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Tell me about your 3-4 year age gap...

(31 Posts)
GuybrushThreepwoodMP Mon 09-Feb-15 18:37:54

... and why you love it.

Due to a mmc and not being ready to ttc again yet, our planned less-than-3 year age gap will now be bigger. I want to hear all about how wonderful it is to have a 3-4 year gap please!


YokoUhOh Mon 09-Feb-15 18:42:00

I'm watching this with interest, OP, DS is 2.3 and I still haven't had a period (extended breastfeeding).

WeatherWatchingWitch Mon 09-Feb-15 18:47:50

Just bumping this as I am interested too smile

Myfanwyprice Mon 09-Feb-15 18:54:39

We'd planned an 18 month to 2 year age gap, but it just didn't work out like that and dd was born when ds was 3.8.

Dd is now almost 5 and ds coming up to 9, I can honestly say that most of the time they get on well 90% of the time.

In one way it was difficult going back to the baby stage again, but dd seemed liked such an easier baby because I was much more relaxed and didn't get stressed about the small stuff.

JudgeJudyKicksAss Mon 09-Feb-15 19:03:46

There is a 3/4 year gap between my 3DC. DS1 is 19, DS2 is 15 and DS3 is 11. It wasn't planned like that, its just the way things turned out.
I feel very lucky, there hasn't been too much competitiveness between them and I've always had enough time to spend with each child as bedtimes/hobbies etc have never overlapped.
When we had a 3 bedroomed house there was a bit of bedroom shuffling going on as we tried to get the perfect combination where each child didn't disturb the other and then eventually we were lucky to move so that each boy got their own room.
They are very different, different personalities, different interests etc. The older and younger used to gang up a bit on the middle one but as they've got older it doesn't happen anymore.
Sometimes I think I've just got one out of teenage years and to Uni, the other one is hitting his teenage surliness now and when he finishes the other one will be hitting it so effectively another 8 years of it, but deep down I'm very proud of them all.
Gaps were great for nappy/toilet training/starting school etc.
I don't think I'd want to have done it any other way when I reflect back though I'm sure there's some rose tinted glasses there!

Patilla Mon 09-Feb-15 19:12:07

4.5 year age gap here.

Absolutely brilliant and I love it. They adore each other, DS is so fantastic with his little sister, endlessly patient and encouraging and in return DD worships the ground upon which he walks.

DS gets to be a big boy at school and DD goes to toddler groups and then pines for him from the moment she wakes from her nap until school run time.

They are going to be so much trouble this summer though, they run around like crazy loons and even at nearly 2, DD is clearly the criminal mastermind and DS merely carries out her diabolical plans.

wheretoyougonow Mon 09-Feb-15 19:12:18

I have a 3 1/2 year age gap by circumstances beyond my control (wanted 18 months!)
I LOVE it! There is no way I would change it. My children are close enough to have a good friendship and similar interests. I had time to enjoy DS2 in his own right as DS1 was at pre school then school.
Please don't worry - it really isn't a big age gap and you might be glad you aren't dealing with two toddlers at the same time wink

Justguessing Mon 09-Feb-15 19:12:20

There's a 3.5 age gap between my two but the youngest is only 7 months so I can't comment on how well they play together. One big benefit of the gap so far though is that the eldest is now entitled to 15 hours funded childcare. That means I get 1-1 on time with the baby and the 3 year old burns off energy without me having to organise 101 activities.

The funding also means that we won't be completely financially crippled by having two kids in childcare when I go back to work.

I only have one in nappies.

The eldest is also a useful fetcher of nappy/wipe/other random items!

Hoppinggreen Mon 09-Feb-15 19:18:32

DS was born 1 week before DD 4th birthday.
The age gap works really well for us, DD was old enough to help and not be a danger to DS and she understood to a certain extent when I couldn't do certain things. She also mothered him quite a bit and he worships her.
It also mean that dd was at preschool 3 days a week so I had some 121 time with DS but if dd wanted to stay at home she could.
I wouldn't change the age gap at all

seaoflove Mon 09-Feb-15 19:22:46

Watching here. DD will be 3.8 when #2 arrives. Couldn't entertain the idea of having another baby any sooner. I'm still worried though, because DD isn't an easy child and she's already reacted pretty badly to the pregnancy (rejecting me, etc).

oobedobe Mon 09-Feb-15 19:22:59

I ended up with an unplanned 3.9 gap between my dd's (multiple mc) and I have found it great. DD1 and I had lots of time together just the two of us and when DD2 came along she was on her way to being more independent (dressing herself, potty trained, at pre-school). She went to school at 4 and that allowed me to focus on DD2 just as I had done with DD1.

They are now 6 and 2.7 and get along great - they like the same toys, tv shows, soft play etc - I do think things will change in the next year or two when DD1 gets a bit more tween and doesn't want to do/watch babyish things, but then I figure DD2 will probably grow up a little bit quicker and want to be like her older sister!

I don't think there are many downsides, sometimes it does feel like I have had a baby/toddler for a long time (over 6 years of going to baby groups etc), but DD2 will be 3 in the summer and off to pre-school in the Sept - so I am looking forward to moving out of this stage but also enjoying my last toddler cuddles as they grow so quick.

tomandizzymum Mon 09-Feb-15 19:28:25

I have gaps of 2 and a half years, 3 months off 4 years and 2 months of 3 years and I have to say I cannot get how people cope with less. You get time with each, while the older one gets independence, but the children are still close enough to have things in common. I have a 9 year gap between number 1 and number 4.

DaphneMoonCrane Mon 09-Feb-15 19:34:30

There's exactly 3.5 years between DS1 and DS2.

DS1 was at preschool so I had loads of one-to-one time with DS2. He was also old enough to understand most basic instructions though he didn't always follow them, dress himself etc.

He did get very tantrummy when DS2 first arrived, and he did try to squish/bash/poke him quite a lot, but now DS2 is 10 months and a bit more interactive, DS1 adores him and says he's his best friend smile Also, DS2 gives as good as he gets and just clonks DS1 one if he manhandles him wink

Zsazsabinks Mon 09-Feb-15 19:44:31

4.5 year, to the day, gap here and we love it. She understood everything that was going on when the new baby came so no difficulties there. They absolutely adore each other, so it's wonderful to watch. At 4(ish) the big one doesn't need your undivided attention but is starting to get independent which is perfect when the little one comes along and is attached to you for a year or so. Love that age gap.

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Mon 09-Feb-15 19:48:44

These are lovely, thank you so much.

Chippednailvarnish Mon 09-Feb-15 19:49:55

3.10 gap here.
They adore each other, no competitiveness between them and I wouldn't have it any other way!

HappyAsASandboy Mon 09-Feb-15 19:54:19

There's a 4 year 2 month gap between my twins and DC3. It is a brilliant (and planned!) age gap.

Me and my sister are 3yrs 6mo apart and it was a good gap growing up. We were far enough apart that there was little overlap in school stuff, friends, interests etc, which allowed us to watch have our own stuff without competition from the other sibling. Friends with smaller gaps to their sibling generally fought like cat and dog through school. As adults were really close.

Now I have 4 year old DC1 and DC2, and newborn DC3. The gap is brilliant - the older two are capable of waiting/fetching/listening etc and have shown no jealousy, presumably because they understand what I'm saying when I talk about why I need to spend time with the baby. They dote on their baby brother smile

In all, I think a 4 year gap works really well smile

BlanketSky Mon 09-Feb-15 22:26:15

3y4mo gap here. Dd is 9 months. It was very hard to start with (not helped by cs recovery) but they adore each other now. There are still some horrible days, but these are fewer and the good bits outweigh them. At nursery last week ds was asked (circle time I think) what makes him happy, he said dd smile

readyforno2 Mon 09-Feb-15 22:34:11

Just over 5 years age gap here.
It's really good. Ds1 is mostly very patient with ds2. But ds2 2yr 8mo and pretty annoying!
4 days after ds2 was born dh left to go to work for 4 weeks. It was hard obviously but I couldn't have done it without ds1. He would sit and hold his brother while I cooked dinner etc.
Also, ds1 started school not long after ds2 was born so it meant I got to spend baby time with ds2 without feeling guilty.
I always thought I would have a much smaller age gap between dc but I would not change it now. I'm a firm believer in things happening for a reason. Good luck op

mamadoc Mon 09-Feb-15 22:54:53

4.2y gap here.

Older DD, younger DS

Not my plan at all. I wanted 2 little girls 18 months apart just like my and my sister but multiple miscarriages put paid to that.

It worked out really well anyway.
DD was more independent; toilet trained, sleeping reliably, could dress herself, play independently so that made it easier to cope with 2.
Also she could understand being asked to wait a bit whilst I dealt with the baby and know that her turn would come.

She had just started school so I was on mat leave for most of her 1st year which was lovely for her and for me. I got to know the school mums better than if I was at work. Some of them had little babies too so ready made friendships. Plus I still got to 'nap when the baby naps' as she was at school.

They do play nicely together despite the age gap (and fight at times too). You can't treat them just the same as that would be silly. They are at different stages and have different interests but some things they share and enjoy together; they build Lego models together and make dens and pretend shops and they both like Scooby Doo and Horrible Histories.

She is protective of him and likes to read to him and explain to him how the world works. He looks up to her and copies things she does and he is much more independent because of her example.

And finally this is the clincher; at weekends I am working on training her to make him breakfast as well as her own so we can get a lie in!

anothernumberone Mon 09-Feb-15 22:58:33

3.7 and 3 year age gaps here. Dd1 and dd2 don't get on great but dd2 and ds play nicely together. I found it easier having an older child rather than 2 in nappies. All in all I was happy with the gaps.

Harverina Mon 09-Feb-15 23:17:21

There is 3 years 7 months between my DD's and for us it was perfect for the following reasons:

- DD1 had started preschool a few months before and was settled by the the dd2 came along. It gave dd1 a seperate focus, time away from her new baby sister and also meant that dd2 and I could go to morning groups or have some snuggle time without me worrying about dd1 feeling left out or needing occupied.

- dd1 has been absolutely amazing. She is gentle, kind and caring towards her sister. Because she understood more we were able to prepare her for the baby coming along.

- by 3.7 dd1 was fully toilet trained and able to go to the toilet independently. This made life so much easier.

- dd1 understood I needed to sit for lengthy periods and bf dd2.

- when we went out dd1 was able to walk nicely by the pram. I didn't have the worry of a tiny toddler running off etc.

- we didn't need a double buggy!

There Are probably more reasons that I can't think of but I would highly recommend a similar age gap. For us it was absolutely perfect. I know friends with a closer gap of around 2 years struggled. It is quite an awkward age in terms of comprehension and crucial for potty training etc.

But maybe I am biased because it worked so well for us blush

Harverina Mon 09-Feb-15 23:20:20

Ah yes dd1 is very patient and will sit with dd2 and teach her things like stacking, puzzles etc.

eastmidswarwicknightnanny Tue 10-Feb-15 05:47:43

I have a 4yr old n a 11week old, ds1 turned 4 in Aug n baby born Nov, ds1 is pretty independent he can wait for things, play by himself, loves helping by putting nappies in bin, singing to his brother while I pop dinner on.

Ds1 is also at school so get daytime with ds2 although being up n ready for school run was a pain initially it's just part routine now, days seem shorter as have school run in afternoon too.

Sometimes I think ds1 misses out on my attention coz of bf n then lack sleep but he says he is ok and actually is happy doing craft, playing, watching tv.

I try to spend time with ds1 after school n in hols when ds2 naps so usual do a cooking activity like making pizza or flapjack or cakes as I like cooking as does he n we have a useful end product.

At weekends DH does alot with ds1 although now ds2 is almost 3mths he doesn't constantly feed we do a bit more family stuff.

Also when I go back to work we will have childcare all day for one n then around school for other we couldn't have afforded 2 in all day childcare.

TheRestofmylifeiswaiting Tue 10-Feb-15 05:56:47

I have two x 3 year gaps between my 3 children's. 3 years three weeks between DD1 and DD2, 3 years 6 months between DD2 and DD3. I love it as three is a magical age when they get so interesting and start pre school and those little steps towards growing up, you have someone to talk to as well as the baby, love a pre schooler's chatter, old enough to be so excited and proud of their new baby and help you out with little things like fetching a nappy, and close enough to play together without competition. Most importantly they follow some instruction and will be potty trained or nearly and that just makes life so much easier. My nearly 8 and nearly 5 yr old have played together well for ages, and my youngest is now 16 months and has a lovely giggly time with her sisters. I looked at so many friends with a two or less age gap and thought it looked like such hard work, toddler running in one direction, baby crying, ugh. My only regret is having three children with a 3+ age gap has spread my years with a baby/under 3 out for a looooong time and I am looking forward to them all being over 3 and having more civilised days out.

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