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Anyone with a 4(ish) year age gap between siblings? - Page 2

post #21 of 36
was nak and exhausted yesterday when i replied so i wanted to add more....

a 4 year age difference really allowed dd to be a baby for as long as she needed. even through the fall when i was first pregnant, she needed/wanted to be carried a lot in the ergo, etc. - throughout my pregnancy (from the time she was 3 1/2 til just over 4), i noticed a lot of growth and emerging independence - wanting to dressed, wash, sleep by herself. at least in dd, there was a huge difference between a three year old and a four year old.

as a pp mentioned - no double college tuition! although we will be paying for 8 years in a row
post #22 of 36
Mine are 3 years apart. If I had to do it all over again I would make it under 2 years, or over 4 years apart. The 3's are so hard, and it was doubly hard having a new baby and dealing with a moody 3yo.
post #23 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by kate~mom
as a pp mentioned - no double college tuition! although we will be paying for 8 years in a row
Now see, I really wonder if that is actually a benefit. My understanding is, if the family has two dependents in college at the same time, there is greater eligibility for financial aid. If you're looking at it long-term, you're better off getting that financial aid for a shorter number of years than squeaking by paying out of pocket for eight years in a row. Particularly since the years when children are in college are getting towards the end of the parents' earning years, when you should be shoveling as much into retirement savings as possible.

Here's my math, sort of simplified: In scenario A, Child 1 and Child 2 go to school during the same 4 years. Both owe tuition of $10K per year. The family's "expected contribution" also happens to be $10K per year. With the family's tuition cost being a total of $20K/year, the family will get financial aid to make up the difference (most likely loans but also probably some need-based grants). Total cost to family = $40K (give or take depending on then loan situation, but as I said I'm simplifying).

In scenario B, Child 1 attends for four years and Child 2 attends for the following four years. It is $10K per year and as this amount is equal to the parent's expected contribution, there is no aid eligibility. Parents pay $10K for eight years running, or $80K total. Man that means a lot less income to put in your retirement savings! (At this time a parent's retirement assets are not considered in the dependent's financial aid eligibility, so this is significant.)

My math could be wrong, I'm no expert, but that's what the situation looks like to me.
post #24 of 36
true - assuming, though, that the combined tuition is over your parents' expected contribution.
post #25 of 36
Ime, age gaps means nothing bad. Or they mean different things for different families. My first and second are 4 yrs apart and they aget along great. My 4 yr old was so totally excited about the baby he could hardly contain himself.

Personality, not age, is probably going to be the deciding factor in whether things go 'well' or are 'challenging'.

Congrats!!!!
post #26 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by springbabes
Actually, I believe the 2 year spacing became very common when humans stopped hunting and gathering and started farming--long before formula was invented. I
And actually, in my area, the 18 month to 2 year spread is so common because moms are first starting to have kids in their late thirties and don't have "the luxury of time," as one mom told me. I, however, did have that "luxury," and my children are 3 years and 7 months apart. It has been PERFECT for us for lots of reasons. My kids are now 21 months and almost 5.5 years old, and they are the very best of friends. Ds loves, loves, loves his little sister and the admiration is completely reciprocated. I won't bore anyone with particular details of their lovey-dovey sibling relationship, but it's great.
post #27 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom
Personality, not age, is probably going to be the deciding factor, in whether things go 'well' or are 'challenging'.
Without a doubt.

Thank you everyone for the feedback, it's very interesting to read.
post #28 of 36
Just saw this thread so I'm coming in late. My kids are 4 yrs. 4 mths a part. I love the spacing. I get bad morning sickness so I didn't want my dd to be too young when I got preg again.
I feel that my dd really got to be the baby for as long as she needed to which was important to me. My dd was very excited about being a big sister. She was also very helpful after ds was born. My kids call each other their best friend and it warms my soul. They are very close.


Good luck ttc!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
post #29 of 36
May I also give my .02$?

DH and BIL and not more than 21 months apart. They had rough time when they from when preschool-aged until after both their teen years. They hit each other, they got mad at each other, they through things at each other - you name it, they did it. I know that they also had a lot of good times but still my DH tells his mom that he had secretly wished for more support.
Now they run a company together and that's the best decicion they ever made. Both know the other one almost like they know themselves, they rarely argue and everything is going smooth. DH says that he can't imagine another or a better business partner. And BTW - they are 31 (BIL) and 29 (DH).

When I got pregnant DH and me envisoned a similar age gap like he and his brother had but as soon as DD was born I told him 'no way'. I was sooo filled up w/that little thing and I never wanted some other child to disturb this. Since we decided that I will beginn an apprenticship this coming autumn (college and work mixed together, a typical european thing ) ttc is put on hold until after that - this will be in 3 years from now (Jan.'06) So DD and her future sibling will have a age gap of 5 years. A bit too long for my liking (I thing that 3.5-4 yrs is best) but ok. I sooo miss being pregnant and I am soo looking forward to it!

So to the OP - 4 years is just perfect in my eyes! :thump up
post #30 of 36
I have eight children and their spacing is anywhere from slightly under two years to slightly under five years.

I think because I have practiced attachment parenting some of the inherent shortcomings of having children closely spaced were minimalized but it made life extremely challenging to me.

Two years is simply too close. In my experience, you will either suffer or the children will suffer from the rivalry and constant vying for attention.

Three year spacing is pretty good but you get some of the rivalry of a close spacing and some of the distance of a far spacing.

I believe the five year spacing was a bit too much because they had little in common. The closely spaced children are close but, in their own way, the far spaced children are close as well. It isn't as natural and they need to work to cultivate their relationships.

I have two children spaced slightly over four years apart. They have some of the distance that is a disadvantage but they are very close to one another and have a very good relationship with one another. These are two very mellow sweet children. They are presently 10 and 6 years old.

Debra Baker
post #31 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wurzelkind
May I also give my .02$?

DH and BIL and not more than 21 months apart. They had rough time when they from when preschool-aged until after both their teen years. They hit each other, they got mad at each other, they through things at each other - you name it, they did it. I know that they also had a lot of good times but still my DH tells his mom that he had secretly wished for more support.
Now they run a company together and that's the best decicion they ever made. Both know the other one almost like they know themselves, they rarely argue and everything is going smooth. DH says that he can't imagine another or a better business partner. And BTW - they are 31 (BIL) and 29 (DH).

When I got pregnant DH and me envisoned a similar age gap like he and his brother had but as soon as DD was born I told him 'no way'. I was sooo filled up w/that little thing and I never wanted some other child to disturb this. Since we decided that I will beginn an apprenticship this coming autumn (college and work mixed together, a typical european thing ) ttc is put on hold until after that - this will be in 3 years from now (Jan.'06) So DD and her future sibling will have a age gap of 5 years. A bit too long for my liking (I thing that 3.5-4 yrs is best) but ok. I sooo miss being pregnant and I am soo looking forward to it!

So to the OP - 4 years is just perfect in my eyes! :thump up
I'm German too. I've lived in the UK for 5 years (my dh is British). My brother just qualified as a lawyer in Munich.
post #32 of 36
Thread Starter 
I want to thank everyone who has posted here.

Your experiences have been very valuable, helpful and reassuring for me to read.

This is such a huge, life-changing step and it's great to connect with other mamas who have insights to share.
post #33 of 36
Good luck with TTC!! I also felt like I was somehow breaking the sacred bond of "we three" when we started to ttc for our second child. Having our second daughter has brought out something in our first daughter that is magical. The girls do fight somtimes but mostly there is love. Lots of it. My dd1, who was very high needs and self centered (and still whines a lot ) has turned into a little nurturer. She will do things for her sister that are so thoughtful. Like sneak into her room and put animals and books on little sister's bed "so if she wakes up she'll be happy to find her toys there." My dd1 reads to her baby sister, teaches her ABC's, and they are learning to become playmates (toddler sometimes makes that hard since she doesn't do cooperative play yet).

My toddler adores her big sister, easily forgives her after fights, and wants to copy everything she does. If my dd1 is napping and dd2 is awake, she will ask for her big sister and look for her.

Having 2 kids definitely changes the family dynamics and there are challenges, but there are also so many joys.The greatest gift I have given my daughters is each other.
post #34 of 36
My dd is 4y 12d older than my ds and i wouldnt have it any other way(cept for maybe a bit farther apart) When I first decided to have kids I knew that I would want them spaced at least 4-5 years apart. The reason for this in my mind was because I wanted to be able to enjoy a newborn without the demands of a younger child 2-3yo still possibly in diapers and needing me to do everything for them. My dd helps me so much I cant describe it. If I am nursing ds and cant move around she can do simple things for me like bringing me something to drink or handing me a diaper for ds. And when I am driving she can hand ds toys and stuff. I guess that makes her seem like a bit of a maid but it isnt that way honestly. She is also old enough to understand when I explain to her that I have to do things for ds right now. With say a 2yo that prolly wouldnt be as easy. And she is old enough that if I have to go to the bathroom it is safe to leave her for a few min. alone with ds. I guess not all kids are this way but dd is really in love with ds and is supper with him very gentle 97% of the time. Plus I have a older brother (8yrs) and a younger brother (2yrs) younger and by far i got along much better with my oler brother me and my youngest didnt start to get along until adulthood. Mostly a jealousy issue I think.

Honestly the thought of having 2 kids 1-2 years apart terrifies me I think it would be much harder since both would need almost constant attention. Plus I honestly wanted to be sure that I could bfeed as long as possible sometimes the milk dries up in pg and that would be that much milk that the first child would loose. I would say that I would definatly try tandem nursing but I just dont know if that would have worked for me or not. We are done having kids but if I had chose to have anouther it would have been at least 4-5 year difference in their ages to.
post #35 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by teachma
And actually, in my area, the 18 month to 2 year spread is so common because moms are first starting to have kids in their late thirties and don't have "the luxury of time," as one mom told me. I, however, did have that "luxury," and my children are 3 years and 7 months apart. It has been PERFECT for us for lots of reasons. My kids are now 21 months and almost 5.5 years old, and they are the very best of friends. Ds loves, loves, loves his little sister and the admiration is completely reciprocated. I won't bore anyone with particular details of their lovey-dovey sibling relationship, but it's great.


Also, the huge increase in infertility plays into it...we WANT a 4 yr spacing...BUT, it took us FOUR years to get preggo with our first....so we are really torn..do we start trying NOW(dd is 16 months)...and IF we get preggo really soon, there will only be a 2 1/4 year spacing..or wait 2 more years, until dd is 3 yrs, trying for that 4 yr gap, and then *possibly* have it take another 4 years..(or more)..or maybe try at some point in between..?? .so that the spacing is possibly 8 years +...and then risk being so old that we can't have anymore? dh is already 40... and i would like 4 kids....but if it's gonna take us 4 years each time...you can see how the math doesn't work out..

uugghh...it's just so complicated!

**looking back with frustration and amusement at all the wasted time, effort and money to use BC in college, convinced that if I failed to use BC even once, I would get preggo and therefore my life/future would be over.....surely the universe is laughing it's arse off about that one...**
post #36 of 36
Thread Starter 
Our first cycle has started and I am excited!!

Many thanks for the feedback, it's been very helpful indeed.
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