,and some clothes,i know people who dont even use nappies,iin fact you only need a car seat if you drive.

it wouldnt be for me as i love buying baby stuff-mainly clothes-but you dont need all the stuff.i think its mainly food which ends up costing more.

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