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Four year age gap between children - what's it like?

(13 Posts)
Maz2444466 Mon 03-Oct-16 19:14:21

We are looking at a minimum of a four year age gap between DC. Is this a good age gap? I know there are a zillion other factors to consider but was curious to know your experiences...

Thanks! smile

Jenijena Mon 03-Oct-16 19:19:50

We have seven weeks less than four years between our two. Youngest is only six months so not exactly experienced but pros include the older one has a bit more patience and understanding, and likes the baby rather than seeing it as competition. They're also quite distinct individuals - I can't imagine they'll end up getting the same birthday presents, as my sister and I used to do (2 year gap). And just as my elder becomes a mardy schoolboy I get all the baby fun stuff again.

On the cons side, we had left much of babyneas behind, and it's a shock to be back here. And crawling and Lego are difficult things to negotiate in shared space!

CharleyDavidson Mon 03-Oct-16 19:20:59

We have a gap just under 4 years for our DDs. Basically, we worked back from when DD1 would be going into full time school when we planned DC2 to avoid 2 in full time childcare.

It worked for us. DD1 went into nursery in Sept and DD2 was born in Oct, so I had some 1-to-1 time with the baby while DD1 was in nursery. And we asked for pm nursery to avoid hectic mornings while we could.

They were never in the same key stage as each other in school, so didn't have too much time together at school. And DD2 has just started high school and is glad that DD1 is still there for one more year before she leaves - no 6th form provision at our local high school.

They do irritate and annoy each other a bit. And I'd like them to be closer. But then, out of nowhere, they'll be chatting and giggling away with each other.

FlopIsMyParentingGuru Mon 03-Oct-16 19:31:36

Four and a half years between my two. They obviously have their moments but generally adore each other and the age gap means they aren't In competition with each other. It's such a privilege to see how loyal they are to each other and the friendship they have now at 4 and 8

QuackDuckQuack Mon 03-Oct-16 19:39:04

We have 4 years and it's going really well (neatly 2 years in). DD2 is getting a little more demanding, with some 'mine's thrown in, so DD1 can't get away with as much as she could. But they love chasing each other about.

madmother1 Mon 03-Oct-16 19:40:46

16 and 20 now. It's never been a problem smile

kavvLar Mon 03-Oct-16 19:42:15

We have three years nine months gap here. I like it. Eldest was old enough to understand / help out, maternity leave coincided with eldest starting reception so I was able to do school run/ school gate and get to know other parents. Also was like having my time again with a small baby I could do baby classes etc and we only had to pay for one set of childcare at a time.

Cons are that you are just getting out of the baby stage and you are launched back into it, you have to fit baby / toddler to older child's schedule rather than going with the flow, older children have small and deadly toys which baby can easily get hold of, and it is sometimes hard to find activities that are age appropriate for both, as the little one grows into things just as the eldest tires of it.

That being said, I'm a huge fan of this gap. They are great pals now (6 and 2) It's worked really well for us and I know I would have gone under if I'd had two in rapid succession.

kiki22 Mon 03-Oct-16 19:45:58

I'm 6 weeks in with a 4.5 year age gap the baby has been crying since 3.30 with reflux thankfully my oldest played out with his friend in the garden then got himself changed for bed and has been watching Netflix I can not imagine how I would do evenings like this with a younger child. I'm glad I left it until he started school its meant hes out busy in the day and old enough to understand why the baby needs seen to.

Ds2 smiled today for the first time which delighted ds1 its was lovely to watch ds1 try to get smiles and the look on his face when he got one.

Maz2444466 Mon 03-Oct-16 19:55:29

Such lovely messages, it's only now that DS is nearly three that I am beginning to feel ready and actually pining for another! It's nice to know that they can still play well together despite the age difference....

QuackDuckQuack Mon 03-Oct-16 20:01:36

That's exactly why we ended up with that age gap. I always thought we'd have 2 in 2 years like lots of people do. But we couldn't even contemplate another when DD1 had just turned 1. Having one who was toilet trained (and unlikely to regress), settled at nursery and reasonably self sufficient was great. Being on maternity leave when she started reception was a bonus.

JellyWitch Mon 03-Oct-16 20:05:29

Mine are 4.5 years apart (6 & 2) and play together and fight together just as well as if they were closer in age I reckon. The little one copies the big one a lot.

Love that I was on mat leave when #1 started school. Also that the biggest gets himself dressed, washed etc can make simple food, reads stories to his younger sibling. All helps. Any closer together and I would have gone under I think!

MissCalamity Mon 03-Oct-16 21:03:15

4y4m here. Same reasons as the other posters. DC1 was more patient, not jealous of his younger sister & was in pre-school school 2.5 days per week, before starting reception.
He could do a lot of things himself & wasn't constantly relying on me.
Now at 6 & 2, they can play together but ds gets bored quickly. DD does wind him up in that annoying little sister way wink
I did want a smaller age gap, but DP wasn't keen at the time, in the end it's worked out well!
Good luck!

kiki22 Mon 03-Oct-16 21:13:31

Just to add I've just come out of the bath to find ds1 sleeping in my bed with his hand on ds2s tummy (in the co sleeper) when asked what he was doing he gave me a sleepy smile and said he missed his baby. My hearts melted with that one smile

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