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AIBU to think of having an under 9 month age gap..

186 replies

Overthinking1 · 21/03/2021 12:03

This is totally hypothetical at the moment as I appreciate any pregnancy success is relatively un predictable..but my partner and I are going through IVf now (same sex).

She is going first as she is almost 40 and we hope to have two children..I am planning to carry our second child.

we have been discussing timescales around when this should happen.
Would we be insane to try and have a second child so close to the other? I'm just thinking there may be the benefits of almost twins without the health risks for any parent carrying two (appreciate twins are difficult in many other ways too)

I know 2 is going to be crazy hard regardless, so would appreciate any thoughts on what you all think?? is a very small age gap ridiculous or would you do it if you had the choice?

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?


You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

EasterGuineaPig · 21/03/2021 12:52

I have twins. I can’t see the benefit of having two babies 9 months apart. To me that would be worse than having twins in many ways. You’ll be exhausted.

Snowpaw · 21/03/2021 12:53

Hypothetical, but what if the first mother suffered PND and then a new baby was brought into the mix very soon after. Could be a really tough time for all the household. And your ability to support her would be hugely reduced with the demands of a newborn. I remember finding the age of about 9 / 10 months really hard because they are very mobile by that time but can’t understand language really, so there’s lots of climbing, making sure they don’t get into danger etc. Mine also dropped from two naps a day to one at that time so the days felt very long. Plus all the weaning mess. Add a new baby into the mix at that time I think I would have cracked.

I can see your reasons for doing it though and I think how you will manage will depend a lot on your personalities / energy levels / support you have around you etc. Lots to weigh up.

Overthinking1 · 21/03/2021 12:55

Thanks all, we will think about all of these things. although its very split opinions isn't it you can see why we struggle to know what to do.

If anything went wrong or difficult with the first pregnancy I do want to be able to be 100% there for my partner ( and myself in a position to handle that as I'll be going through it too.)

We will also be totally open with the children on who they are / our family set up, as i expect whatever happens they will explain themselves to school friends whatever the age.

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MissHoney85 · 21/03/2021 12:55

Without meaning to sound negative, this might be an unlikely problem. Lots of people think IVF = baby but the success rates are about 25% per cycle, less as you approach 40. Hopefully it will all work out first time for you and your partner but you might just want to manage expectations a little.

BooomShakeTheRoom · 21/03/2021 12:56

I have twins and if I could have chosen I'd not have had twins. My biggest concern for you be would be you'll not get time to enjoy child 1 before child 2 comes along. Then you'll not get to enjoy baby 2 because you're busy with baby 1 still.

At 9 months you'll likely still be waking up multiple times a night which will be hard being pregnant.

I would leave a 2 yr age gap personally. Enjoy each child.

Overthinking1 · 21/03/2021 12:57

interesting thought about the "my baby/your baby " dynamic, yes hadn't considered that and wouldn't want that to happen if possible

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Rozbos · 21/03/2021 12:57

I personally wouldn't, more because of the impact on the children. They will spend their whole school lives explaining that they are siblings not twins and that will necessitate them having to explain that they have two mums etc. Something that will undoubtably be totally normal to them but will constantly lead to questions from others.

I would also say that I'm not sure how much you will enjoy them as you will be constantly pulled in two directions almost immediately. I know that's the case with twins but I don't know that I would choose that. I loved just having one and being able to truly enjoy him before his siblings came along and it all got a bit mote crazy!

Good luck with whatever you decide op!

MrsBobDylan · 21/03/2021 13:00

I would say don't but only because your partner will really need your help and if you are then pregnant and then with your own newborn, you are then going to need her help while she still needs yours.

I can't imagine how I could have coped with a newborn while dh was busy with a nine month old.

To give you an idea of the scale of hell you could be unleashing, I had dc3 when dc 2 was four, which would have been fine except dc 2 is disabled and was still very much a baby at that age. DH and I can't remember much from that time, we both looked after one child each and our eldest had to fend for himself for a time which was shit.

Alienchannell21 · 21/03/2021 13:00

I do think they 'my baby/your baby' thing is really important. If you both have small babies you will become primary carer especially if breastfeeding. I'd wait and get at least 6months of one newborn out of the way to see how you manage.

drumst1ck · 21/03/2021 13:02

We are going to have 18 months between our two, due any day now. I wouldn't go for less than that, I underestimated how much toll this second pregnancy would take on me and it's been miles harder than my first. Only really coped because my first is a wonderful sleeper and napper so I get plenty of sleep. But that's not guaranteed with any baby so I would be wary of any age gap smaller!

BertieBotts · 21/03/2021 13:03

Financial is another angle to think about.

Most expensive period of nursery fees coinciding.

They will be overlapping their use of the most expensive purchases - you'll need a double buggy, 2x each type of car seat (rather than handing the baby one and perhaps the toddler one down - and these two are the most expensive!), 2x cots, 2x high chairs and as you won't be TAMBA members, no twin discount - some stores will give you discount if you're spending a lot regardless, so you can ask, but it's easier with the twin club memberships.

They will likely be in overlapping clothing and shoe sizes as well or if 6 months apart, fit correctly but be the wrong season to pass down unless you're lucky in that the second is much smaller.

Usagi12 · 21/03/2021 13:04

I have twins and you can manage with 2 babies fine, the issue will be the gap in development. You'll have one the oldest I n the school year and one the youngest and therefore always behind but close enough in age they constantly get compared and this can be hard on the younger one. My twins are obviously the same age but one is always 2/3 months ahead of the other and we struggle to manage this as do the boys. Ideally you'd want 18-2 year gap. Close enough you still have all your baby stuff, you can spread the cost (having two in nursery before your 30 hours kicks in is ruinous) and they're close enough to be close.

Also, something important to remember, there's a higher risk of twins if you're going through IVF, that's how we got ours. Don't start your partners IVF until you have the results of yours, imagine if you have 2 sets of twins 😂😂 That would be ace actually, do it! Xx

Hardbackwriter · 21/03/2021 13:04

I'm just thinking there may be the benefits of almost twins without the health risks for any parent carrying two (appreciate twins are difficult in many other ways too)

But you'd create some other downsides that you don't normally get with twins, because both parents would be pregnant/recovering from birth. They would also absolutely always have to give the story when they say they have a sibling four months older/younger than them, which they might not appreciate.

HoldontoOneMoreDay · 21/03/2021 13:05

I'd also be looking at your shared parental leave, I could be wrong but there's potential there for the other parent to be off on full pay but not at the same time as ML.

I think you also need to get an idea of how gruelling the IVF is. You don't want parent 2 to be strung out on the hormones of IVF while parent 1 is strung out on the hormones of just having had a baby. Plus lack of sleep.

Overthinking1 · 21/03/2021 13:06

@MissHoney85 no I totally get that and I actually have low expectations on number of attempts needed, but just wouldn't want to go ahead and try then find it luckily happened for us and we didn't know what we had gotten ourselves in for!

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Ilovefluffysheep · 21/03/2021 13:07

There is 11.5 months between my two. Didn't expect to get pregnant again quite so fast! They were not in the same school year which I think was definitely a good thing.

I was lucky, both mine were good sleepers and started sleeping through at around 9 weeks. My DS started walking at 9 months, and was quite handy that he was walking when his sister was born (she on the other hand didn't walk until 16 months, had no need to as she had her brother wrapped round her little finger, she would point at things and he'd fetch them!).

I can't imagine what it would be like to have two children so close together that didn't sleep etc, and looking back I can see how lucky I was!

Overthinking1 · 21/03/2021 13:08

@HoldontoOneMoreDay if it makes a slight difference we will be doing FET transfers as we already have our embryos made from the original IVF a few years ago, but still going through a stressful time yep.

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hiredandsqueak · 21/03/2021 13:09

I had two with an eighteen month age gap and then another two with a twenty one month age gap four years later. I'd say a less than two year age gap is easier than a larger one, you are still in baby mode and have all the equipment anyway.

singlemummanurse · 21/03/2021 13:09

I think there are people that could cope with such a small age gap and some that wouldn't be able to. You do also have to consider that with ivf there is higher risk of premature birth with potentially long nicu stays. How would you cope with a few month old at home with an extremely premature baby in nicu for months? It's obviously not a given but it is a possibility and something I would give serious consideration to in my decision making.

Coasterfan · 21/03/2021 13:10

I had two under 2, 22 months months between them. That first year was tough but i think it would have been just as tough if the gap had been smaller or a little bigger, a baby and a pre schooler is hard work! I have friends that stopped at one because they said they couldn’t do the toddler stage again, the constant need for entertainment and being into everything but I found I only had that with DD, by the time DS was walking, playing etc they entertained each other so I feel I only did the hard toddler stage once. It’s handy as they grow up close together as they tend to like similar things so it’s easy to plan days out, holidays etc around age appropriate activities. I d say do it, I don’t think having 2-3 years between them would make it easier.

Overthinking1 · 21/03/2021 13:11

@Usagi12 yes certainly wouldnt go before I knew my partner was having a single baby but that would still leave the risk of endeding up with 3 if I had twins! OK.. maybe this is too risky.

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RagzReturnsRebooted · 21/03/2021 13:11

I had 13 months between my first 2 (not intentionally) and while it was easier in many ways as I was in 'baby mode' and just got on with it, it was all a bit of a blur. I didn't breastfeed as long as I would have done if I'd not got pregnant so quickly, because I was conscious of wanting a bit of break between feeling babies. So I stopped at about 6 months and then same with subsequent DCs because that was what I'd done before (obviously not an issue for you two as can both feed).
I do think DD (2.5yrs after DS2) got more attention as a baby/toddler as the other two were at preschool by then.

Benefits of close age gaps were we already had all the 'stuff' knocking around for DS2 so clothes and cot etc. By the time both were toddlers they had someone to play with which meant less involvement from me and more supervision instead, which suited me. Most activities are easy to adjust for a 1 year age gap by the time they reach toddler/preschool age. They shared a room since birth and still do at 13/14 and while DS1 would rather his own room, they don't fight (apart from the odd rough play) or upset eachother at all.

I would not change how I did it. All over and done with a few years and all off to school within 4 years of each other.

However I would not have wanted a

RagzReturnsRebooted · 21/03/2021 13:12

[quote Overthinking1]@Usagi12 yes certainly wouldnt go before I knew my partner was having a single baby but that would still leave the risk of endeding up with 3 if I had twins! OK.. maybe this is too risky.[/quote]
That's a very good point! 3 babies is a LOT of babies...

DinoHat · 21/03/2021 13:13

I think you being same sex changes the dynamics to a degree in that you’ll both be entitled to maternity leave. That said it would be really tough having a pregnant partner and a newborn. Post partum partner will be needing support recovering from birth and pregnancy and possibly breastfeeding. Pregnant partner won’t be best placed for this or lack of sleep from a newborn. Pregnancy is tiring, I’ve had one awful pregnancy (terrible, constant vomiting) and one relatively easy one by comparison but I wouldn’t have had the energy for a newborn with either - my toddler is enough and he generally sleeps through.

Also I don’t know your finances but might be worth thinking about how two lots of childcare would impact you. As there’s no staggering from having one later.

SoWhyNot · 21/03/2021 13:14

I’d be concerned that due to such young babies needing constant attention and you both being off on maternity leave, you would default to looking after the baby you had each been pregnant with rather than both equally bonding with one baby at a time.

Although I’ve got small age gaps between mine and it’s worked really well. There are pros and cons to both options.

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