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TELL THE TRUTH, how hard is it to raise two kids under 3?

(59 Posts)
mamadadawahwah Wed 16-Mar-05 16:22:05

Being broody again and fast approaching the cut off date for more kids. Already have a two year old, just how hard is it really, to cope with a new pregnancy and new baby, when you already have a toddler? Does age make a diff or is just plain hard?

nailpolish Wed 16-Mar-05 16:29:23


ive got a 2.5 yr old and a 5 mth old

the pg was hard when alone with dd1 cos she likes getting picked up etc. i was tired through the day, and couldnt just kip on the couch like i did with 1st pg. some days i wanted to laze around the house but you just cant.

now i have both of them here, its not as hard as i thought i would be, the night feeds were a breeze really, cos i have a dd1 that goes to bed no prob and has a long lie in sometimes

it hard to get out and about, you get used to just getting in the car and dd1 walking, then you have to go back to carrying nappies, a buggy and a toddler. you cant do things like swimming any more, unless you have someone with you

its so difficult pushing a buggy with one hand cos dd1 wants to walk alongside you and to hold your hand

if they both need your attention at the same time you want to cut yourself in half

they never have a nap at the same time

you seem to have double the amount of washing

on the plus side, there is nothing better than seeing dd2 laughing and giggling with dd1, even at this age they are the best of friends and i am so glad i took the plunge and had them 2 yrs apart

bathtime is the funniest

good luck!

lockets Wed 16-Mar-05 16:30:59

Message withdrawn

ZoeB Wed 16-Mar-05 16:31:36

ditto nailpolish mine are 3 and 8 months it is very hard somedays and a breeze others you just have to go with flow.

Preggars Wed 16-Mar-05 16:41:11

Hi mamadadawahwah

I'm expecting no.2, and already have a 2 year old. I will let you know in a few months time!!

I've heard it's not as hard as the first (am hoping anyway!!).

cornishbird Wed 16-Mar-05 16:42:59

Have got one nearly 2 year old boy and 3 month girl. Spent most of pregnancy terrified that I wouldn't cope with two and if we'd done it too soon! Pg was ok, although obviusly couldn't get as much rest second time! I found the first few weeks with 2 really hard but 3 months in things are getting a lot easier, still have bad days but more good than bad, and most of all I'M COPING! I think it really depends a lot on your toddler. Mine sleeps for a good couple of hours in the day which is a HUGE blessing! We also tried to prepare him as much as poss, although only being 1.5 yrs he definately understood what was happening!
Be prepared to have absolutely no time to yourself in the beginning though,I do feel that am torn between them sometimes although I'm sure that will ease when baby active!
Overall would definately reccomend it!!! Hope this helps!! Good luck...

Gobbledigook Wed 16-Mar-05 16:43:08

It's hard work but it's fine. When I had ds3 last August I also had a 3 yr old and 22 month old so I had 3 of 3 and under!

I love having them all close together and though it's hectic, hectic and no time to sit down, I wouldn't change it for the world!

zubb Wed 16-Mar-05 16:43:25

ds1 was 22 months when ds2 arrived. The pregnancy was fine but I seem to have easy pregnancies anyway so maybe thats just luck. Ds2 just fitted into our lives really well. Like np nights were fine as ds1 sleeps well, and ds2 slept well quite quickly.
I did keep ds1 at his childminder while I was on maternity leave so that I could spend the time with ds2 and that worked well - no jealousy at all from ds1, and I made sure that I spent time with him on his own anyway.
Ds1 took to ds2 straight away and would sit down trying to make him smile. Now they play really well together (ds1 is 3, and ds2 15 months) and run round the house after each other laughing - it's lovely.
Ds2 will be 22 months when the next one arrives so its obviously not put me off! Now, 3 under 4 might be more of a challenge!

Tetley Wed 16-Mar-05 16:46:24

I've got a 2 year gap between my two (both boys). I found that the shock of dealing with a baby wasn't anywhere near as bad 2nd time around. However, you do feel like you're juggling a lot of the time.

I certainly wouldn't have wanted a bigger gap, as at least I was still used to dealing with baby stuff & hadn't forgotten what to do IYKWIM!

I think that it definately isn't double the work - more like x 1.5. You just have to get on with it. Some days they play really well together so life is easy & other days they just seem to permanently fight.

It gets easier as your eldest gets more independant. Ds1 is now 4 1/2 so can put his own shoes & coat on etc, so it's a lot easier to get out of the house.

I think you should go for it - you'll regret it if you don't

Cha Wed 16-Mar-05 16:49:05

You want the truth? It's deathly. First six months anyway. No sleep, mucho stress, a lot of screaming (you and kids), no sleep, too many meals to prepare, too many nappies to change, no sleep, terrible twos and tantrums, teething x 2, no sleep, house a tip, covered in sick, no sleep, too tired for sex, dp grumpy without it, no sleep, no going out, no sleeping in, no sleep. I am never doing it again, that's for sure. Then, almost imperceptibly, at about the age the little one can sit up and entertain itself for more than three seconds, it starts to get better. And better and better and you almost forget how awful it all was. Almost.

There is 22 months between my two and at 3 and 18 months they are the best of friends, so in my case it was worth it. Just.

zippy539 Wed 16-Mar-05 16:52:00

Agree with everything Tetley just said - def 1.5 times the work rather than double. Mine are 3.5 and 1.5 and it has got much easier recently (except for having to break up all the fights ) . When DS started nursery 5 mornings a week that made a HUGE difference - i could enjoy dd and get out and about much easier. Yes - it is chaos at times, but personally I would rather compress all the chaos into a few short years than wait until life was nearly back to normal before introducing another little bundle of joy . Go for it.

nailpolish Wed 16-Mar-05 16:55:12

like zubb i still took dd1 to cm when i was on mat leave, it gave me time to get to know dd2 and it kept dd1's routine as normal as poss.

when dd2 was born we told her she now had a baby sister of her very own, and she still tells people 'thats my baby sister' with her chest out all proud

ill never forget the minute she came to visit in hospital - all crying cos she was so excited

she still gets excited when she hears dd2 wake from her nap, practically hauls me out of the chair/off the floor to go get her!

clary Wed 16-Mar-05 16:55:25

mamadada do you have any childcare in place (because of working eg)? I ask because I found jump from 1 to 2 harder (bizarre!) than 2 to 3 and I think that was partly because I kept my part-time childminder going although I was off. This gave me a break from all 3 at once and time with the new baby. In the end cm had to stop (she had a new baby) and I did have all 3 at home but by then DS1 was at school so no probs really.
Echo what others have said (tho don’t agree with np re swimming - I take all my three!). The trick is to have some time on yr own with each child, which if you do pre-school with the older one and then the baby has a nap in the afternoon eg is no problem.
Lots of laundry and a feeling sometimes that you need to be in six places at once.
I looooove beign a mum of lots of children, it’s just fantastic. My older 2 play togeteher so well and all 3 of us play games and do stuff together and it’s just fab!

mumbojumbo Wed 16-Mar-05 16:55:52

Agree with everything! Cha has put it very well! Mine are 3 and 16 months and I can't deny it's been tough. However, seeing them play together now is lovely and makes it worthwhile. I had PND with ds2 which added to the stress.

nailpolish Wed 16-Mar-05 16:56:52

clary, by law here you have to have 1 to 1 with children under 4, so thats why i cant take both dd's on my own

clary Wed 16-Mar-05 16:57:00

btw cha, sorry to hear you found it so hard. Have to say I have had 3 good sleepers which I am well aware makes so much differnece.

aloha Wed 16-Mar-05 16:59:06

What is the 'cut off date' for more kids??? I have to say, I am glad I have a three and a half year age gap (and a 13 year one!!), but it is a very personal decision. TBH if we won the lottery and I had a maternity nurse and nanny, I might be tempted to have another, but that's the only way I'd persuade dh and also not be left in poverty in the gutter!

motherinferior Wed 16-Mar-05 16:59:36


love it!

I haven't found it as awful all the way along but the first six months, IMO are a ghastly return to days swore never to repeat...

clary Wed 16-Mar-05 17:00:07

np (sorry shd read thread before posting) that's crap that you have to have 1 to 1 for swimming. how are you supposed to take em? You can have 3 under 8 to one adult in our teachign pool, providing one is over 4 or maybe 5.
Actually before anyone jumps on me I don't take all of them that often, ds1 does lessons and then comes with me after school one day, dd and ds2 come with me to a saturday toddler class.

elliott Wed 16-Mar-05 17:00:18

clary I find it impossible to have time with each of them on their own. they both sleep at about the same time and apart from that they are both around...
My take is that its hard at first but that isn't a reason not to do it! Hardest things are tiredness (my two seem to alternate having bad patches, though neither of them is dreadful it still adds up to more broken sleep than with just one), and never feeling like you can give each of them proper attention. And lots more laundry and cooking. Mine are 15 months and 3 yrs 3 months now. It has been easier since the little one has been self feeding!

motherinferior Wed 16-Mar-05 17:00:21

sworn I mean.

clary Wed 16-Mar-05 17:05:28

elliott but doesn't yr older one do pre-school?
TBH with 3 I just try to remove one from the equation now and then, eg ds2 asleep, DS1 out for a walk with daddy etc.
Anyway, if they nap at the same time at least you can get a rest too!
Recall one magic moment when all 3 of mine were asleep (? not sure why 4yo ds1 was still having a nap but for some reason he did that day) - I sat in the living room unsure of what I should be doing!! very weird.

nailpolish Wed 16-Mar-05 17:07:32

clary - lol! i know that feeling, you sort of wander around the house feeling lost, not quite knowing what to do, although for you it must be rarer than with me

KathH Wed 16-Mar-05 17:08:32

with my middle 2 it was a lot easier than i thought - dd2 was 2 and 3 mths when ds1 was born. at 2 and a bit she hadnt learnt to be really naughty yet but she could do little things to help and they've always been really close.

PrettyCandles Wed 16-Mar-05 17:08:56

It's just plain hard, I think. Looking back, I think the first 18m were the toughest with both children. And until no2 dropped the morning nap and got her pm nap into synch with no1's life was a continuous round of put-one-down-pick-one-up and feed-nap-feed-nap-feed-nap. But mdw, your no1 would be nearly 3 when your no2 would be born, and that's a whole different kettle of fish to having a 2yo and a newborn. Anyway, go for it if that's what you want - the hardwork is doubled, but the joy is quadrupled .

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