Is the 3rd child really the hardest? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-03-2010, 05:05 PM
 
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#3 wasn't the hardest for us, I don't think. I mean sure, it made things a little more challenging as we were outnumbered and all that, but it wasn't as frightening as some make it out to be. #4 was a breeze. At that point, what's one more? LOL. I have been super lucky to have easy-going babies, so I'm sure my feelings would be different if even one had been high-needs.

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Old 02-03-2010, 05:32 PM
 
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I have three boys, ages 5.5, 4 and 10 weeks. #2 was by far the hardest transition in our family...my DH and I nearly split after #2. Now the first two were 17 months apart and I tandem nursed for over 2 years, so I was very focused on the kids and not much else (like DH).

In the just about 10 weeks we've lived with our sweet #3, we have wavered on our 'being done' stance. He's a fabulous baby and I think that this is partly him and partly that we're much more relaxed as parents. I still have to carry him around the house to stop the fussies, but now I just pop him in the sling, unload the dishwasher and enjoy being close to him. So far for us, #3 has been the best and easiest transition ....and brought us closer as a couple, too.

Ask me again when he begins to crawl, though!

Gwen , partner to D ; Mamma to T (6) , J (4) , and baby P
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Old 02-03-2010, 05:47 PM
 
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from what you guys have said, i guess my "quiet little girl" dream is a little unrealistic. i don't know anything about having girls but i always thought there was no way that they could be louder than my boys. now i'm scared.
for us, #2 was THAT child. he's been extremely difficult, he doesn't sleep through the night, throws fits, gets into pickles all of the time, bites his brother. DS1 was a breezy baby/toddler but now that he's older he TALKS ALL OF THE TIME, LOUDLY. but i've always hoped that after DS2, any baby would seem like a breeze in comparison. i guess i'll soon find out. maybe #3 will be a "quiet little boy" like DS1 was when he was smaller.

Chelsea, Christian, Wife to Trey, Mommy to Oliver (11/3/2005), Abner (5/01/2008) and Baby #3 ( Due 9/27/2010)
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Old 02-03-2010, 05:54 PM
 
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I have 4 kids. Honestly, going from 0 to 1 child was the hardest transition for me.

By the time my 3rd child came, I was really getting good at the whole parenting thing. I knew how to divide my time between children. I'd learned lots of good tricks through trial and error. I was confident in my parenting.

Adding child #4 to our family was really difficult, but that had more to do with family dynamics and personality than anything else (DS was adopted at age 5, which is WAY different than adding a baby to the family!)

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Old 02-03-2010, 05:58 PM
 
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My first two are 19 months apart. DS has been super high-strung and demanding from the day he was born and DD is such a "mama's girl". If the transition from 2-3 is worse than 1-2, I will be needing lots of prayers.

SAHM to a crazy little boy (4.5) and a silly little girl (3) and my VBA2C babe
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Old 02-03-2010, 11:08 PM
 
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#3 was my easiest. a lot of this was her personality. she is an easy child. even her birth was easy. and I have all girls. I mean there was the normal stuff that having a baby and toddler in the house entails but for the most part Ava was the bomb. I was confident in my parenting. #2 was finally coming out of her evil baby phase (she was not an easy baby......really, tripplets would have been easy after her) and everything just sorta clicked into place.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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Old 02-03-2010, 11:09 PM
 
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I should point out, #2 was a delightful, amazing, toddler and is still an amazing young lady. Her baby chaos was totally worth it.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

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Old 02-04-2010, 12:57 AM
 
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#2 was the hardest. #3 and #4 just fit right in and we didn't really miss a beat.

Wife of 20 years to my superhero firefighting DH. SAHM to 2 boys and 2 girls (3 babies in Heaven- Baby # 5 5/2010 & Baby #6 8/2011 & Baby # 7 2/1013). Cancer Survivor 2011 ( Persistent Malignant Gestational Trophoblastic Disease)

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Old 02-04-2010, 01:11 AM
 
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The third has definitely been the hardest for us, but then there are so many other factors that could be related to that, it was an unplanned pregnancy, when the others weren't, c-section when the others weren't, NICU which we've never done before, major problems with breastfeeding, living 5000 miles away from family etc. it's worth it though!

Anne, Christian mummy to Nathanael 05/28/03, Ada 06/10/05, Grace 05/24/09
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Old 02-04-2010, 02:15 PM
 
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Its not that my youngest is harder, he is actually an easy-going baby most of the time. Its just that I'm really tired. We may have had more kids if I had the chance to miss the baby years.

Joy wife to DH, mom to DS1 (4/2005): DD (5/2007) : : DS2 (1/2009 :
I do what works and when it stops working, then I do something else.
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Old 02-04-2010, 03:17 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mbhf View Post
#3 was very difficult for me. I felt like a super-mom of 2 but having a third child was very humbling and difficult. And it's not that he was a particularly difficult child, either.
So far, I'm having a similar experience. But transitioning to 2 was also extremely difficult for me. I don't handle the EXTREME neediness of children in their first year as well as I'd like. I get stressed out easily. So when you add to that the demands and needs of other children, ugh. And the dynamics change with every addition and it's impossible to predict the changes to your other children (mostly negative changes in my experience...)

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This made me laugh "quiet little girl"
Me too...hahaha...in my experience, girls are MORE, just more talking, more emotion....


But anyway, meeting the needs of children is hard work. One child is the easiest because there's no competition. With every addition past one, the changes in dynamic/competition become hard. Temperaments don't always mesh, jealousy intensifies...parents don't get as much of a break, which doesn't help.

In love with Dh since 1998. We created Ds (7.1.03), Dd (10.16.06) and Dd (3.16.09).
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Old 02-04-2010, 04:16 PM
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I'm having my third this summer. My second has been MUCH harder than my first at every age, from the day he was born. He'll be 4.5 when this babe is born and my oldest will be 7.5.
There is honestly no way this child could talk more than my 4yo, girl or boy. He literally talks from the second his eyes open until they FINALLY close at night. My mom had girls and always said "At least boys don't talk as much as girls," but she's since retracted that statement. He is an exhausting person to be around, always going. Both my boys are very emotional as well but at least my oldest will just go cry or mope in his room, whereas my second will scream and tantrum.
Honestly after going from 1 to 2, with the kid my #2 is, I'm positive it'll be easier to add a third. Especially since my kids are both older than my first son was when my second was born. They're weaned, sleep in their own beds (without needing me to lay there or nurse them), take showers without my help, brush their own teeth, can fix themselves breakfast, lunch, and snacks. "Going back" to taking care of a baby will be a shock at first but I'm sure we'll adjust quickly.
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Old 02-04-2010, 10:18 PM
 
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#5 was the hardest here. Yes, harder than having two infants at the same time.
Because #5 came when I had a 17 yo., a 7 yo. and two 2 yos. A newborn on top there was a challenge. But it turned out fine!

-pixie, my dear, and (A-88), N-98, Littlest-06/00-08/00, J-03 & Little Miss Cotton Ball Button-03 (SN), S-05, Hope-loss 09/09, Bean-loss 04/10, and littlePopcorn due feb. 8th -11.
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Old 02-04-2010, 11:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think there's a lot of truth to the notion that it really depends on the kids - which is funny, because that wasn't what I was thinking about when I posed the question. I was looking more at the family dynamic (for instance, is the 3rd hardest because there are still two younger ones who aren't all that independent, but from the 4th onward they older ones are more able to help?), but, clearly, even there there are no cut and dry answers. But we knew that, didn't we?

My 3rd we thought would be the easiest, and in some ways, he has been. We were more relaxed about the pregnancy and his arrival than with the others, much because of experience, etc. We'd not only already had a baby, we'd already had a home birth/VBAC, and so there wasn't much new. He started out as such an easy, happy baby! I said it was wonderful that the 3rd would be the easy one, since I surely needed it by then! I was pretty wasted by the pregnancy - long-time health issues flared badly, basically, so I was mostly worthless for anything that needed to be done - and getting over that with a sweet baby was a pretty good thing!

Then he started moving. He was rolling at 3 months, crawling at 5 months, standing at 9, and walking at 10. He is NON-STOP, even now at 2.25yo. Super curious, active, happy, intense, and INTO EVERYTHING. He's the first one we ever bought baby gates for!! So, it's been a whole different experience from the first two, and definitely a challenge for all of us. Mostly, it's just the stress of having so much going on - noise, chaos, destruction, play, singing, dancing, etc., etc. It's not all bad, but it CAN be all a bit maddening when you're already maxed sensorily. (And I think both DH and I tend to be overstimulated by sensory input.)

We've looked seriously at a new house where the boys will have more freedom to do all their boy things - like make lots of noise - in an environment where it won't be so hard on DH and me. But, for right now, we're trying to stay put and just fix things as best we can here. And, I think if we make the changes we're planning on (DH working at an out-of-home office most of the time), that it will be easier on him to deal with the kids the rest of the time. And, then, maybe we'll be okay to handle a fourth. Maybe?

HeatherB ~ mama to 3 wonderful boys:  reading.gif 03/02; modifiedartist.gif09/04; sleepytime.gif 09/07 - and Eliana, babygirl.gif 11/13/10!  
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Old 02-05-2010, 12:25 AM
 
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Then he started moving. He was rolling at 3 months, crawling at 5 months, standing at 9, and walking at 10. He is NON-STOP, even now at 2.25yo. Super curious, active, happy, intense, and INTO EVERYTHING. He's the first one we ever bought baby gates for!! So, it's been a whole different experience from the first two, and definitely a challenge for all of us. Mostly, it's just the stress of having so much going on - noise, chaos, destruction, play, singing, dancing, etc., etc. It's not all bad, but it CAN be all a bit maddening when you're already maxed sensorily. (And I think both DH and I tend to be overstimulated by sensory input.)
Third dd is starting out like your 3rd son...same developmental timeline...and boy is she curious. I thought my middle dd was intense and busy! The difference with my girls is still obvious in their overall agreeableness. Middle dd is NOT very agreeable whereas younger dd is much more so...which makes younger dd's intensity slightly more manageable. My son is very gentle and sweet natured and sensitive (which is a BIG problem because middle dd LOVES to agitate him and toy with his feelings...UGH). Is that just a girl thing?

Anyway, I'm an introvert and the noise level has been HARD!!!!!!!!! Why oh why did I have such a strong need to reproduce, .

In love with Dh since 1998. We created Ds (7.1.03), Dd (10.16.06) and Dd (3.16.09).
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Old 02-05-2010, 01:07 AM
 
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i know that my 2 boys can be very loud and wild. the loud volume is what really stresses me out but when the two boys fight, it seems to really stress out DH. we don't know what we're having yet but if it's a quiet little girl, i might not know what to do with her lol. i'm sure this baby will really change things either way.

but i want 6 someday, so i'd love to know if after 3, it doesn't get too much more difficult.
I can't comment on more than three, since I just have three myself, but I want to point out that girls are not necessarily quieter than boys! I have a 7-year-old boy, a 4-year-old girl, and a 1-year-old boy, and the girl is by far the loudest and wildest. She's a daredevil and every time I've had to call 911 or poison control it's been because of her. I took her ice-skating with friends today and they had those little walkers for teaching little kids to skate. It was her first time skating, and she had one, and she and one of her friends (a boy in this case) started ramming their walkers into each other head-on and falling on their butts and giggling. My big guy would never have thought to do that, and my little guy just watches and laughs at everything.

So it may be that you'll have two wild boys and a wilder girl!

Nealy
mama to T (12/02), L (2/06), and O (12/08)
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Old 02-05-2010, 01:16 AM
 
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I agree with it depending on the kids. I have 12, 10 and 7 months and I would trade the 12 year old (girl) for another 7 month old in a second :P
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Old 02-05-2010, 01:22 AM
 
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#3 was my easiest. a lot of this was her personality. she is an easy child. even her birth was easy. and I have all girls. I mean there was the normal stuff that having a baby and toddler in the house entails but for the most part Ava was the bomb. I was confident in my parenting. #2 was finally coming out of her evil baby phase (she was not an easy baby......really, tripplets would have been easy after her) and everything just sorta clicked into place.
I had to laugh, evil baby phase. I used to be a live-in nanny for infant twins, and OMG, those two boys were so much easier then my single DD1. I always say that I don't know who cried more her first year of life, me or her. She is 7 now and still THAT child, I have finally decided that the only way our family can stay sane is to run her into the ground every single day so she has a crazy schedule of school, and after school activities. The child was up snowboarding until 7:30pm tonight when we finally dragged her off the mountain, but she is finally as happy as I think she can be and so are the rest of us.

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Old 02-05-2010, 03:03 AM
 
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I found the third to be the easiest. For me it was number two that really knocked me on my @ss! Going from 2 to 3 was easy because I was already used to multi-tasking and watching more than one child on my own. We are done for various reasons but I wouldn't really be worried about going to 4 if that is what we chose. I think once you have a little herd of kids following after you everywhere adding one more to the mix isn't that hard!

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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Old 02-05-2010, 05:45 AM
 
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So it may be that you'll have two wild boys and a wilder girl!

Nealy
mama to T (12/02), L (2/06), and O (12/08)
if #3 ends up wilder than #2, i may lose my mind.

Chelsea, Christian, Wife to Trey, Mommy to Oliver (11/3/2005), Abner (5/01/2008) and Baby #3 ( Due 9/27/2010)
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