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Mums of four?

(72 Posts)
Gillian76 Wed 08-Jun-05 13:51:30

I'm looking for some advice from any mums of 4 (or more!)

We have 3 children DD1 aged 5 DD2 will be 4 in Sept and DS 2 next month. After DS I thought I was finished but more and more am thinking, "well, maybe..."

I found it OK going from 1 to 2 children but quite difficult from 2 to 3. I am worried I'd find it difficult to cope with 4. How do you find life with 4 children?

DD1 will be starting school in August, DD2's at nursery in the mornings. Was thinking about planning for Aug or Sept next year when DS will start nursery too.

Am I mad???

toomanypushchairs Wed 08-Jun-05 13:53:14

yes you're mad! have dd10 ds7 1/2 dt's 2 1/2.
all I can say is aargh!
am sure some will say its wonderful, they lie!

oliveoil Wed 08-Jun-05 13:57:10

My friend has 4, aged about 7, 5, 3 and a newborn. She said going from 1 to 2 was the worst but you don't really notice the extra work from then on . Apart from the newborn stage obviously when you have no sleep.

Her house is always a tip though with toys everywhere and she says she spends her life running round after everyone. And the school/nursery run can be a mare. But she loves it and wouldn't have it any other way.

Gillian76 Wed 08-Jun-05 13:57:53

Oh dear. That bad? But twins must make it more hectic surely?

Gillian76 Wed 08-Jun-05 13:58:41

Also being pregnant and running around after 3 worries me a bit!

toomanypushchairs Wed 08-Jun-05 14:01:50

it is probably the twin thing. I'm sure 1 baby would have fitted in quite easily. My sister Xena(she posts on mumsnet) wants a 4th. I tried to say she's mad but she still wants another. maybe you'd be ok while pregnant as one of yours will be at school all day, and another at nursery, so there will only be one little one for 1/2 the time! can the youngest sleep while the other is at nursery and you could rest then?

toomanypushchairs Wed 08-Jun-05 14:03:02

sorry have to go and wake up dt's. am sure if you really want other you won;t be put off by me!
talk to marslady. she has 5, the youngest 2 being twins!

Xena Wed 08-Jun-05 14:09:28

Hello Gillian, I think that to have a large family you need to beable to cope with chaos or run a tight ship. Toomanys house is of the chaotic variety and she likes neat and clean children. Another is that we grew up in a family with 4 siblings and as adult I only get on with 1 of them.

Lonelymum Wed 08-Jun-05 14:12:03

I have 4 Gillian and I would say, if you want 4 go for it. The only thing you may have to change is your car. We bought a Chrysler Grand Voyager (the most enormous people carrier on the road) which was pricey, but it is our great joy as it is so roomy and we still have room to transport one other person (though not baby No5!)
Mine are aged nearly 9, 7, 5, and 2.4

Gillian76 Wed 08-Jun-05 14:31:24

We have a rather old Volkswagen Sharan at the moment, but plan to replace it with a similar sized, newer vehicle around Christmas. We are too used to the space!

gaelsgirl Wed 08-Jun-05 16:48:37

I find it really hard having 4, and expensive on days out.

MarsLady Wed 08-Jun-05 16:50:16

Go girl!!!!!!!!!!! It's wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!!

Gillian76 Wed 08-Jun-05 17:02:28

Hard, how gaelsgirl?

ML - what ages are yours? You sound ver positive about the whole experience!

gaelsgirl Wed 08-Jun-05 17:07:08

mine are 13,8,6,4, 2 of each

i find it hard to spend enough time with any of them, i have no privacy, there is loads of noise all the time, someone always need attention, days out turn into army manoeuvres, babysitters don't exist, bigger car, food bill, so much mess all the time......

MarsLady Wed 08-Jun-05 17:09:21

DS1 (12) DD1 (10) DD2 (6) and the DTs (15months).

Of course it's hard work, but then so is one. It depends and what you want for yourself. If you want easy, nothing to do etc, then kids are not the way to go. I do it all by not setting myself impossible standards. So what if the house isn't 100% clean, 100% of the time (it is on a Tuesday when the cleaner comes). Run a tight ship. Give the kids jobs as they are old enough (which I think that people should do regardless of how many they have), and don't pay them. It's all part of being a family. If everyone pulls their weight then it's easy.

I spend a lot of time doing the things that I like. I'm not big on baby groups but I go once a week. I have lunch with friends once a week, visit friends, have friends over 2-3 times a week.

We regularly have friends over to play. Lots of noise and laughter. We have good babysitters so that DH and I can go out regularly.

We love it and wouldn't have it any other way.

gaelsgirl Wed 08-Jun-05 17:13:53

i must be the only one who isn't cut out for large families then!

MarsLady Wed 08-Jun-05 17:18:27

no, I'm sure there are others. You may just be a late developer and really come into your own when they are older (and I may have given up lol)

Pollyanna Wed 08-Jun-05 18:25:48

I agree with Gaelsgirl I'm afraid. I don't regret having four, but it is hard. (no 4 wasn't planned). Mine are 6, 4, 2 and 5 months. It is sooo chaotic, loud and messy in my house (I am quite anal and I find this difficult to accept), they have no one-to-one time with me, it is expensive and hard work and I spend my life on school/nursery runs. The washing machine is nearly constant, as is the bickering. The upside is that they all get on well and play really nicely (when they're not bickering) and they'll never be lonely.

I too found it hardest going from 2 to 3 (going to 4 wasn't as difficult really), but the drudgery has increased alot as a result of having a new baby.

It might make a difference if your dh is going to be around quite a bit to help. Mine doesn't get home in the evenings until after they're in bed - and the time from tea onwards is very tough. Also I have 2 children at home at the moment - my 2 yo doesn't start nursery until Sept, I'm hoping it will be easier when I've got 2 at school,one at nursery and only the baby at home.

Sorry to be down on this - it has been a hard day today! At other times I am much more positive.

beckymumof3 Wed 08-Jun-05 19:01:36

Is having 4 that different from 3? I am expecting no.4 near Xmas and am hoping its no great shakes. I didn't find it that different going from 2 to 3 and they were only 12months apart so hoping for same again....? Am I being over optomistic?

Shame about the blasted car though - we really can't afford a big one so god knows what we'll do.

also, once you get over the '2adults, 2kids' "family" everything is dead expensive anyway so we are kind of used to it..? naiive? Hope not just lovely pregnancy hormones making me think it will all be wonderful....

beckymumof3 Wed 08-Jun-05 19:02:45

It probably helps not being to anal - and also I will have the luxury of 3 children in full time school when I have this one... hmmm

Lonelymum Wed 08-Jun-05 19:41:05

I have found on a number of occasions lately that a family ticket these days covers 2 adults and 3 children (I am sure it used to be only 2 children). Also, depending on what you are doing, children under 5 are often free. The upshot of this for us is that we get by on a family ticket still which is often litlle more expensive than it would be to pay for 2 adults and 2 children separately. Also, if we eat out (joke!) the 2 youngest share a meal still so we only pay for five meals. I am sure these advantages won't last for much longer, but, at the moment, I don't find taking 4 children out too expensive.

It is interesting reading other people's perspectives on this issue though. I don't find the mess or the noise hard to deal with, or the washing or cleaning, but I am conscious that I don't have time to give each child much individual attention every day. Also, more exciting holidays are out of the question which makes me a bit sad.

compo Wed 08-Jun-05 19:44:34

Just to put another persepctive on things - I only have one atm but I'm the youngest of four. I wouldn't consider more than two but I can tell you the difference btw my mum and me - she seems much more laidback, easy going, doesn't get stressed as much and is VERY organised. I think that i how she was able to cope with a nine year old and 3 under 5 whereas I would have been a nervous wreck!!

tabitha Wed 08-Jun-05 19:59:07

I have 4 aged 18, 14, 7 & 1.
I found going from 1 to 2 a real shock to the system; going from 2 to 3 a dawdle and going from 3 to 4 much harder than I thought it would be but I think that a lott of that was to do with having two stroppy teenagers and a new baby. Also, baby no 4 was not an 'easy' baby (she's lovely now most of the time btw) whereas baby no 3 was. So a lot of it being hard was due to my individual circumstances.
Obviously, things can be pretty chaotic but in the end we manage and I do really enjoy having 4 kids. So, no you're not mad and if that's what you want go for it.

beetroot Wed 08-Jun-05 20:02:06

Message withdrawn

kath4kids Thu 09-Jun-05 10:16:35

We have four dd 13 in july dd11 dd 28 months that took 5 years of trying for and ds14 months the surprise package.

Yes the house is always messy, the washer always on, always clothes to put away. The house is never quiet.

The older two always bicker.

It's not the babies that make days out expensive its the older two, had to pay adult prices at disney and parc asterix this year for the older one and she wants adult meals when we go out.

Clothes and shoes are expensive. but hey that would be the same if only three or two of them.

Think it depends as well whether you have to go out to work and how much dh helps out.

As for the pregnancy thing i think you just get on with it. dd was only 5 months old when i got pregnant again, although i was devestated as i already had a baby and didnt want another one i think i breezed through, yes i was tired but not as bad as time before actually, maybe that was because i was in denial. (who knows)

I's actually dh that is having more difficulty in dealing with it all at the moment, says house is always noisey and explodes at the slightest thing.

But they are precious and i'm sure you'll cope. God for it their a joy but be prepared for everything to be manic unless you are organised which i'm not

Also another thing that is difficult is that hotel rooms are usually for four, you dont often find a table for 6 in a cafe, services etc.

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