How did you know you were done having kids? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 12 Old 05-21-2013, 09:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
LoveOurBabies's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: In an Australian kitchen
Posts: 618
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

I've got an 8yo, 6yo, 4yo and 1yo. I thought I was done after the 1yo was born, but I'm getting those twinges and feelings again. How do you determine whether or not your feelings about having another child are "legitimate" enough? I can understand if a mama of 1 or 2 wants another, but a mama of 4? Surely I must be mad.

I tell myself to shut up sometimes and be THANKFUL that I have four lovely healthy children.. I mean WHY do I want more? I don't understand. I have 2 older sisters but they are both much older than me and so I grew up like an only child (even though technically I'm not). I always wanted a big family and I thought 4 was the perfect number. Well I've got my lovely 4 now, so what the hell is going on! Isn't four kids enough?? I feel like I'm being greedy (as though I'm taking future children away from people who deserve/need to have them).

 

Talk me out of this.

 

DH's opinions on the matter are: Whatever you want. You're going to have to carry it, birth it, breastfeed it.. I just have to do the rocking to sleep and bring home the money.


 

Me:  run.gif  DH:  hammer.gif 

 

Our babies:  reading.gif  blahblah.gif energy.gif moon.gif and a  stork-suprise.gif  coming in July

 

 

 

LoveOurBabies is offline  
#2 of 12 Old 05-22-2013, 01:57 PM
 
Mulvah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,971
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

As someone who always had a magic number, hit that magic number, and is 100% done having babies, I'm not sure if I can be much help.  I can tell you that for me, I don't just think about the baby phase, I think about the future.  How many people do I want to raise?  I also think about the things that matter to me and how the number of children could impact that. 

 

You did say this, "Isn't four kids enough?? I feel like I'm being greedy," and I really disagree with both.  If you can afford to take care of more children and you and your spouse want more, that is your business.  Two was enough for me, but I would not dare suggest that two should be enough for everyone else.  And, the greedy bit?  You could say that about people who have more than one child and you can use that excuse with just about anything.

 

If I were you, I would sit down and have a serious chat with myself about why I wanted more children, whether it was simply about wanting a baby (not an adult), whether it was about the sadness of ending that chapter, and then I would decide if I really thought it was best for my family to have another child.  And, no one says you have to decide today.  smile.gif

Mulvah is offline  
#3 of 12 Old 05-23-2013, 04:44 AM
 
CherryBombMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 850
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I know I am done because there is no way I want to be pregnant again. No way I want to gain 40lbs, have to find clothes that fit my baby belly, try to shave my legs with that baby belly, chase my kids while tired and pregnant. NO. WAY. I loved labor/birth and those hard newborn months, but I hated pregnancy.

 

That being said, I do technically want another child. But I have a newly turned 4 year old, a 2.5 year old and a 1 year old.  I am SO TIRED of buckling everyone's seat belts when we get in and out of the car.  Every time I do it, it stops me from having another. 

 

So, in other words, I know I am done because I will not submit myself to another torturous 42 weeks. Because they always last 42 weeks. Peace.gif


             Coffee, Vintage and Kids.  My Life.
              reading.gif  jammin.gifdust.gif   1sttri.gif

                        cat.gifcat.gifcat.gif

                                      

CherryBombMama is offline  
#4 of 12 Old 05-23-2013, 05:23 AM
 
skycheattraffic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,699
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm a magic number type of gal. Mine's two and here's why:
- no need to move to a bigger house. We have a 3br and parents and each kiddo can have own bedroom.
- no need to buy a bigger car. We have a matrix and love the mileage, the ease of parking, the smaller cost of ownership. We don't need to fumble with a 3 across carseat situation.
- I'm a SAHM and feel confident taking care of 2 kids; after all I have 2 hands. I know this is silly but the thought of 3+ kids terrifies me in terms of walking around in the city among other things. With 2 toddlers I can grab a hand each; it's simply a comfort thing.
- I plan to send my kids to school. Once baby number two enters K, I can retrain for a second career and find professional fulfillment, meet new people, etc.
- as baby #2 outgrows them, I can sell the baby stuff and reclaim valuable real estate in the house.
- I don't want to be a new mom after the age of 35. I'll be almost 33 when baby number 2 arrives and I feel like I now need to focus on helping these children grow, much easier without a newborn in tow.

So these are my reasons for stopping at 2. They are different than the reasons you may have for stopping at four but I think living space and transportation may be universal considerations. I think it's very normal to mourn the baby period in our families but I agree with pp: babies grow and we seriously need to consider how many children/teenagers/young adults we want/can support in the family. DH and I can save enough to help two kids through post secondary but would seriously struggle to do so for 3+ children, especially since more kids would delay my return to the workforce by years.
I don't know if this helps, it's just my perspective in my shoes smile.gif
skycheattraffic is offline  
#5 of 12 Old 05-23-2013, 05:37 AM
 
mama amie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 477
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Skycheattraffic said exactly what I would have. We just went from having 2 older SUVs to one new little wagon. The gas $ we now spend is a tiny speck of our past use, and we four fit in there just right. Another child would require a different vehicle and eventually a bigger cost of living in general.

Also, I have no idea how people manage with more children that this. I am almost always on the slightly overwhelmed side with 2 kids, and I still mourn my old relationship with DS. I've digressed. Whatever feels good to you is what you should do. smile.gif
mama amie is offline  
#6 of 12 Old 05-23-2013, 07:24 AM
 
limabean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 9,601
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Along the lines of what Mulvah said, sometimes I have fleeting moments of wishing for another baby, but I don't actually want 3 kids instead of the 2 I've got, you know? I don't want to be a family of 5, I just get nostalgic for babies sometimes.

So I know I'm done wanting more kids when I get super pragmatic and think about all that adding another person to our family would entail, beyond the snuggly baby stage. And my reaction is always, "Ugh, no."

DH+Me 1994 heartbeat.gif DS 2004 heartbeat.gif DD 2008 heartbeat.gif DDog 2014
limabean is online now  
#7 of 12 Old 05-28-2013, 02:49 AM
 
PrimordialMind's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 327
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think its important to evaluate if you're feeling nostalgic for the baby stage or if you're looking forward to raising a whole new person, with all their stages of development. If its simply wanting a baby then you might actually be craving more affection or excitement in your life, maybe something new that excites you. If you're yearning for a new person then i would take it at face value and plan to have another one at some point. There is nothing wrong with wanting one more if thats what you and your DH truly want.
PrimordialMind is offline  
#8 of 12 Old 05-28-2013, 12:01 PM
 
contactmaya's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,054
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)

I  think about this alot because  i think if my life circumstances were different, i would never be done.  I mean, how can you justify never having another baby or  cute toddler, not to mention that growing child learning about the world, or the way love just grows in a family....yes, it is challenging, every stage has its challenges... especially without that proverbial village, or safe environement where kids can just play in an unorganized fashion with other kids...this adult centered world tires this mama out. Always having to make excuses, apologize for kids  being kids etc etc.

 

Im 46, thats the only reason i know im done. I look forward to enjoying my older kids (have a baby now) without a baby to make this more complicated....thats the only  other reason i know im done..but.... maybe ill never really be done....

contactmaya is online now  
#9 of 12 Old 05-28-2013, 12:06 PM
 
contactmaya's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,054
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)

ps. having a baby, even if its only your first, is always irrational.  It just depends on your values. I can understand you wanting another. I hit my magic number too, and feel content with the way things are...however,  once you have your cycle back  after breastfeeding/pregnancy, and you realize what your body can do, every little twinge starts to take on a significance....

contactmaya is online now  
#10 of 12 Old 05-28-2013, 06:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
LoveOurBabies's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: In an Australian kitchen
Posts: 618
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by contactmaya View Post

ps. having a baby, even if its only your first, is always irrational.  It just depends on your values. I can understand you wanting another. I hit my magic number too, and feel content with the way things are...however,  once you have your cycle back  after breastfeeding/pregnancy, and you realize what your body can do, every little twinge starts to take on a significance....

 

Yes!!! Exactly. I fall pregnant very quickly too, so I'm made even more aware of the void every month so to speak.

 

THANK YOU TO ALL FOR THEIR INPUT. I've been reading the replies and having quiet conversations with myself.

 

I am still deciding whether it's a new person or a new baby I want. I'm inclined to believe it's 50/50 at the moment. I love babies and kids in general.. I love being around them, dedicating my energy to them.. I simply feel blessed being a mom. When the kids leave home, I'll be pursuing a teaching degree (and ditching my science degree) and spend my days teaching little ones.

 

I do feel the love within our family has grown by leaps and bounds since our last child. I can't begin to explain what a joyous year it has been, even with all the sleep deprivation. None of our children were planned and I remember the feeling of panic at first when I found out about each pregnancy. I also remember the paniced thoughts of "Can we really do this? I can't do the sleepless nights again" during each pregnancy. Then the child is born, somehow we adjust seamlessly and the addition just adds more richness to our family.

 

As for feeling greedy, I guess it's stemming from the fact that we have someone within our family trying for a 2nd child and not having any success for almost a year now. I don't want to make it seem like I'm rubbing it in (if I am pregnant with another child) and as rediculous as this sounds, I am afraid there will be snickers on both sides and many comments of "Don't you think you have enough now?". Those comments tend to grate on my confidence as a mom, not only towards the children we do have, but any future ones we may have as well. With the birth of our 3rd and 4th, we were asked "Are you done now!?!"

 

Then my sister tells me that she can't wait until the day I'm either not pregnant or breastfeeding so that we can go out together and get drunk. Uhhh, I'm not into that shit anymore. I would much rather spend the night cuddled up with my four and absorbed in a children's novel!


 

Me:  run.gif  DH:  hammer.gif 

 

Our babies:  reading.gif  blahblah.gif energy.gif moon.gif and a  stork-suprise.gif  coming in July

 

 

 

LoveOurBabies is offline  
#11 of 12 Old 05-29-2013, 10:03 PM
 
Storm Bride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 27,300
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I always wanted four, and I know I'm done at four living children. But...if I'd been younger when I had my last, and if my reproductive history hadn't been riddled with so many issues, and if dh were onboard...I think I'd have gone for two more. I'm too old, too tired, and my last pregancy (a pregnancy after loss) was much too emotionally difficult, plus I've had five c-sections, so it was time to call it quits.


Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing ribbonpb.gif Aaron Ambrose ribboncesarean.gif (11/07) ribbonpb.gif

Storm Bride is offline  
#12 of 12 Old 05-29-2013, 10:44 PM
 
LiLStar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: WA
Posts: 3,373
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)

I'm not done yet, but I do feel like I'm getting close to done. I want another (the sooner the better! Waiting for dh to be ready and hoping for an oops, lol) and it will probably be my last, but I'm not ready to commit 100% to that. I find the baby stage sooo addictive. Just bliss. I love pregnancy. I love birth. I love sweet squishy newborns. With my pregnancies, whenever I'd hear someone else say, in a ddc, something like "this one's my last, trying to enjoy it" or whatever, I'd just think.. I'm so glad I'm not there yet. I'm so glad I can have a few more and do this over and over again. Just the thought of closing up shop and not having a newborn again was devastating! And it still is.. its hard to accept the idea of the next pregnancy being last. 

 

And yet.. my older kids are getting older. The things my oldest enjoys are slowly turning more into the things *I* enjoy! We can do fun things together! But then we'll be at the water park and we're weighted down by a baby or toddler, one parent always staying in the kiddy area, while the other is off going on the fun big slides. And I think.. wow, it will be so fun to come back here when our youngest is  5-6! I really, really love the baby stage, but now that I have a 6yo.. big kid stuff is fun too! And when there's fun interesting things I want to do with her, but is just so hard to do with the littles, I do feel sad that the younger ones are "holding her back". I'm the youngest in my family, so I never experienced that.  I'm excited to be able to break out a board game, or a large puzzle, and not worry about a toddler coming over and grabbing the pieces and messing it up. Playing board games that are a little more mentally stimulating, too. And.. I really struggle with toddlers-preschoolers :( I'm particularly eager to get THAT behind me. I kind of take all these little feelings of looking forward to the next stage of parenting as signs that I'm ready to move on. 

 

But it'll be so hard. I hear sometimes from moms of older kids, checking out new baby gear, be it a nicer car seat, or better cloth diapers, or whatever, and "wow, I wish we had that when my kids were babies!" And I wonder.. how long until I'm saying those words? I don't know if the longing for a *newborn* will go away, but I do feel somewhat disinterested in raising more than about 1 more *person*. Although.. if I have a boy next.. its possible. Heh. I really want to have 2 daughters. I have 4 older brothers and no sisters. I always wanted one. Its left me with a complex that I can't leave my daughter sisterless! :P 


dd (7) ds (5), ds (2) &3rdtri.gif hbac.gif and the furbabies cat.gifZeus, Dobby, Luna, & Ravenclaw
LiLStar is online now  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off