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DS doesn't want a sibling, do I take his comments seriously? - Page 2

post #21 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post

My Mom is 66 years old. Her health and her mind are failing.

I am SOOO incredibly glad to have not only my Brother, but my Sister in Law to tag team with me when it gets bad. I know I couldn't handle it all by myself. I need my brother to help me with this.



My mom is in her 70's, living with us, and I have not had one OUNCE of help from my siblings.  Siblings can add a TON of bitterness to such a situation. I'd rather be an only child, knowing that the burden is solely on me, rather than resent my selfish sisters who think that because we're better off, it's my responsibility.

 

OP - I absolutely think you're doing the right thing.  It's not your ds's decision, but taking his feelings into account, IMO, is the right thing to do.  Good luck!!

post #22 of 36
A 4 yo's comments (or a kid at any age) would not have any bearing on whether we had more kids or not.

They would, however, make me very conciencious that this may be a kid who easily feels displaced or neglected, and I would be working on that as a seperate issue whether we had more kids or not.
post #23 of 36

No, I would not take my 4YO's thoughts on whether to have another child or not into account. Heck, my 4YO wants another cat, but we're not getting one! She just doesn't have enough of a long-term viewpoint to make the decision on whether to get a pet that will be with us for 10-15 years.

 

Also, I'd step away from the "what if they're not close?" concern. What if they're not? It won't be the end of the world. My sister & I aren't close. We get along. We like each other. We're just really, really different and not "friends." It's really fine. You don't have to be close to your siblings. Obviously it would be unfortunate if we hated each other, but you don't have one person just to be a companion to another person. If you have a new child, that child will be his/her own person without regard to your DS. 

post #24 of 36

No, unless he has special needs, I probably wouldn't take his comments seriously. That is way too much responsibility for a four year old. But I also wouldn't discuss the TTC and have a lot of discussion about the matter at all. Wait until your pregnancy is well established and then discuss it as a done deal. Playing what if is a losing game with a four year old. What if he started to ask/throw daily tantrums about his missing and needed siblings?

 

I think you should take his needs seriously in introducing a new sibling of course.

post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by nextcommercial View Post

My Mom is 66 years old. Her health and her mind are failing.

I am SOOO incredibly glad to have not only my Brother, but my Sister in Law to tag team with me when it gets bad. I know I couldn't handle it all by myself. I need my brother to help me with this.

My daughter is an only child. I am not ever having anymore kids. I'm too old even if I wanted another child. I feel bad that she's an only child, and she had a great childhood, and had more than I could have given her if I'd had other kids. I think being an only child is great too, but I bet she'll miss having a sibling when she's 45 yrs old.

OT:
 

Dh came from a huge family (as did I).  We live the closest to his parents, who are in their late 80s.   His many brothers, some of whom are also in town, are of absolutely no help with his parents.  In fact, while they make a big show of talking about being helpful, they actually make taking care of the ILs much harder.  I wouldn't have children based on the premise that they will help out with me in my old age.
 

 

post #26 of 36

I get where you're coming from, I think, OP. We are sort of in the same situation, though we have not had trouble with infertility. In our situation, dd was a planned only. I had her when I was 36. Then, last year, we decided to try again after all. Dd had just been so much fun and she was getting older, and we were in a better financial situation and, and...

 

So at 42, much to my surprise I conceived within 2 months. Dd had always made it clear that she did NOT want a sibling. She was very articulate about why, too. Again, in our case it was a very casual conversation. It does come up! No, she has never had a "say" in our decision; but living with her day in and day out, having her make comments here and there and knowing she is very, very happy as an only and we aren't exactly pining for another child either, well, it does change the tone of OUR conversations about it a bit, rightly or wrongly.

 

After I miscarried, I was diagnosed with an ovarian cyst. We were told not to TTC until it resolved. It has now been 9 months and the cyst is "persistent." We still really shouldn't TTC. I am now 43.

 

If we really, really wanted another baby, I would be pressing harder for a referral to a specialist to deal with my cyst. It has been imaged and tested repeatedly and deemed to be noncancerous. It can be watched for now, unless I want to have a baby. Then it should probably be removed first. If that was the route we wanted to go, I should be demanding an appointment at the infertility clinic and prompt surgery. As it stands, I haven't done that. I think it's all part of the "letting go' process for us and somewhere, that little voice of my dd does whisper in my ear. Is she part of the decision? Not really, not consciously. But knowing she's happy with the status quo does help move us along a little. I think if she were "begging for a sibling" then yes, I might actually be swayed a bit in the other direction.

 

It might just be that her feelings help us feel like maybe it's okay, just the three of us. Maybe we should just focus on that. But I think those our our feelings, more than dd's.

post #27 of 36

Before getting pg with my 2 yr old, my oldest, now 15, flip flopped many times, she wanted a sibling, she didn't want a sibling, she wanted a sibling, she didn't want a sibling.  And the reality is that whether or not she wanted a sibling was never part of our decision.

 

HOW it would impact her always was.  We ttc for six years and the question of whether or not to continue and how far to take the fertility treatments did come up and how it would affect her life, being a big sister, not having any siblings, having siblings so much younger than her, was all part of the decision making process.  But her wants were not.  A child doesn't really get all the implications of having siblings, or not. 

post #28 of 36

I respect my children, and always take their opinions and feelings into consideration. They are people, and they matter to me. If you are happy with it being the three of you, and he doesn't want a sibling, then life sounds pretty good. If you want to continue trying, I would start getting him used to the idea. Either way, yes, I think you are being a great mom by taking his feelings into consideration. : )

post #29 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by happysmileylady View Post

A child doesn't really get all the implications of having siblings, or not. 



ITA. There's not a lot of abstract, future thinking or peer interaction to 'get' what it's all about. Kids are pretty self-based at this age - how can they not be? It's great to know his feelings so that you can help him process, but his stance would not affect my own thinking one way or another.

post #30 of 36

My dd was just over 4 when I became pregnant with her now 9mo brother. I agonized while pregnant over the ways in which her life would change, especially on days when she made it clear she didn't want a sibling. Of course, she was probably sick to death of being asked how excited she was to become a big sister by every well-intentioned stranger at the grocery store, etc. So PP, I can sympathize with you. I also read both of your posts and did not take them to mean you sat down and grilled your son on his opinions; nowhere did you say that his was the final word. I think it is respectful to put out feelers in a age-appropriate way to gauge a child's opinions on family-related decisions, but honestly a 4 yo has no idea what adding a sibling to the family will actually entail. Neither, for that matter, can his/her parents, which I say speaking from the experience of my own last 9 months! 

 

BTW, I don't think this thread is the place to argue the merits of having more than one child so there is help when it comes time to care for aging parents; there is never a guarantee within any family of how any of the relationships will pan out, nor can anyone know who will even be alive/able/around to help when it comes time make those elder-care decisions.

 

post #31 of 36

no. His feeling should be heard, but it's not his say.

 

If YOU only want one because of your DHs health etc, then that's your decision :)

 

I was 6 when my parents told my sister and I they were pregnant with #3. I really didn't want another sibling, I thought our family was fine the way it was. and I was REALLY mad I was being told and not asked lol.gif But after a while I got used to the idea and was exited about having another sibling

post #32 of 36
I think having a second (or third or fourth) child is a complex decision that will never be made on one single factor, and I think it's very thoughtful of you to put so much stock in how your son would respond to having a sibling.

When DD was born I almost broke down because my DS (3.5 at the time) was so upset. I cried and cried. It's been six months and things are better, but the effect on my son still feels irreparable. His sleep is chaotic, he barely eats food, he can't make it through a day without melting down, he has dark circles under his eyes. I wouldn't do it differently but I also don't minimize the impact it has had on my sweet, amazing little boy. My heart still breaks for him and his loss. He'll gain a lot from his sister in the long-run, but it's hard, so I don't think it's crazy to take an older child's feelings into consideration. At the same time, it's your decision and your DH's decision and your DS will get through whatever his challenges are.

Your boy is insightful enough to know there will be sacrifices. That's a good thing. It's our job as parents not to make our kids lives comfortable but to get them through hardship. I know that DS will someday be unable to imagine his life without his sister.
post #33 of 36

I think something that has not been said, and I know this is how my own brain works - is that if this consideration of ds's attitude will make it easier for you to move on then I think it's fine to frame it that way - I tried for years to get pg (and finally did, dd is 7 yo) but I worked hard to appreciate my life w/o children and to try to come to a place of acceptance about it -

You have some good reasons to stop TTC regardless of your son's opinion, but if this helps tilt in that direction even more and helps you feel better (although you may always feel a sort of loss of not having a daughter?but as you say there are no guarantees) then I think that's just fine...

 

Having just one child I can say I am very happy with it just the three of us, so maybe I am biased - but there are some definite positives to just one and none of the upsides to having a sibling are ever guaranteed...

post #34 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bonamarq View Post

I think something that has not been said, and I know this is how my own brain works - is that if this consideration of ds's attitude will make it easier for you to move on then I think it's fine to frame it that way - I tried for years to get pg (and finally did, dd is 7 yo) but I worked hard to appreciate my life w/o children and to try to come to a place of acceptance about it -

You have some good reasons to stop TTC regardless of your son's opinion, but if this helps tilt in that direction even more and helps you feel better (although you may always feel a sort of loss of not having a daughter?but as you say there are no guarantees) then I think that's just fine...

 

Having just one child I can say I am very happy with it just the three of us, so maybe I am biased - but there are some definite positives to just one and none of the upsides to having a sibling are ever guaranteed...


I'd been thinking about this thread for a while and was coming back here today to say something similar. My perspective is as the mom of one (fantastic . . . .most of the time . ) 8 year old DS. I got pregnant accidentally (IUD!). We've waffled about having another one, but I just turned 40 and, for various reasons, it looks like we'll probably stay with DS as an only.

Anyway, I completely agree with Bonamrq's post. I think a lot of people have taken the OP's comments as some sort of Consensual Living perspective gone completely off the charts. That's not how I took it at all. I took it as there being a lot of very valid reasons to stop TTC, however difficult it would be for the OP and her DP to give up their hopes and dreams of a second child. If their DC had really really wanted it a sibling, it might have tilted the balance in favor of keeping on TTC for a bit longer (or, at least, given a sort of much-needed outside "excuse"). Likewise, their DC adamantly *not* wanting a sibling could tilt the balance in favor of stopping. But none of this would have come up had they been able to conceive relatively easily and had their not been other medical issues for OP's DP, etc. Therefore, i don't think the OP or anyone else is saying that the DC gets to "decide."

Hang in there, OP.
post #35 of 36

We are going through a similar thing right now.  My son (4) reminds us alllll the time that he hates babies.  He hates going to the gym if there are babies there if he hears a crying baby in the mall he freaks out and says they should be quiet.  Seriously, it is a struggle.  We have been doing our best to encourage the idea that babies are fun, and that crying is their way of talking.  In Jan when we found out I was pregnant I started looking for fun books for him.  Unfortunately I mc.  I didn't give him the books as we were waiting until 2nd tri to introduce the idea of being a big brother.  He is not our deciding factor but his opinion on babies certainly does make us think about the idea of being a 3 person family.  We will still ttc again (if I can ever get af again).  It will be an adjustment for him, but if we are blessed with another pregnancy then there will be lots of talking and games to help him adjust.

post #36 of 36

I wouldn't let any child at any age be a deciding factor one way or the other. When it comes to things like moving, jobs, adding to the family and things of that nature they don't have a say. Yes certain concerns are/will be dealt with if they arise as in what can we do to make this easier and things like that.  but other then that their say won't matter.

 

I say if you want to stop then stop but don't let his comments about not wanting change be a factor. 

 

Good Luck on whatever you guys decide to do.

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