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When to have baby #2

(15 Posts)
Roxie85 Sat 20-Dec-14 23:01:34

My dd turns 1 on Xmas eve and both me and dh have agreed that we would like another at some point.

I am finally getting out of the 'oh my god this parenting lark is hard I don't know if I could ever do this again' stage and although I don't want to start ttc just yet, I am at a point where I can see it happening again and I wonder when is the right time.

I return to work full time in the new year and dd will start nursery. I want a new job as I hate where I am now so I am conscious of weighing everything up in my mind before talking to dh.

I worry that if I don't manage to get a new job I will rush into another child to get me away from work and this is not the right thing to do so thinking beforehand when might be right will help me keep focus.

When do I give up looking for new work and resign myself to the idea of staying where I am because it makes more sense financially (and job security wise) if we are going to have another.

I don't want a big gap between #1 and #2 but don't want it to be a nightmare. I think if I got a new job that I liked it would probably hold me off for a while anyway but I'm such a planner and thinker and I am now babbling........

Any age gap recommendations? Have a thought in my mind of having #2 when dd is a few months over 2yrs, is that a nightmare age gap? Would mean ttc in June/July when dd is 18 months, will she become a terror at that age and put us off #2?

lolalotta Sun 21-Dec-14 05:42:25

All I know is that you can plan age gaps all you like, but what will be will be. We fell pregnant very easily with DD1 and it took us ages with DD2 but we got there in the end. We have a just about to turn five year old and a 15month old...of course I think it's the perfect gap! wink I had them both at home for a year together and then my eldest started school just as DD2 was turning 1, perfect... Now a chance to concentrate on her a little bit!!!! grin

Blankiefan Sun 21-Dec-14 06:22:17

If you have any enhanced maternity pay at your current employer, this could be a factor. Usually there's a qualifying period with a new employer so you'd want to bear that in mind.

Roxie85 Sun 21-Dec-14 09:00:43

I don't get any extra mat pay, just the basic.
Am very conscious that I love dd to pieces and want to have plenty of time with her getting all my attention but don't want to get to a point where there is jealousy when another baby arrives.
Very aware it might take time to conceive #2. We were also v fast with #1 so expect to take longer next time. I guess that means I don't want to wait for too long in case it takes us years.
I think not knowing what is ahead behaviour and development wise with dd means I don't know how I would cope being pregnant/having a baby at the different stages with dd growing up.

lolalotta Mon 22-Dec-14 07:47:15

Even with a larger age gap, we have had very, very little jealousy, but I think that might be down to personality of my elder DD more than anything... grin

lolalotta Mon 22-Dec-14 07:47:53

Or it might be her maturity?

HappyAsASandboy Mon 22-Dec-14 08:06:07

We've just had our third baby, just after our twins turned four.

For me, four years is a great age gap. The four year olds can be left to potter from room to room with little chance of accident (fingers crossed!), they understood that a baby would be coming and were super excited about helping look after him. They understand the concept of waiting a minute while I change/feed baby and can reliably walk a fair distance. The tantrums are mostly over.

I am probably biased because my sister and I have a similar age gap and it's always worked well. There was little/no rivalry because we were in to different things at different times, it was obvious the elder one would be able to do things the younger couldn't etc. We were far enough apart in school years to not be directly comparable. In contrast, my DH and his sibling were close in age and found the small gap a nightmare during their school years as they were always in each other's pockets.

I think all age gaps have the potential to work or not, depending on the nature of the children and how they are raised. I know short gaps that have worked and not, and large gaps that have worked and not.

I think the primary consideration should probably be what you think will work for you. If you're happy, then your DC will be fine. So you like the newborn/nappy phase and so are happy to revisit it for DC2 or do you hate it and want to get it all over and done with? Or maybe you hate it so much you need a gap in it?! You see all the reasons for large and small gaps can be flipped on their head and used to decide either way!

It really is personal preference. I know I couldn't have navigated the 18 month to 3 years period with my twins with a newborn (or a pregnancy!), but then other people find that period a doddle confused

Mrscog Mon 22-Dec-14 08:15:47

I wouldn't worry too much about the gap - your children may or may not get on whatever the gap. For us at the point where you are now, we could have easily gone for the 2 year gap. In reality if we had it would have been absolute hell - DS (although lovely), has been the most challenging toddler of everyone's children Iknow. We finally took the plunge with TTC this year when he was 2.5, DC2 is due next April when he's 3, and his behaviour is now just starting to improve.

You need to consider how you'll feel with a newborn if you have a 2 year old who you have to fight every. single. day. to - do a nappy change, get dressed, brush teeth, have a bath, get in a car seat, go for a walk (wanted to be carried everywhere - refused pushchair), running off, hits and bites the moment you take attention away from them, wakes up at 5am every day. People talk about the difficult newborn phase, but I found that a breeze in comparison to the 18-26 month stage - it really did nearly finish me off and I shudder to think about how I'd managed if we'd gone for DC2 earlier. Lots of people's toddlers are easier than that though but it's a possibility I'd always consider!

Stripylikeatiger Mon 22-Dec-14 08:17:10

My 2 are 20 months apart and it's hard, really hard, mostly I just feel like a crap mum, at the moment I'm breastfeeding the newborn whilst the toddler watches tv, the newborn is asleep but still sucking and the toddler isn't happy to sit reading books with me so tv it is. Before the baby was born we were out doing fun/stimulating things every day and I feel so guilty about our quite frankly crap lifestyle at the moment sad

It's fine when dp is home, then he can hold the (un-put-downable) baby whilst I play with the toddler or dp can take the toddler out.

Our toddler doesn't seem that bothered by the lack of activities, in fact he seems to quite enjoy sitting at home in pyjamas watching tvhmm

We have had no jealousy, ds1 is really really sweet with the baby, if the baby cries he says "he needs a cuddle! Pick him up!"

It took us years to get pregnant with dc1, we quite fancied a 3/4 year age gap and as it took us 2 years+ to get pregnant the first time we started ttc when dc1 turned 1 (with the thought that it would probably take years to get pregnant if we ever were lucky enough to get pregnant again) and I got pregnant the first month!

DandyMott Mon 22-Dec-14 08:21:55

We will not be able to start trying for another until Dd is at least 3 due to simply not being able to afford it.

I didn't want a big age gap but it looks like I'm getting one so its good to hear that bigger age gaps are doable!

Dd is now 21 months and I don't think I could have coped with being pregnant or having a newborn so soon while she's still so little and needs me so much.

GlitzAndGigglesx Mon 22-Dec-14 08:30:21

I wanted a second when dd was a few months old but it wasn't a smart move financially as I was in a lower paid job at the time. The last 6 months I've really wanted another so we started trying. I'm 8w pg with #2 and dd will be 4 when this one is born. She will be starting full time education a month after baby is due which I think will be nice as I will have plenty of time alone with the baby

slightlyconfused85 Mon 22-Dec-14 11:50:32

All being well with my current pregnancy we are on course for a 2 year 9 month age gap. I hated the baby stage and couldn't face two under two but also didn't want to leave it too long for fear of never going for it, when we would like 2 ultimately. Still bricking it but hoping it will be bearable with DD ideally out of nappies.i know several people with 2 under 2 and a few with 18 month gaps and they are reaping the rewards now their children are 2 plus. If you can face two very little ones I would go for that!

CrispyFern Mon 22-Dec-14 12:01:11

There's no rules. Whatever happens will either work or not.

They might get on, they might fight like cats and dogs no matter the age gap. You might find it harder with two little ones, or with a bigger gap and different requirements. You won't know til you do it unfortunately! You can't plan!

redexpat Mon 22-Dec-14 13:06:34

my mother of 4 friend recommends 3 years.

Rtfairy Mon 22-Dec-14 14:30:29

I have 1 dd of 13 months, was originally going to go for a smallish gap and actually fell pregnant when she was 3 months old but that ended in mc. Now after talking through everything with dp we have decided not to think about ttc for a long while and hopefully will have a second dc when dd is at school so around 5.

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