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To have 4 children

36 replies

theWomenInTheWoods · 23/08/2015 20:08

I'm 36 and have 2 DCs

I really want another DC am trying to conceive. Just got my period today unfortunately.

I'm getting a bit concerned as I was hoping to have my DCs close in age but now because of several miscarriages there will be at least 4 and a half years between my youngest and the baby (if I ever have one)

My older DCs are close in age and I feel the new baby will be left out. They have grown up together and go places together and love the same things.

I was thinking today that if i do get pregnant again and actually have a baby then I should straight away try for a final fourth one - as it would be nice to raise two close in age

I think I'm getting a bit panicked about time passing as I never intended to leave a big gap and I was hoping to have all the DCs when I was a bit younger.

If I had 4 DCs we would have to cut what we are spending. We have cut back hugely since having DCs but might have to sacrifice holidays and just stay with relations etc - it might be worth it?

OP posts:

BeautifulLiar · 23/08/2015 20:13

People on here will mostly say no but I'm pregnant with my fourth and excited. Will be nice for the DC to pair up.


CarlaJones · 23/08/2015 20:19

Good luck with ttc and I hope you have the number of children you want.


Babyroobs · 23/08/2015 20:27

We have 4 all quite close in age ( average of 2 years apart). We didn't entirely plan to have four but that's how it worked out. I like having a big family overall but it is a huge expense and now they are in their teenage years they cost an enormous amount. We had a very cheap holiday this year and have only ever been able to afford one foreign holiday. Sometimes it is a struggle to feed and clothe them ( we have 3 huge boys) when they eat like adults and take adult size clothes. We get no beefits ( except child benefit) and both have to work long hours around each other topay for everything they need. Kids are relatively cheap when they are young but get a lot moe expensive as they get older.


HicDraconis · 23/08/2015 20:27

Have as many children as you can afford without state help. However if to have a 4th child the quality of life that your older children are used to has to change, be prepared for them to notice / make the connection / blame the baby. I've seen it (although it was DC3 not 4) in a friend's family; after DC3 certain things had to go - like ballet and the family holiday abroad. DC1&2 were older and often commented that "everything was ok until SHE came along and now it's all ruined, it's all her fault".

I also have friends with 4DC where everyone gets on brilliantly & older children adore younger ones, to even up the balance.

However - personally? I think anyone who has more than 2 children with the world as overpopulated as it is and the alarming lack of resources is being hugely unreasonable. Humans are inherently selfish though so I'm pretty much resigned to huge climate disasters / post apocalyptic scenarios in the future.


annandale · 23/08/2015 20:36

A big age gap in itself isn't a huge deal, I'm youngest of 3 with a bigger age gap than that between me and my next sibling. Was happy enough without a paired sibling tbh (spoiled beyond belief due to exhausted parents giving in immediately in all cases). It wasn't perfect, for sure, but it was OK.

We didn't have holidays very much after I was about 8. I didn't care about that but there's no doubt it limits your horizons to some extent. The optimum childhood is an illusion though.


WhatWas · 23/08/2015 20:37

I've four with two or less years between each of them. I wouldn't have it any other way but it is very expensive when they are teens and older. When the three older ones are home from Uni it's like a swarm of locasts have descended on us.
I don't think it matters half as much when they are little but as older kids or teens it does. People can and do manage but I imagine it's hard work.


Florriesma · 23/08/2015 20:44

Hmm. It's quite easy having 2 under 4 in some respects. As pp says it's when thru get older. I find they need more emotional support now and it's difficult trying to split myself into 3. Not that I regret having 3.
Also the costs of days out and holidays goes up quite a bit. It's a bit academic fore as I knew after dc3 that there was no way I wanted another. As it happens ds 1 and 3 get on the best. There is 4 1/2 years between them . Ds2 and 3 either love each other or hate each other in equal measure.

I would say good luck with ttc no 3 and see how it goes from there.


orangeyellowgreen · 23/08/2015 20:54

My friends have two pairs of children with a six year age gap between each pair. It's much easier for the parents than four children close in age. I often think this is the ideal family. The older two will have left home before the younger two reach the expensive teens.


MisForMumNotMaid · 23/08/2015 21:05

My XH left when my eldest two were one and three. I remarried when they where six and three and fell pregnant straight away only to miscarry, several times in the end.

I became fixated on the age gap and it generated a big pressure.

My third DC was born as DS2 turned 5, DS1 was 7. They're lovely. They're my DC and its all I know.

It has pluses and minuses a bigger age gap. It is what it is. They play fantastically together as a three and as eldest and youngest and middle and youngest, plus the eldest two.

Now they're 11, 9 and 4.

We originally planned on four but after so many complications i decided three was a good number. For DH the jury is still out but he respects and understands my reasons.

Going from two to three does have some quite big costs associated that you don't see on one to two. Particularly at the luxury end of life with things like hotel rooms.

My DS1 has Autism so we can't sit three next to each other in the car and changed to a seven seater. actually its very practical to be able to take a friend along on a trip out etc.

Staying with relations with four DC requires them to be quite generous of space. We've stayed with an empty nest aunt which was lovely but she was a little overwhelmed by a very full house.

Holidays are possible though. Sun deals, cottage rentals, shorter breaks, cheap flights. All just takes planning.

i hope things go well for you.


theWomenInTheWoods · 23/08/2015 21:19

misfor one of my DS's has mild autism and I think he will find it hard to make friends. Part of me thinks a big family will give him better support - I know there are no guarantees about how people will get on in the future or even if they will live near each other - but more siblings might lessen the chance of DS being lonely

OP posts:

idiuntno57 · 23/08/2015 21:19

not sure what your question is really but if it's should I have 4 then the answer is it's utterly up to you.

I have x4 very close in age. At one point had x4 under 5 years. It was hardcore but works well now. It is always expensive, relatives will always feel overwhelmed, friends will suggest meeting on 'neutral' territory to avoid trashing their houses but it it is what it is.

There are pros and cons to age gaps. Whatever you get the pros will outweigh the pros. It is the nature of parenthood.


scatterthenuns · 23/08/2015 21:24

A friend of mine had her 2 DC, but got pregnant by accident when they were 12 and 14. DS is now 1.5, and she is pregnant again for the same reasons as you. Go 4!


FlowersAndShit · 23/08/2015 21:24

Does your husband even want 4 kids? I see a lot of "I I I" in your posts.


maybebabybee · 23/08/2015 21:30

It is so weird how het up people get about age gaps...there are nearly 5 years between me and my little sister, 8 years between me and the next sister, and nearly 12 between me and my brother. We all adore each other and played loads together growing up.

I know loads of siblings 18 months etc apart who can't stand each other. It's just the luck of the draw!

So yes, I think ywbu to have a fourth child merely due to the age gap.


annab1980 · 23/08/2015 21:31

2's company, 3's a crowd

What's 4?


blueshoes · 23/08/2015 21:32

Agree with flowers. Hope everyone else is on board.


D0G · 23/08/2015 21:35

I have four. Always wanted 4 and dh was one of four so he was happy for 4.

Have the number of kids that's right for you. You won't get the answer here it's totally personal. If you're needing to ask on a forum maybe you're not actually convinced yourself.

As an aside there's 5 years between my eldest and youngest and that was bloody hard when they were all tiny so don't get too get up on age gaps.


HeteronormativeHaybales · 23/08/2015 22:23

I've got a 10yo and a nearly 8yo and am 36 weeks with no. 3. I am a bit apprehensive about handling the logistics of the age gap but I would never have wanted three close together tbh.
I wanted three for ages (also mcs etc, but if the first post-dc2 pregnancy had worked out the age gap between dc2 and 3 would have been 5 and a half years so still big in your view) but it is my absolute limit, so I can't relate to the desire to have 4. I do think it is probably not a good idea to have a fourth (or any) child not for his or her own sake but specifically as a sibling iyswim.


MisForMumNotMaid · 23/08/2015 22:25

I agree about the desire to increase close family for an Autistic DC. I did have that thought with having more.

The reality for us is DD is also now under assessment. So DS2 most likely has two Autistic siblings and I don't want his lifes dreams and desires to be burdened by a sense of sibling responsibility.

We are in discussions as to how we make provision that the burden is minimised as we don't know likely outcomes for DD but DS1 we know will need some ongoing lifelong support.

I do however wonder if their closness and loveliness as a little unit is in part is due to their challenges with the outside world. So its all swings and roundabouts.

As DS1 has become older he's needed his own zone out space and his own room has become essential for his and our sanity.

DD is in many ways the same so we had to divide a bedroom in our three bed house to make them each a little room of their own. This is another reason a fourth just would not be practical for us.


melinski · 23/08/2015 22:52

I have a DD with autism, she was diagnosed when I was pregnant with DS. We decided to stop at 2 because 1) the chances of having another child with ASD are higher if you have one already 2) DD requires a lot more of our time and attention than a NT child would, and this is more noticeable as she's got older. So I don't think it would be fair on her, DS or any new children if we had more.

I also feel strongly against having more children purely for the sake of existing children. If you and your DH want a 3rd and 4th child because you actually want more children then that's fine.


Preciousbane · 23/08/2015 22:59

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

EmeraldKitten · 23/08/2015 23:13

We're thinking kind of the same op, only with a bigger gap.

We have 2dc, ages 7 and 5. I thought 2 was it but the past year or so we've had a re-think.

But, there's stuff we have to do first, mainly finish saving and get a bigger house...probably around 2 years away.

So we'll probably look at TTC when yoingest dc is 8. And are thinking we'll try for 2 with a close age gap.


littlejohnnydory · 23/08/2015 23:33

Four DC here. They drain our finances and our lives revolve around them but wouldn't change a thing.

Disagree that older dc's quality of lifesuffers. Ballet lessons don't make 'quality of life' and I doubt that's what DC will remember. Their relationships with each other outweigh that massively.


drinkscabinet · 23/08/2015 23:55

I'm one of 4, with a 4 year age gap between the eldest two and the younger pair. I'd say (in my 40s) that I get on best with my closest in age sibling because we had some similar childhood experiences but that's the view from adulthood, not necessarily how I felt as a child. There are siblings that are close in age who get on brilliantly and some that don't and some siblings that are far apart in age who get on great and some who don't. Family dynamics depend on personality and parenting as much as age gaps.


SalemSaberhagen · 24/08/2015 00:26

I'm 7 years younger than DB, and 13 years older than DSis (this sounds like one of those wordy maths questions, doesn't it?)

We are all extremely close, me more so with DSis than DB is, but that's because he moved out when she was 3.

Having children close together is my worst nightmare, I'm aiming for about a 5 year gap!

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