Re thinking how many kids you originally wanted - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 38 Old 01-07-2011, 04:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I grew up in a big family.  I always loved kids and wanted lots for myself.  About half way through my second pregnancy I started thinking I might be done.  I'm still having trouble working through this huge shift in decision.  I really do feel done though.  Pregnancy is hard on me, I'm not sure my body would hold up to another one.  The infant stage is hard on me too.  I just have so many reasons.  

 

But I still have that 1% of me that wonders who I'm missing out on by making this choice.  DH and I have agreed to not do any kind of permanent birth control for at least another two years, just in case.  

 

Anyone else in this boat?  How did you KNOW you were done?  Any regrets?  

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#2 of 38 Old 01-07-2011, 06:57 PM
 
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I always knew 2 was it for us and as soon as DS2 was born, our family felt complete.  DH has had a vasectomy smile.gif too.  There is a part of me that is sad I will never be mum to a little girl but I love my two monkeys and am content to be done.


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#3 of 38 Old 01-07-2011, 07:05 PM
 
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I always wanted 4-5. That is the number dh & I have always discussed & still very much want. But it is hard for us to get pregnant & I'm not getting younger so it may not be plausible for us to have that many children. We are seriously discussing adopting a sibling group in a few years to add to our family.


Surviving sleep deprivation one day at a time with dd (Oct '11) & ds (Oct '08).

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#4 of 38 Old 01-07-2011, 09:08 PM
 
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I always thought we would only have 2, but we did not feel "done" after 2, or after 3 for that matter.  We decided to adopt for #4, and it even crossed my mind that we may adopt again for #5 (not dh's though!), but when dd (child #4) entered the family we suddenly felt we were complete.  Certainly things do change from those best-laid plans. 

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#5 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 05:26 AM
 
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I always said we would have two, though in the back of my mind I felt like we would have five, four boys and then a little girl. After my second was born I was very sad that I would never have another baby so we rethought things and decided to just see how things happened. When my third was born, I thought for a while we might not have more, his was a difficult birth and he was a difficult baby (and now he's a difficult 4yo...) and when he was a little over a year old I said if I wasn't already pregnant by the first of March we would look in to some kind of birth control. found out I was pregnant in February. After my fourth was born I was a little sad to not have any more children but didn't feel it would be a good idea considering my husband's job and how unpleasant pregnancy is for me. Surprise surprise I got pregnant last Christmas and couldn't be more happy to have my fifth baby. Now I am undecided about the number of children I would like to have. I think about how lovely #5 is and how if I had had my way I would never have known him, but then I think about how difficult it was physically and especially emotionally to be pregnant, give birth, and do the first few months postpartum without my husband (he was deployed) and how hard it must be on my other children to have me pregnant so much (I have had HG with all but my last pregnancy and I did have pretty terrible morning sickness with him but it ended a few weeks past my first trimester so it wasn't that bad) and it is hard to think about doing it again, no matter how much I know they love and look forward to each baby.

 

So, long story short, I have been all over the place and I still don't have any idea. I do not think I will have any more children at this point, though of course I have said that before.

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#6 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 07:02 AM
 
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I'm a 2 kind of gal. That's the perfect number for my sanity, my creativity, my wallet and they can be best friends (fingers crossed..) A part of me gets sad thinking I'll never be pregnant again, or will never get to have another home birth, or won't hold my own perfectly babe. Than I try to remember how much I dislike the infant stage (it's hard on me, I do not handle sleep deprivation well) and realize that a third kid would just throw me out of sorts and wouldn't be fair to anyone. 

 

But I would like a few more pets : ) 


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#7 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 07:04 AM
 
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I always thought I wanted three or four, but like you, pregnancy #2 was really hard.  Add to that a precipitous birth and I really thought I was done!  Still do, most days.  But I wonder, too.  Now that DD2 is about to turn a year, my thoughts are inevitably turning to another baby.  Most days, though, I cannot even imagine one more person needing me.

 

BUT...I'm torn.  If I had to guess, I'll probably go for one more.  Probably not try until #2 is two, though.  I think a bigger spacing would help slightly.  We'll see --- it's so hard!

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#8 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 07:27 AM
 
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I've always thought I wanted two, maybe even four but now I'd like to stay in the mother of one tribe zone. I'm VERY unsure whether or not I'd like to have another. Financially, now is not the best time but if it were, I don't think I want to.

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#9 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 11:16 AM
 
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I wanted 2 until I had the first one, then that number went up to 3-4 and we'd decide after #3. I had #3 in 09 so we've been debating ever since, I could of gone either way, but I never had that clear feeling that I was done. Well, #4 is on it's way and honestly, the second I got the + test, it was a huge relief, like ok, now I am done! The not being able to decide is the worst. 


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#10 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 11:38 AM
 
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I originally thought that 4 sounded like a good number.  But I had an emotionally traumatizing birth experience with DS.  And I'm pretty sure that I dealt with some undiagnosed PPD.  I love DS to pieces and he is the perfect little boy... he's not particularly difficult or anything (aside from sleep issues).  And although I think I could get past the emotional issues, I'm VERY content with just one.  That and we both work (can't afford for one of to quit) and I honestly think that one is a good number for my energy, emotional, and financial levels.

 

We haven't made any permanent decisions, yet.  And I am allowing for the idea that once DS is in school, we might consider another.  But I think that I would want to be able to stay at home the entire first year...so there are just a lot of considerations.


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#11 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 11:49 AM
 
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I wanted 4-5, so did DH. Now that we have 2, I am thinking one more and then done. I still think large families are cool, but realistically, financially, we would have a hard time keeping a roof over our kids' heads if we had more than 3. However, we are very interested in doing foster adopt at some point down the road when our bio kids are a bit older and we are financially more stable.


“War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.”
― George Orwell, 1984
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#12 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 11:57 AM
 
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I used to want 2-3. DH wanted 1-2. We have 2 and I don't want more. I actually love pg and infancy, but 2-3 years old are the pits! DS is nearly 3.5 and I'm starting to enjoy it again, but we're still not quite out of temper tantrum territory. Haven't gone through teenagerhood, but I bet I won't love that stage either. Twice is enough for me! Maybe I'll be a baby nurse or a nanny or something someday, and I look forward to having nieces and nephews, but I want no more of my own!


Happy with my DH, 2 kids, dog, fish, and frogs
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#13 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 12:17 PM
 
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DH wanted no children, so we decided to have 1. After DS was born, we thought maybe an only child was okay but then later decided to have another baby. DH said that's it. He had a vasectomy when DD was 2. I cannot have anymore children. My PPD is far too bad, but I do still think about adopting from time-to-time. DH's sister & her hubby are adopting, and DH's brothers are adopted. Lately we've been talking about it more & more, but I'm still not sure either of us knows. In some ways, having DC getting old makes me want a little one less & less, and I'm pretty sure that if we did adopt, it would be a child closer to 3-5YO, rather than a baby.

 


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#14 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 12:24 PM
 
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I think it's normal to change your mind along the way. No one can predict how easy/hard it will be to become parents ahead of time, and of course there is no way to know what changes life will bring you.

I just took it one baby at a time. After our first was born, I probably thought just one more would make me feel like our family is complete, but now that we have four (all planned), we still don't feel done (and have been TTC#5 for a couple years, so we may very well have to stop at 4).


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#15 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 12:29 PM
 
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Wow. I could have written your post word-for-word about six months ago, except that my reservations were more about finances. Then baby #2 was born two months ago and suddenly I can't imagine *not* doing this again. I definitely want a third now, no doubt about it!

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#16 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 12:39 PM
 
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Well, as a teen I used to say I never wanted to have any children, then I got knocked up at 19. After dd, I said I didn't want any more but when she was about 3, I started to change my mind and ended up having another when she turned 5. I love my two kiddos. Sometimes I think they are too far apart in age but I think the spacing is just perfect for my sanity. I cant imagine having two in dipes **shudder**. I've decided (for now) that I will only have two.

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#17 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 12:42 PM
 
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That reminds me of my personal guidelines for when I was willing to have a second--two out of three had to be done before I'd get pregnant again, and preferably all three: Breastfeeding, Cosleeping, Diapers. If were were having a third, I think I'd follow it again. My two are close enough in age to play together (having a tea party right now!) but weren't so overwhelming in baby and toddlerhood.


Happy with my DH, 2 kids, dog, fish, and frogs
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#18 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 12:57 PM
 
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I always wanted 4. After two super easy pregnancies (but two shitty births) I upped that to 5. Number three changed things. The pregnancy was rough and the third shitty labor convinced me that I horrible back labors are my destiny. Even though he is a super easy baby I feel like I need to stop in order to give the three kids I have the attention they need.

I have no intention of sterilizing myself though in case I feel differently down the road.
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#19 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 01:06 PM
 
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I never rethought how many I wanted but life repositioned me anyway.

 

I always wanted 2, 2 years apart.

 

DS1 was a challenging infant and I wasn't ready to start TTC #2 until he was between 18 months and a year.  I then had secondary infertility.  DH and I decided to move internationally when DS1 was 3.5.  I gave away and sold all the baby stuff I was saving and admitted we were only ever going to have one child, but left permanent birth control for after the move. 

 

But, in the chaos of planning the move, we stopped paying attention and I conceived triplets. So now I have 4 kids.

 

4 kids is more than I can really handle well. I love each of them dearly, but never would have chosen this life. I truly believe that if my second pregnancy had been a singleton, I would have felt stretched and overwhelmed, but happy that my children had each other.  I try not to let the thought stick around on the days that it pops into my mind that this wasn't what I wanted.  But, I would be lying if I said I never had those thoughts.

 

What we dream of and what life hands can be so different.  It is deeply emotional to revise our images of ourselves and our families and to grieve for the loss of dreams we had. To plan on a big family and then have difficult pregnancies must be very tough. I wish you ease working through your decision. 


Kate
mother of Patrick (7/31/03), and Michael, William, and Jocelyn (4/27/07)
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#20 of 38 Old 01-08-2011, 09:42 PM
 
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I wanted four kids. After I had DS1 the number dropped to three and then after DS2 the number has stopped at two. I can't imagine going through the baby stage again. I gotta say that two is hard for me. I sometimes think that I shouldn't have had any kids.

 

Anyway, though I love the idea of having a large grown up family, I don't think I could actually get there.


It's complicated.
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#21 of 38 Old 01-09-2011, 07:20 AM
 
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I actually just posted on a similar topic before I saw this thread.  We have two, and we thought we wanted one more, but then I miscarried and now I'm rethinking.  I am feeling like a bit of a failure at the moment--I would really love to be a great mom to lots of kids, I would love to have an enthusiastic dh who was up for more kids, I would love to have unlimited time and money and patience to raise a lot of kids.  But in reality.....two are hard for us a lot of the time, and it's putting a lot of strain on our marriage, and I'm worried about a third pregnancy/infancy making everyone in the family miserable in the short term--except it's not short term, it's 3-4 years!  Dh and I come from small families, and our kids have no cousins, and I have this wish for a bigger, happier family than we have now, and more family support for our kids, especially when they're grown up.  But I think maybe it's just a fantasy, and a third child wouldn't guarantee more happiness for anyone. Selfishly, I am looking at the next two years and thinking, I could go back to work, we could travel more easily with two, we could make our lives a little easier if we stopped at two.  But I'm sad and I'm having a hard time giving up the dream of another little person at the dinner table, another baby in my arms, another little sibling for the kids.  I'm 37, and I feel like there's no time to make this decision, my fertility is running out.  I just want to be at peace with whatever decision we make.

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#22 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 05:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much everyone.  It's nice to see my thoughts and feelings echoed.  It's a funny position I didn't think I'd ever be in and not one I hear talked about much.

 

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#23 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 05:38 AM
 
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I'm the youngest of 6, so i always thought i'd have more than 2 kids.

 

After DD1 XP and i split.  DD1 was HN and i seriously went to the dr (aged 25) and asked to be sterilised.  Luckily he refused and fitted a Mirena coil instead!

 

I met DP and we had DD2 in June last year.  She is wonderful.  Don't get me wrong, i love DD1 with all my heart and being, but she was so so HN, people don't really understand how hard it is being a single parent to a HN babe until they've tried it themselves.  DD2 is a whole different kettle o fish, much easier and really so FUN.  It's like night and day.

 

So we want a 3rd, but i wanted 4 when i was PG with #2.  Now i'm not so sure.  Pregnancy is so annoying - i don't think i have particularly hard pregnancies i just don't really enjoy it.  My first pregnancy was really easy, my second was fairly ok.  My births are superfast and easy so that's not a consideration, though i think i have a rectocele since DD2 was born (not "finished" with my pelvic floor recovery though and not exercising the muscles enough plus still have 30lbs to lose so the jury is out), and i do wonder if my fast 2nd stages (5mins with #1, 6mins with #2) are too rough on me and i'll end up needing surgical repair if i keep having more and more babies.  I know some people talk about "breathing the baby out" but with #1 i LITERALLY only pushed once (and she was my first baby and not teeny at 7lbs14.5oz) and with #2 i pushed uncontrollably due to her knotted cord (knot pulled tighter with descent which is why i think the urge to push was so frantic). So i kind of feel like whatever happens will happen in terms of that.  I have a really short perineum too, so a 1.5cm tear would be 4th degree on me.  As it is i've had two very small tears, neither stitched, but both into the muscle.

 

I am someone who enjoys the baby and toddler stage BUT only wants to deal with one at a time.  Twins or triplets would floor me!  So i'm not looking to ttc #3 until DD2 is at least 3 years old, and since i'm 30, and have no real desire to be still having babies in my 40's, that in itself limits us somewhat.  I think 3 will be it for us, but we wouldn't have permanent bc anyway, so it doesn't matter soooo much if we change our minds.

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#24 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 05:49 AM
 
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I originally wanted 5 or 6 kids.  I grew up in a big family, and I love having family around me.  After we had our 3rd (well, kind of.  We had a son, then another son who passed away, then adopted a daughter, then had a bio daughter), we thought we were done, but I had that little nagging feeling that we weren't.  DH decided he wasn't done either, and we're currently adopting a special needs child from China.  We're almost absolutely certain that, pending a surprise baby that we're not at all planning, this adoption will be our last child.  It's not the 5 or 6 children I wanted (although technically, I guess it is...), but we can't really see ourselves with any more than 4 children now, due to our lifestyle and their special needs and the fact that 3 of them will be homeschooled (and the oldest one will eventually be homeschooled as well, when he loses his IEP...which he's probably only a couple years away from doing). 


~Brandon Michael (11/23/03), Jocelyn Lily Nữ (2/4/07, adopted 5/28/07 from Vietnam), Amelia Rylie (1/14/09), & Ryland Josef William (9/7/05-9/7/05 @ 41 wks). 
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#25 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 06:13 AM
 
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I always wanted 3.  I grew up with a brother and I knew I wanted more than that.  Then I had my first and seriously considered only having 1.  But then I did decide to have another, for numerous reasons.  After he was born, I knew I didn't want more.  Dh never wanted 2 kids ( he wanted 4) but he does understand why I don't want more and mostly agrees with me.  We've talked about adopting, but if we do, it'll be a long ways down the road.  And really, the thought of starting all over again with a newborn makes me cringe.

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#26 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 06:22 AM
 
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I always wanted an even number, and 2 was it! lol Boy and a girl. Done. Well, I have 2 boys. So now I want another baby. If #3 ends up another boy, that's great too. But I'm pretty sure I will stop at 3. 4 kids just seems like A LOT! lol


D, wife to an awesome man, mommy to 2 awesome boys!!
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#27 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 06:38 AM
 
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I have a little different perspective, but the same result.

 

Dh and I both always wanted a huge family.  Like 10-15 kids.  That mutual desire was one reason we were thrilled to find each other, because everyone else thought it was crazy.

 

Well, our desire hasn't changed, but we have realized that it was very foolish to take our fertility for granted, as if it would all just happen because we wanted it to.  We have three beautiful boys, then two miscarriages, then dh was out of the country for 18 months.  I still have hope for more, but I have had to put my "dream" for how our family looks away, and just be content with what we've been given.  Barring multiple sets of multiples, we won't get anywhere near what we originally hoped for.

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#28 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 07:14 AM
 
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I always smile when questions like this come up smile.gif....when I was younger I never reallly had an exact number in mind, I figured 3 sounded good. I had 2 boys and my girl and happily said "I'm done".  Well, hubby thought 1 more needed to come to the table, so I agreed and "made a deal"----I'll welcome a 4th if he had a Vasectomey after.  He did, and we were happy and fulfilled with 2 girls and 2 boys.---or so we thought!  6 or 7 years went by before we admitted to our "mistake" in taking away our chances for any more children, even thought we did foster parent another 8 girls thoughout those years....so around 9 years after his vas, we decided to have it reversed in the hopes of having 2 more children.  Our lives were just different then....he had stopped traveling with his job, the other kids were older, we had more money, etc....it just "felt" like someone was missing.  He had his vas-reversal in early Oct. of 2007, and we were pregnant with #5 five months later!  I cannot describe the joy she has brought to our lives....I get overcome with emotion when I think that she may have never been born had we not changed our decision.  Of course, we are still hoping that # 6 comes along soon, ( I like even numbers) Ha!

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#29 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 10:13 AM
 
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I have always wanted 12, since I was really young. My body is so messed up that we are really really blessed to be where we are. DH wants an even number and we'll be breaking that this fall, so we'll see what happens then. I am just hoping that when we have to be done I am at peace with that, because since I was a teenager I have had a burning in my chest for my babies. I hope that goes away when we are finished.

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#30 of 38 Old 01-10-2011, 04:12 PM
 
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I grew up with 2 brothers, I liked the uneven number, I always thought I'd have 1 or 3, I am a nervous person and didn't know if I could handle even 1, but I did know that 2 was just WAAAAY too "square" for me. ;)  My DH wanted zero because of a number of reasons, a big one was and is the world population thing.  I thought I could change him, and I changed him just enough to squeeze 1 out of him, and I'm willing to be SQUARE and go for 2, but he's not budging. 

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