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is this a crazy reason to have another child?

(14 Posts)
tapenade70 Wed 14-Oct-15 14:05:49

I have a wonderful toddler son and 2 lovely stepdaughters (age 8 and 10) who we see every other weekend and every weds. Life is pretty good. I am now at the point when a lot of my mum friends are onto their second baby and I cannot decide whether to go for it. I am so happy right now and he is an amazing child - so happy, eats well and sleeps well. But I am racked with 2 main thoughts - will he be lonely when his half siblings grow up and ..this is the main one..i love him so much and I am worried what I would do if something happened to him? You obviously can't have another child as an insurance policy nor would it in any way make up for losing a child...I know this is a crazy thought process running through my head and how unlikely it is anything would happen to my son...has anyone else felt like this? WWYD? It is probably a moot point as my OH doesn't really want any more and I also do think it would strain our relationship. But a bit of me is quite broody. I am told I will feel strongly one way or another soon enough and it will sort itself out..I am 39 so can't leave the decision too long...

LalaLeona Wed 14-Oct-15 19:33:50

I don't think it's a crazy reason at all, go with your gut instinct.

Ifiwasabadger Wed 14-Oct-15 19:41:46

In the nicest possible way, yes it is a crazy reason.a sibling is no guarantee of a friend. I'm a very happy only child. My Dh has a brother who he hates and hasn't spoken to for 20 years. His sister he is up and down with. Oh and neither he nor his brother speak to his mum.

One child can be and is brilliant...I'm testament to that (ha ha) and my DD is a very happy only.

MadauntofA Wed 14-Oct-15 20:07:55

I don't think it is crazy - I went through a phase of wondering whether to have no.3 just in case something happened to one of the others and the other would be left alone. Couldn't stand the idea of doing the baby thing again so came to my senses! Only have another if you and partner really want another though, your DS will be happy either way

DuchessOfWeaseltown Fri 16-Oct-15 21:07:09

OP... er... are you me?
Same age and same dilemma.
Well, not exactly the same dilemma as we have further reasons for it not being a great idea to have another (medical and financial) but nothing so overwhelming that we couldn't decide to risk having another if we really desperately wanted one.
The thing is, we don't desperately want another. Or even vaguely want another. We are very very happy as we are.
BUT... and I would never dare say this out loud in RL because I, like you, recognise the sheer embarrassing craziness of sounding like you're saying you'd have another as some sort of 'insurance policy' - ie that God forbid anything should happen to Child Number One, at least you'd have Child Number 2... before anyone jumps on me, I do recognise, as I'm sure the OP does, how insane and horrendous that sounds!!! What, like it would sudddenly be OK because oh well, you have another child???!!!
But it doesn't have to be rational for it to be a 'real' enough fear, I get that totally.
I don't really know how to answer your question though other than to say, you do know that it's not logical, right?!
But I still have this secret fear and it's impossible to say it out loud to anyone in RL.
fwiw I think it's a bad reason to have another child if it's the only reason you'd do it.
If you have other, good and rational reasons why you want to do it then go for it, but I think on its own it's a terrible terrible reason! Because it isn't a 'reason', it's a hobgoblin, just there to frighten yourself with.
Do I make any sense?!
Sympathies, it's a horrible state of mind to get into, I do know about that!

MaudeTheMopLady Fri 16-Oct-15 23:19:24

Duchess you talk a lot of sense! Op I could have written your post!! I too am very happy with my little boy and my partner too does not want anymore; it would put us in a sticky situation financially (and our relationship would suffer no doubt) but I have this crazy fear too. No advice I'm afraid, but am watching with interest!

HerRoyalNotness Fri 16-Oct-15 23:25:19

I understand how you feel in the thoughts of losing one. I have 2 and wanted more of a tribe and thought if we have 3 and we lost one, the 2 would still have each other.

Well, we lost the 3rd, and all I learnt is that, sadly, I could lose them all. I am still desperate for another, but it will not be.

you don't need any reason to have a child, it sounds like your household is lovely and another would be welcomed into the tribe with much love. And that's the only reason you need.

Benzalkonium Fri 16-Oct-15 23:29:08

A close family friend lost her only (adult) child a few years ago. I think the effect on her life is more profound than it was for a relation who lost one of 4 children, and who now has grandchildren.

So insurance policy sounds harsh, but there is reality behind it.

standinginthedoorway Sat 17-Oct-15 13:37:25

I think it's a bit mad tbh, though I have to confess I had exactly the same thought! Think it's natural to think like that.

I realised though, that if I had more DCs and anything terrible actually did happen to DC1 I would be devestated regardless. Arguably, for me at least, having more DCs this scenario might even be worse for us as a family as I imagine it would be horrendous for the hypothetical DC2, 3 etc.

My fear is that I would be an unhappy and inadequate parent if I went ahead and had a child I didn't really want in the first place. I don't think having more children than I actually want would make me feel better and I wonder how able I would be to parent the surviving DC(s) if anything happened to DC1.

One cannot predict anything - one could (God forbid) have loads of children and lose them all in a huge accident - I know of a family who lost 2 children at once - it happens.

I have stopped looking at pros and cons now and decided that, until I have a really strong urge to have another baby (as I did before having DC1), I won't be planning one.

DuchessOfWeaseltown Sat 17-Oct-15 19:28:38

I totally agree with you, standinginthedoorway: arguably in the appalling situation of losing a child, it could be framed as even WORSE (if that were possible) to lose one if you have one other, as the loss of a sibling must be absolute agony too, plus you yourself as the parent have to somehow deal with your own grief and that of your surviving child... God, can't believe I'm even putting all this down in words but the OP's thread has brought all this to mind! Please God none of us ever have to be in theis awful position no matter how many children we may have sad

I think in a way, crazy though I know it all sounds, the OP does have a strangely valid biological point, even if it sounds odd to be framed in this way. Surely in centuries past, part of the reason for having so many children (apart from merely the lack of birth control) was absolutely as some sort of insurance policy - child mortality was high and with no welfare state whatsoever plus a feudal economy, you would have needed a certain amount of children just to survive your old age yourself...?

Benzalkonium's point is an interesting one and did make my heart hurt for a bit on reading it as yes I can very much see that losing an only child would be a different experience (though no more awful, logically) than losing one of four, especially when you also have grandchildren. Obviously being left 'alone' like that, as a parent, must be devastating beyond comprehension. But they really are just two very different circumstances (partly because of the grandchildren thing) and also because (disclaimer: This is NOT to say that losing one of four children is just like misplacing your favourite socks or something; I cannot even imagine the agony of it) four is by any standards a big family, a very different feel from a family with two kids. So - if I'm right, OP - as you are only thinking of adding one more to your family and not three or four more, for example, I'm not sure, even by your own 'logic', that the situation of losing one of two would neccesarily be any less destructive a blow to your family life as losing one of one would be.

Oh, Lord, I'm tempted to delete all of this as it sounds so awful in print - again, I am not for a single minute saying that losing a child when you have many is easier than if you have only one or two. I had a young friend at school who was killed in a road accident when we were 12 and she was one of 4 children - I can't believe her parents' pain at losing her was lessened by having three other children still living sad

Let's all hope for the blessing of healthy children no matter how many we have!

Nicknamegrief Sat 17-Oct-15 19:34:54

I see where you are going but I would say it's not that the pain is any less, but rather there are more reasons for life to go on. When you have more than one child and one child is being a PITA, the other(s) can lessen the PITA by being a joy. Of course they can all play up at once....

captainproton Sat 17-Oct-15 20:03:45

I think when it comes to half siblings, if you never have a full sibling like your other siblings might you can feel like the odd one out. A whole other aspect of their life is not part of yours, especially whatever they get up to during contact with the other parent.

I know my friend also struggled with how they never did anything as a family unless her half siblings were there and it affected when she became a teenager.

So I think when you are an only half sibling in a set of 3 or more siblings you are going to have a very different upbringing to an only child or a child with full siblings.

So if you don't have another think how you will manage your child as they all get older and perhaps the half siblings hit puberty and want to socialise with friends more. Don't make family life all about when the eldest are with you.

My eldest is 3 and enjoys spending time with her big brother, my stepson, she gets upset when he leaves, but it doesn't last long before her 2 year old brother comes along wanting to play.

If she didn't have him I imagine I'd be spending a lot of time consoling her and the goodbye stage would not be as easy as it is currently.

So for us we decided before we had dd, we'd have to have another one as well. In fact we are having 3 all quite close in age, this is because the little ones enjoy same toys and games and amuse each other well. Best of friends and enemies but it's fab to see their little games they play.

OhMakeMeOver Sun 18-Oct-15 15:32:35

Speaking as someone with 4 siblings... I see no benefit to having siblings. That's my experience. We all have to find our own way in the world at the end of the day. We encourage every child to make friends whether they have siblings or not. They might help with homework etc. but you can easily do that.
I do have the thought sometimes (I have one child) what would happen if anything happened to him? But losing any child is heartbreaking. You wouldn't "replace" them in any way. If my son wasn't here nor would I be, to be honest. I don't feel any desire to have a 2nd, I have no interest in it whatsoever.

I think bottom line is... If your desire to stay as is is greater than your desire for another, then stay how you are, but if your desire to have another is greater than staying as is, then do it. Would you regret having another, what's stopping you etc., or would you regret not having another?

EmpressKnowsWhereHerTowelIs Sun 18-Oct-15 15:38:01

From the POV of having another child to keep your first one company... DSis and I are very close now, but couldn't stand each other for most of our childhood.

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