The Great Child Conundrum

Everyone I know is having babies right now. A lot of them are having their second child, it seems we’ve hit that age where it’s time for baby #2. But here’s the thing, I’m not ready. Maybe I should be and maybe there’s something wrong with me that I don’t immediately want to chase another person around the house right now, but I don’t. And not to say anything against those that do, because I think it’s great and I admire their courage – I often wonder why I’m not more like them. My best friend once asked me why I wanted to have kids (before I had the one I have now) and I couldn’t provide a definitive answer. It wasn’t because “everyone else was doing it” and with my first, I wasn’t worried about the time line because I hadn’t yet turned 30 – so what was the rush? I guess the sappy answer is that I wanted to share the love I had with my husband and learn what it would be like to raise a child together.

Little did I know in my blissful ignorance how challenging it can be – and I’m not even a single parent ( I seriously do NOT know how those guys do it. I think about that all the time). My husband is a great father and an extremely supportive partner, but even still having a child is hard. Tantrums and tears, sleepless nights that you have to drag yourself out of bed the next day and attempt to function like a normal human all day at work, come home and take care of them all over again. But that said, there’s obviously good stuff too. Love and hugs and seeing my daughter running and laughing, the joy on her face when she learns to do something new, all of those moment are amazing.

Lately a lot of people have been asking me when I’m going to have another child. Not even if, when. With statements like “you don’t want them to be a lonely child, do you?” I’d never even heard that term before. I don’t know why it matters so much to other people whether I have another baby or not, I mean hey, we make super cute kids and all – but there’s so much more to consider. I know it’s not even remotely the same, every day my dog looks at me with sad eyes that riddle me with guilt. I don’t have the time to cuddle with her as I used to, so how could I possibly split my time again and fairly to another baby?

I know people do it all the time, and you find a way because you have to, etc but to me, having another baby at this point in time seems unimaginable. There’s also the financial aspect, I often feel like we hardly have enough money to live (and I have new uncertainty in the job marker) and we only just stopped buying diapers thanks to our newly potty trained daughter. How could we have another child and be financially responsible to the family we have right now?

Also, selfishly, I think about free time. I have so little of it now, between birthday parties, play dates and visiting family. And with a 2:1 ratio, when one parent needs a break, the other can step in – but we’d be 1:1 with another kid. Then there’s there ‘close in age’ debate and having them be too far apart in age is considered a bad thing. I know it sounds like I don’t want another baby and why bother talking about it in the first place? But oddly enough, deep down – I think I do, someday. I guess it’s ok not to right now but as I get older, it will be time to decide soon. I’d love for my daughter to have a sibling to bond with, but I don’t want that to be the only reason to have another child. Sometimes it feels so hard to know what’s right.

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2 thoughts on “The Great Child Conundrum

  1. mmsb says:

    I say: don’t worry about it! You don’t want to have one now clearly. So don’t! Our kids are 4 years apart each, and they are good friends and have a solid bond. Many would say that’s a long gap. Who cares what they say?! I have a friend whose sister is 20 years younger. They are amazing friends, and I feel like it was a wonderful thing for her younger sibling to have a caring sister to stick handle through the shit you don’t want to share with your parents, but you need some adult-type advice. I’m not saying you should wait 20 years – that’d be crazy lol…. I’m saying, age aint nothin’ about bonding, and when you’re ready, you’ll know.

  2. Comparison is the thief of joy, as the saying goes. Don’t worry about what anyone else is or isn’t doing right now. You can only decide for yourself and your own family if and when the time is right 🙂

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