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What is the ideal number of children? What was your main deciding factor in having a third?!

(136 Posts)
EyesOfBlue Sun 29-Jan-17 12:30:33

AIBU to ask this?

Totally unscientific of course! I just wondered what people perceive to be as the ideal number of children to have!

I've one of each, boy and girl, but keep thinking I'd love just one more!

Does the desire to experience pregnancy and newborn stage again fade over time. My children are aged 2 and 4!

Sensible part of me says that two children is lefty especially as they get older and more activities, school etc to contend with. can't bear to part with my buggy

Sorry for the ramble!

Chottie Sun 29-Jan-17 12:33:28

I had two DC and they are now grown up.

If I had my time again I would have had 4 DCs......

Oysterbabe Sun 29-Jan-17 12:33:31

I have one currently and would like one more. If I felt inclined for a 3rd I think age might prevent it.
I've also decided that 2 is good environmentally, DH and I have made our replacements so no net gain to the population.

puglife15 Sun 29-Jan-17 12:37:15

I would have liked three or four but sticking with two. Too old, too tired and too mortgaged up for a third, plus as Oyster says we're well populated enough.

Famalam13 Sun 29-Jan-17 12:38:29

It's very subjective obviously! From talking to people the ideal in society's opinion is one boy and one girl. If you have none you are heartless and empty. If you have one you are selfish and cruel. If you have two boys you must want a girl to go on spa days with. If you have two girls you must want a boy as boys are so much easier. If you have more than 2 you are greedy.

Famalam13 Sun 29-Jan-17 12:39:23

I fall into the selfish and cruel category, fortunately DS hasn't got the memo and is happy and loved grin

Mrsglitterfairy Sun 29-Jan-17 12:44:02

We have 2 DSs and would never have any more. We used to think we wanted 3 but 2 is just such hard work I can't imagine having another one. Sometimes I wish we had stuck at one but I'm sure as they get older and actually like each other it will be nice having 2

LucyLocketLostIt Sun 29-Jan-17 12:47:52

I have two and I'm done.

WashBasketsAreUs Sun 29-Jan-17 12:52:57

I had one DD and we wanted another one. I ended up with twins second time round! 3 girls under 3 weren't too bad, just needed to be organised. However 3 teenage girls.......? They're all grown up now so should be better, tho over the last few weeks twin 2 has tried my patience, shall we say?

HainaultViaNewburyPark Sun 29-Jan-17 12:54:23

I have two. DD is 12 and DS is 10.

I've got over the urge to have any more. I like our life, and we'd have had to make huge sacrifices to afford any more children. I'm totally at peace with our decision to not try for any more.

Piffpaffpoff Sun 29-Jan-17 13:00:43

I initially wanted three but we were both mid/late 30swhen I had DC1 and after dc2 DH made the v good point that we'd done well to have two healthy ones with no issues for them or me and perhaps we should not push our luck. So we didn't and I'm happy with that. No regrets at all.

I don't think there is an ideal number generally, I think it's down to you as a parent and your circumstances and desires - your space, money, patience, support network, job and health will determine what is the ideal number for you.

early30smum Sun 29-Jan-17 13:05:58

Before I had kids I was pretty sure I wanted 4. DH felt the same.

We have 2, one of each. Whilst we would like one (or even two) more, we probably won't. Money for one thing. DC are at state primary but we want to have the option of going private for secondary and it's looking unlikely that that would be an option for more than 2 children. Youngest is 4 and the idea of going back to the baby phase doesn't fill me with joy. DD is hard work and I'm not sure a baby would help that. DS already gets less time than I'd like because DD can be so tricky so again not sure a baby would help.

I don't think there is a magic number. We are 90% done but I'm (hopefully) young enough to wait a few more years to decide completely.

Piratefairy78 Sun 29-Jan-17 13:07:15

We have 3DC. 2 would definitely have been easier but I wouldn't change it. What really grates me though is that we had DS, DD and then DD. BIL And SIL have DD, DD and then DS. We get so many comments from PIL about how DD2 must have been an accident as we already had 1 of each sex but it's okay for BIL and SIL as they had 2 DD before their DS.

We had 3 under the age of 4 at one point. A few years later we entertained the idea of possibly having another and couldn't decide so put it on hold. DD2 is now 6 and we won't have any more. We are happy and don't want the baby stage anymore but it took time to get to that stage.

budgiegirl Sun 29-Jan-17 13:08:11

It's a personal thing of course, but IMO the jump from 2 to 3 is massive.

There's the money - it is more expensive, even just down to the car you drive, the holidays you take etc , the works really is set up for families of four, and you don't really notice until you don't fit anymore! Even buying food, everything comes on twos, fours at sixes!

Then there's the logistics - it's hard to get three kids to three different places, often at the same time! We do rely quite a bit in the kindness of others for this, and return the favour when we can.

One to one time takes longer of course, and I've found the amount of emotional support has increased now they are older.

And the relationships between them are harder to manage. If you have two kids, there is one relationship to manage, but with three, this triples. There's usually always at least one argument going on!

For me, I'm so glad I had three , I can't imagine life without them, but it is much,much harder than 2.

ShowMePotatoSalad Sun 29-Jan-17 13:08:56

I have 1. Undecided about having a 2nd and in no rush. Definitely wouldn't have a third.

DrHarleenFrancesQuinzel Sun 29-Jan-17 13:11:27

I have 3. DS, DD1 and DD2 in that order.

I decided I wanted 3 when I was pregnant with DD1. That was always the case even though I did have one of each.

The deciding factor for us (me and DH) was that we'd never regret having a 3rd, but we might have regretted not having one.

Ive never had the desire to have any more. DD2 is now 5. Im just pleased I dont get to do all the horrible bits again. No matter how much the good bits make up for it.

AllTheLight Sun 29-Jan-17 13:11:36

I have three. Always thought I'd have two but didn't feel quite 'done' in the end.

Agree with a pp that 2 to 3 was a massive jump for me and I found it really tough for the first couple of years - mainly because DC3 was the worst sleeper of the three by miles!

Now they're all at primary school and I love having three!

PolarBearGoingSomewhere Sun 29-Jan-17 13:12:30

Is there ever a factor in deciding to have another DC apart from "I want one"? It's more an absence of factors against it, surely?

Undoubtedly each extra child means less time, less money, less space but if those factors can be mitigated and if it's something you both really want it will also bring joy.

hobnobsaremyfave Sun 29-Jan-17 13:16:19

We have four
Wouldn't have it any other way
Five would have been a step too far grin

JsOtherHalf Sun 29-Jan-17 13:19:08

Given the new benefits restrictions, if you ever need to make a new tax credits claim, you would only get benefits for 2 children.

I know one friend who said she could only hold the hands of 2 children.

CountFosco Sun 29-Jan-17 13:20:14

We love the chaos of three (most of the time). I think 2 would be a bit boring. But I think most people (assuming no fertility problems) have the right number of children for them. Some people find 1 child too much to cope with, some have 4 and still want more. No-one is a perfect parent but most kids turn into reasonably functioning adults.

Niklepic Sun 29-Jan-17 13:21:03

My ideal was two. I had DD and DS seven years and as far as I was concerned I was done. However when DS was 5 he was diagnosed with DMD which is life limiting. I panicked about DD being on her own if DS passed away so we decided to try for number 3, despite the risks of me having another boy with DMD (it was found that I was a carrier with a 50/50 chance of passing on to another boy as it's x linked recessive)

I became pregnant and had a blood test at 9 weeks which showed I was having a girl so we luckily needed no further tests.

Dd2 is now aged 4 and I am definitely done! Life with a preschooler, a tween with a disability and a 19 year old daughter is certainly interesting.

GarrulousGrimoire Sun 29-Jan-17 13:22:08

I have three, I perhaps if younger would have liked 4 but my huge broodiness has gone and the odd pang can be put to bed at the thought of sleep deprivation!

grumpysquash3 Sun 29-Jan-17 13:23:35

I have DS1, DD, DS2. The older ones were nearly 3 and 4.5 when DS2 was born.

Three is my perfect number. The genders were irrelevant but happen to have worked out very nicely. They all get along well, in pairs as well as in a 3. Two are teens now and it's still lovely.

Obviously I am greedy and probably destroying the planet, but it's a nice way to do it grin Although I'm hoping they will make their contribution to the greater good as adults.....

Trills Sun 29-Jan-17 13:24:49

The ideal number of children is zero wink

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