..to ask you what questions we need to ask to decide whether to have another baby?(17 Posts)
Just that really. We're going round in circles as to whether to have another baby: what questions do you think we should ask ourselves which might help us to decide...?? We've been through the usual money/sleep ones: is there anything which might tip the balance?!
(have posted already in 'Larger Families' but thought this might get more traffic: we're talking about a #4).
Where will we put it
How much time will we have to give to the other 3
Do we want another 16/18/21 years of schools
Do we mind everyone going "ooh, you're brave"
For context we've got 4, (last one was a surprise) and those are the things we find most challenging.
Do you really want another? If the answer is yes then go ahead
If there's any hesitation then move on to the list of pros and cons
It's not about having a baby but adding another person to your family. So, depending on the ages of your others and your current situation ...
* Do we want another person in our family?
* Can we afford another set of university fees / house deposit? <-- obvs dependent on what you're planning for DC1-3
* How would another pregnancy affect your other children? Do you sail through or are you likely to have HG / GD / PGP which would have an effect on your ability to be a useful parent for the next nine months?
* Do our existing children get enough of our attention? Will they be happy/satisfied with 75% of that?
* Can we fit another person's social life into our calendar?
* When the hypothetical baby starts school, would s/he get into the same school as the others? If independent, can we afford another set of fees?
* Would the sex of the baby make a difference (eg if you have BGG and another boy would muck up your bedroom arrangements)?
* Given the existing age gaps of your children, how close would DC4 be to his/her siblings?
* How would you cope if DC4 turned out to be DT1 and DT2?
* Does it feel like there's an empty seat at your table? Is there someone actively missing from your family?
FWIW logistics aside it was the last question that led us to have DC3 and not DC4.
For me it's down to money: can we afford to put another one through Uni; can we afford to pay for music lessons, sports, other extra curricular for an extra one; would we still be able to afford holidays abroad, theatre trips, school residentials etc.
Plus also, can I give another one enough attention when the two I have demand so much of me and I am already worn out!
I have just had my fourth (he is a month old and flipping adorable!.) Other dc are 10, 8 and 6. I didn't really ask myself questions it was more a gut instinct to have another. Once it was in our heads the idea of having a baby was so hard to shift. Some times you can over analyse. I would simply try to work out what feels right. Do you feel complete and happy as the family is now or do you still feel like someone is missing?
Also wonder this ourselves.
We wonder what would happen if one of us was ill / disabled / not around any more. Would we manage 4 kids alone? What if we both died - are there provisions for the children to remain a) with family and b) together. I am a real worrier and will only go for D.C.4 if I can make my peace with that. Being insured (life, critical illness and income protection) helps but it is the non financial that concerns me - despite it being unlikely to happen
Space for 6 adults - kids don't leave home at 16 any more!
Time / energy to dedicate to kids and other people / things which matter to us
Personally want them to each have own room once in secondary school
Thanks all. Lots of very thought provoking questions.
It's definitely the child we'd want not the baby-we refer to the first 12m as the 'black hole'.. In fact that's DH biggest quandary: whether it's worth the short term pain for the longer gain. So it's not about just wanting a newborn in the house.
We can afford another financially. Something could go wrong but we've got all the insurance etc in place we can and, to be honest, being left high and dry with four surely wouldn't be much worse than being left with three??
Pregnancy would be tough until week 11, then I'd be fine, if it followed my usual pattern.. Am slightly apprehensive about that definitely: I struggle in first tri.
I want another because I'm loving watching the others grow: seeing their personalities develop and seeing them become real people! Lovely to see them interact with each other also. I'm from a big family and I love the craziness of it.
I think my biggest fear is stretching myself too thinly emotionally so I can't give them all enough of me, especially as they grow up. But it does feel like there's a space: like there's a vacancy.
I read a thing the other day about how when you have two children there's one to manage; with three there's three relationships; with four there's six.
Sounds like you've made up your mind already. It's very prudent of DH to consider whether the first year is worth it
I'd say fuck no.
That a really interesting perspective - how many relationships can we manage? Our current relationship with our children is very good (admittedly they're all still very young!), and I never want them to feel that we don't have time or capacity for them.
I'd also ask myself how many sets of raging teenage hormones I want to deal with over how many years. I only have two DC's and now am soooooo glad we didn't have more. DD is 9 and the attitude etc is al changing as are our relationships.
If your existing are all very small still, I think you do need to think ahead abit. Mine are young teens, and I only have two, but I really think they take as much energy, time and emotion now as they did when they were younger. It's all just very different. In fact, emotionally, I think it is harder now than when they were little.
It would depend on how old you current youngest is and how old you and your DH are.
I know it shouldn't matter but I would not want another knowing, just as I should be getting to relax and enjoy life, it would be delayed again.
a 16 YO at 60+ - no thanks!
Has anyone mentioned cars and travel as yet? It's cost and it's logistics - everyday life for the logistics of getting everyone where they need to be at the right time and trips and holidays as well.
Personally I found my young DCs a joy. When they reached teens I found them so mentally exhausting for a good few years that I also felt worn down physically too. That lasted for a good ten years. It settled down and then partners started to be added into the mix too.
Current DC are 6, 3, and 1 (nearly 2). DH and I are both the right side of 35 . Because they're all fairly close we don't want a big gap, plus work-wise this is the perfect opportunity to have another: in a few years I'm hoping to be in a position where I can take on a f-t role and won't want to stop for a baby. So it's kind of now or never I think. Have to admit, the thought of four lots of hormones doesn't make me feel particularly keen for another....
Well it's the perfect time then if you do want that 4th.
Just ensure you and DH are completely on board with this.
We were having a similar discussion with number 3. The biggest thing for me was that regardless of whether it was practically good idea to have a third or not, I was unable to rule it out. So I couldn't make decisions about anything without thinking hmmm but what if we had three dc....so work decisions, school, doing stuff to the house. I hated the uncertainty and couldn't really let go of it.
So dc3 due in April
I guess my point is, are you really going to be able to make a 'no' decision and just stick to it? Or is it already too late.....
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