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How do you know when it is time to stop having babies?

(65 Posts)
reindeermum Sat 30-Jun-07 15:19:24

How do you know when your family is complete?

I am age 36 and pg with 4th child. Children are boy (6), girl (4) and boy (2). Child 4 is another boy due in Sept.

I am already broody for child 5. (I know this is ridiculous when I haven’t even had number 4 yet!) I absolutely love having babies and cannot bear the thought that at some point I will have to stop. I definitely do not want to still be having them in my 40’s, so would like to go for number 5 soon after number 4. Would also like to try for a girl next time using the Shettles/timing method (was planning to do this for this pregnancy, but jumped ahead too far in the month in my eagerness to get preggers.)

How did you know when your family was complete and your children were all there? How on earth do you go about making this decision ? And when you do, do you suddenly feel middle aged (horrible thought!)?

Is anyone else in the world as obsessed with having babies as me or do I have a hormone imbalance???

kittywits Sat 30-Jun-07 16:30:21

Hi, I've just had my 6th. I knew just after no. 5 that I hadn't finished. Now with 6 I know that I couldn't do any more. I am finding it very hard with 6 kids age 8 and under.
I also know that I couldn't stretch myself to give any more decent mothering time to each individual child if I had more. My children have alot of input from other adults, grandpraents and dp works from home.
Strangely though I did dream last night about not being preg ever again and it did make me sad, but only in my dream. When I woke I knew I couldn't do it again. Since 1998 I've had 12 pregs, 6 mc's and 6 children.
It's hard to close the door though.
Now's the time to concentrate on drinking wine!!!

CarGirl Sat 30-Jun-07 16:32:48

After the 4th I just knew that I'd had enough, I'm sad to think I'll never be pregnant again but coping with just 3 and under plus an older one is very difficult plus we've run out of room in our cosy house!

manuka Sat 30-Jun-07 17:03:01

Oh my god!!!!! I would HATE to be pregnant again! I'm going to get my tubes removed and I've only got one child!!!!!!

reindeermum Sat 30-Jun-07 17:54:30

Kittywits - how old were you when you had number 6? Do you think I have got time for 2 more before I'm 40? It is interesting what you say about knowing you had not finished yet after number 5, as that is just how I feel. A lot of my friends knew clearly after number 2 that that was that and gave away all the baby stuff etc, but I can't imagine EVER feeling like that!! (Even on days when I am absolutely knackered with it all and they are all screaming)

juuule Sat 30-Jun-07 18:19:50

The feeling has only subsided in the past couple of years for me. It hasn't gone completely although I am totally content with the children I have. I have 9 children and have had 8 m/cs. I had my 1st baby at 27 and my 9th 3 months before my 44th birthday. So you have lots of time yet I am acknowledging my age now, I have not got much choice as menopause is making itself known. I thought I would be upset but I'm not. I feel it is time to move on. I do think the feeling is probably related to hormones.

reindeermum Sat 30-Jun-07 18:33:07

Respect for having NINE!!!!!

I think I must have too many of those hormones you talk about.....

Question for both Kittywits and Juuule - was your dh/dp with you all the way on having so many or did you have a lot of persuading to do?

juuule Sat 30-Jun-07 18:37:08

There was some persuading to be done. He would have stopped at any point. But he wouldn't have sent any of them back once they were here.

lou33 Sat 30-Jun-07 18:43:15

when i cried at finding out i was pg, and it wasnt from happiness

tortoise Sat 30-Jun-07 18:43:48

I have 4 DC. 10,7,2 and 4.
I am a single mum and really feel i would like more children one day(Not right now but in the future.) and hope i get the chance to. I am 29 so hopefully have time to have more one day. Maybe as i get older i will change my mind.

Now someone find me a man!

kittywits Sat 30-Jun-07 18:43:49

Reindeer. I had ds1 at 30 and ds3 at 39, so you've got time if you knock 'em out quickly!!!

Actually dp took a bit of persauding for no 5 but not for no 6. He wants to stop now as he is knackered and poor , but I think he would let me carry on if I wanted to.

reindeermum Sat 30-Jun-07 19:09:19

Kittywits you are my childbearing icon! I also started when I was 30 and am just 2 kids and 4 years behind you!

My dh also took a LOT of persuading to have no 4, but as I am now already talking about no 5, I think he is starting to realise he is fighting a losing battle as i feel so strongly about it. He would quite happily have stopped at 2 like normal people (!)

Juuule - Was having so many at all related to wanting a balance of both sexes or did you just always want lots?

juuule Sat 30-Jun-07 19:13:58

Seemed to keep wanting 'just one more'

My children are b(20), b(17), g(16), b(14), g(12), g(10), g(9), g(7), g(4). So had both sexes by baby3 and 3 of each by baby6 Nothing to do with going after a particular gender.

kittywits Sat 30-Jun-07 20:22:04

reindeer, I have three of each boy 8, boy, 7, girl 5, girl 3, girl 18 months, boy 3 months.Good luck with it all

reindeermum Sat 30-Jun-07 21:15:12

Do you think the reason you had six was to get three of each or did you really really really not mind? Would you have been tempted to carry on if the last one was another girl?(I would really like another girl ideally which I do admit is PART of the reason for having more although obviously they are all brilliant and I am very very grateful whatever he/she might be.)

(it has been lovely to read that other people are as barking as me....)

juuule Sat 30-Jun-07 21:38:48

For myself, having gone through the upset of the m/cs, it really didn't matter what the sex of the baby was as long as the pregnancy ended with a live baby. Although I will say that having at least one of each sex is the icing on the cake.

friendly Sat 30-Jun-07 21:54:11

Reindeermum - I understand completely. I am 37 and have 5 children, boy (9) girl (7) boy (5) boy (3) and boy (nearly 1). They are a feisty bunch and hard work and although I wouldn't swap any of my boys for a girl, I cannot honestly say that I am finished as I would love another girl. My mother would swat me now if she read this. I wonder if it is my imbalanced family that makes me want to go on. I too intended to try the Shettles method, in fact I had just found the book in a second hand shop when I realised I was expecting my ds5.

I sometimes lie in bed at night thinking about another baby and my motives for having one. I was disappointed when I found out that ds was a boy although I think he's absolutely scrumptious now and I know I would feel the same if it happened again, only initially (Heaven help dd). I don't know how long you can go on.

I do remember seeing a programme a few years ago about a woman obsessed with having babies. She had been married since she was about 20 and had 14 or 15 children. I think she had g g and then about 6 boys and thought she'd never have a girl again and then had a run of 7 girls. Goodness knows the state of her pelvic floor! I had four at the time and was amazed and in awe. I do remember thinking she had rather dodgy car arrangements and the food was a bit school canteen but she was very loving. Most of them only wanted 1 or 2 kids or none!

I do worry about having enough time for all of mine. I have also become the parent in school that used to exasperate me when I taught, with the late trip money/ notes/ homework and I definitely need another pair of ears or maybe some earplugs

Lio Sat 30-Jun-07 21:57:06

I am so sure that I don't want any more that even in dreams I won't have sex without a condom, even with (oh god, please don't judge me) the short one off Top Gear

flibbertyjibbet Sat 30-Jun-07 22:13:28

I think each person just knows when they have completed their family. After DS1 I knew I needed another baby, since DS2 I have not had one single broody nanosecond. So for us it was two. For some people its one. For my younger sister it was 6!!

Biglips Sat 30-Jun-07 22:16:31

ive only got one dd who is 2 and in the back of my mind ive always wanted 2...no more else

Does it work like that?....just thinking "Im just having 2"!!!

PregnantGrrrl Sat 30-Jun-07 22:30:58

This is definately my last pregnancy- DS2 due in October. However, i do have a strong feeling that 3 is the right number for us, and i hope to adopt (or even foster) in a few years time. It's just instinct really, that 3 is the right figure for us.

kittywits Sat 30-Jun-07 22:35:23

Reindeer, I was always very pleased when I found out I was having another girl. I have enjoyed my girls I must say, although I'm sure it will be pay back time come the teens. When I found out the last one was a boy I was a bit shocked. As Juule says though I was so pleased to be having a healthy preg that at the end of the day it did not matter.

reindeermum Sun 01-Jul-07 15:05:44

friendly - you definitely sound like you haven't finished yet either. Before I got preggers with this one I just felt like someone was missing the whole time and I knew, as Kittywits and Juuule did that I just wasn't finished yet. Good luck - go for it!

evenhope Sun 01-Jul-07 15:37:57

After we had the 4th I knew I hadn't got the time or energy for any more, but there was always that feeling that someone was missing. Having just had a "surprise" 5th 3 months ago I find I'm thinking about one more... (DH is horrified at the thought)

TenaLady Sun 01-Jul-07 15:40:42

Simply when you cant afford to have anymore!

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