Have you and your husband started talking about expanding your brood? If you’re a parent of an older child, it’s natural to long for a second (or third) baby at some point. It’s always a blessing to have another child, but just be sure that you’re really ready.
The Best Time to Have #2 (or 3)
Should you wait or have another baby now? First, let’s weigh the pros and cons of having kids close in age or farther apart.
- Less than 2 years apart
The highs: If you can embrace the intensity, you may be rewarded within a year or so with kids who entertain each other well and are nicely in sync when it comes to toys and activities.
The lows: Hello, chaos. Sometimes, it may seem that your kids are coordinating their daily tantrums, potty accidents, and whiny spells to keep you from getting any break. Your marriage may also get tested in these early days, with both parents feeling spread thin by the treadmill of feedings, laundry and sleepless nights.
- 2 to 4 years apart
The highs: With your older child heading off for a day of finger-painting at preschool, you’ll get the freedom to bond with your new bambino.
The lows: This revolving door – from baby to toddler mode, and then back again – can drive some mums up the wall!
- 5 or more years apart
The highs: Like Cher on a comeback tour, you’re a little older but smarter and more confident. Your firstborn may get a boost too. As they grow up together, the older child can help guide the younger sibling through the world of playground rules, school work, cliques, and lots more.
The lows: You’re commuting every day between Kid Nation – with primary-school obligations and evening Little League – and Planet Baby, which requires that you carry a cubic ton of gear, and likely a fussy infant, everywhere you go. Financially, this spacing has some downfalls. Your stroller and car seat will be out-of-date, so you’ll need all-new gear.
3 Tips for Harmony at Home
Besides the age-gap, the other aspect you need to think about is how to keep the peace at home between the family members when the new arrival comes. While your older child would definitely feel jealous and be a tad bit more cranky, it is important to have the support from those around you as you would need all the help you can once baby is here – trust us!
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help – from your husband, your parents or a babysitter who can offer both a break for you and your toddler.
- Get your preschooler to help with the baby. This will make them feel like an important member of the family.
- The baby will get plenty of the spotlight, so remember to dote on your former.
What are some other considerations when wanting to expand your family? Comment down below.