I'm not sure that Family Planning is the best place to post this, but here's my issue. Ds, my first and only child, is almost 4 months old but we're already discussing when to try for another. I want to have my children as close in age as possible, but I'm curious what more experienced mothers have to say on the subject. I guess I want to get all my baby care years done with as soon as possible, but I also don't want to make things harder than they have to be by having babies back to back. I'm also concerned about how a pregnancy would affect my ability to breastfeed ds. I'd like to keep bfing him for at least two years but I don't think I want to wait that long to get pregnant again. Any thoughts?
I have a few friends who have done this. One of them breastfed her first all the way through pregnancy and is still tandem nursing. Her DS is 2 and her DD is 4 months. Another friend had children similarly close (they are now 11 and 9) and says she'd do it again but that she remembers very little of that first year with essentially 2 babies. (She didn't tandem nurse.)
My DS is 11 months--almost a year. At 4 months PP, I was determined to have 10 babies as close as possible. As time went on I began to be really grateful that I had one. I am very excited to have more, but I also have faith that it will happen when it's supposed to.
The thing about mothering, as I am sure you have noticed, is that it is fluid. You don't have to have a plan in place, and even if you do, it can all change. I think learning to accept that made me feel really good about having just one and also the possibility of more down the line. It's easy to want to plan everything but I think sometimes it's good to give yourself a break and just enjoy the present. Just my two cents. :-)
i tandemed an almost 3 year old dd1 with dd2 when dd2 was born. i did it for a little over 1 year. i didn't even get my period back after dd1 until 20 months pp. i was happy with that - but at that point i was DESPERATE to have another baby. i was glad though that i had nursed dd past 1 year w/o being pregnant cause my milk dried up. it does that when you are pregnant, so if you get pregnant again before dc is 1 you may have to supplement with non-human milk jsut to get the calories dc is missing.
also, some women find bf while pregnant painful. i found it not painful but it made my skin crawl. towards the end, i felt like i was being violated. it was so uncomfortable. some women never experience this, and i was able to get through it. i would do it again, i wouldn't feel comfortable actively weaning a child under 3 - but i am not excited to tandem or nurse while pregnant again. i didn't nightwean dd1, but looking back, maybe i should have. it was really hard night nursing. during the day i could distract myself but at night, at 2 o'clock in the morning - there was no distractions.
some women have no problems with this, some women only find it painful, some only skin-crawly (like me) but you never know how you'll react till you are there. i never had any problems nursing dd1 till i was pregnant. i wanted to CLW even when she was 2 and i was newly pregnant. but i still had that reaction while nursing/pregnant and i know if i wasn't so dedicated to nursing her till age 3 i would have weaned her. which is fine - if that is always your plan but i hadn't planned for feeling that way and had a lot of heartache about it.
Thanks for your replies. I bf on demand both day and night with no supplimenting, so I doubt I'll be fertile for awhile anyway (although I know that's not foolproof). I read that most moms who exclusively bf don't get their periods back until somewhere between 12 & 20 months. I think we've decided to let my body be a guide. Once I know I'm able to conceive, we'll start planning more seriously.
Well I get my periods back pretty soon after birth, so I was able to get pregnant sooner. My kids are currently 3(almost 4), 2, and 1. DD1 and DD2 are 19 months apart, DD2 and DD3 are 15 months apart, and DD3 and DC4 will be 19 months apart. I love the age difference! It is hard when they are little(like right now for me...), but I think it will be worth it in the long run. DD1 and DD2 are already best friends. They do fight, but they play well too. I wanted to have my children close together too while I was young. Plus I will be graduating college in 2012, and I will need to get a teaching job after that. I don't want to have any kids after I start working because I don't want to have to deal with maternity leave or put a baby in daycare.