Having a second child ‘for a break’!?

(39 Posts)
stickygotstuck Fri 31-Aug-12 21:23:03

Sounds mad, doesn?t it?

BUT I am actually considering having another DC to alleviate the intensity of having an only.

For background, I have one 3.8 YO DD. Beginnings were tough and I am approaching 40, so from her birth both I and DH have been slowly making the decision that we are happy with the one. It?s not a firm decision yet, but we are almost there.

Now, my DD is a lovely child, and I am sure many people think of her as a easy child. However, I would describe her as emotionally intense, from day one. She is also extremely inquisitive and chatty, and frankly she wears me out mentally! So much so that I am considering having a second one to take some of the pressure off!

Anybody here ever feels like this? Anyone actually had another for similar reasons, after thinking you wouldn?t? Is this a typical stage in a 3 YO which will pass? SOON?? Or rather, is it a sign of things to come forever (which I am not sure I am best suited to)?

ChoccyJules Fri 31-Aug-12 22:12:32

We do of course immerse her in groups and friendships and she goes to day nursery while I work part-time. So she is very much able to mix.

But recently she longs for a sibling. Apparently if Mummy isn't going to have a baby she's going to do it!

stickygotstuck Fri 31-Aug-12 22:17:33

Uncanny, Choccy, that's what she said to me!
But she's stopped mentioning the idea of a sister now.
Mind you I did say she was a bit too young. She just looked at me as if I was thick and said "when I'm big like you mummy!"

Longtallsally Fri 31-Aug-12 22:25:54

Sticky, I get exactly where you are coming from, too! I had always wanted more than one, but started rather late. DS1 was born when I was 38. He is gorgeous, but yes, very intense, very chatty/intelligent/enquring.

I was worried about coping with a second child, after 40, but ds2 came along at 41. And it did the trick. It was hard work having two little ones for the first five years, particularly as neither were very good sleeprs but actually from day 1, ds1 became much more content. He loved being a big brother, and helping out, and ds2 quickly benefitted from a routine involving school runs/watching his big brother play etc.

It's still exhausting, but the bigger age gap helped, I think, and they still get on well - most of the time. DS2 is less intense than DS1, but ds1 has chilled out a bit too (though when they were aged 2 and 5 I did one 3 hour car journey with them on my own and nearly abandoned them en route. 3 hours of non stop discussion as to why X was X and not Y, why sheep were white, why I had to indicate, I still shudder to remember! So avoid small spaces, and best of luck!)

HTH

stickygotstuck Fri 31-Aug-12 23:38:48

Your story is very encouraging Sally.

Sorry, your car journey from hell made me laugh - so familiar, and I only have the one!

WerthersUnOriginal Sat 01-Sep-12 22:21:28

Ive got 3 and there's been no dilution in intensity. We just have intensity x 3grin

It takes different forms as they get older though. Teens can be emotionally intense and mentally exhausting by what they don't say.

nooka Sat 01-Sep-12 22:39:19

I have two pretty intense children (if by intense you mean deep thinkers and big talkers!). dd came along by accident when ds was 8mths so we never really got to think about it too much. Once the pain of babyhood was over (I'm not a baby person) they have been excellent company for each other and I guess that gives dh and I a fair amount of downtime, and listening to the two of them is great fun. They are now 13 and 12 and amazingly good friends, but there is no guarantee of that, I think it is slightly dangerous to assume that siblings will automatically get on together.

I think the other thing to bear in mind is that if you are only now thinking about having another child there will be a significant big age gap and they may not have very much in common.

I wonder if you are just finding her hard work because of her age? I remember around 4ish being very intense (maximum tantrums for us). Once she is a little older you will also be able to change the mix by having her friends around and also your interest will probably converge a bit more so her intenseness will be more rewarding to you.

Less Sat 01-Sep-12 22:43:08

Hmm, I understand your reasoning, but think as your age gap is likely to be c. 5 years, they won't be playmates for each other, so in terms of their demands on you, you'll effectively have 2 "onlys" You'll also have 1 child at home full-time just as you're getting DD1 off to school...

Having another (or not) will be lovely, but, I'm not sure this should be your reason.

You mentioned this but as an only child one thing I would have loved a sibling for was to take the intensity away from me. When my mum was in a bad mood or my parents fought, I had no one to sort of share it with or laugh it off with (these were rare events btw!) So to some extent these became huge dramas that they shoukdnt have been. As my parents get older I'm aware that ill be the one helping to make decisions about health care and possibly personal issues and ultimately making decisions for them, maybe. Dh will help but the level of emotional involvement I have or a sibling would have is not there.

Not reasons in themselves to have no2. I had a happy childhoold, lots of friends, holidays with cousins etc. Just maybe points to consider.

Gilberte Sat 01-Sep-12 22:52:01

My DD1 is very intense, chatty etc. I spent 3 years devoted my time and energy to entertaining her. Then I had DD2 and it turned DD1's world upside down. DD1 (4) spends a lot of time trying to "kill"- her words- DD2 (18mths) and frequently asks me to do the same.

It is slowly getting better and they do have moments when they are starting to play together/ interact with each other more pleasantly but I found the intensity of my relationship with DD1 only made the sibling issue more difficult.

Born2bemild Sat 01-Sep-12 22:59:22

I have fairly intense dc. They do a lot of bickering, that is all I will say. grin

stickygotstuck Mon 03-Sep-12 16:22:47

Oooh, more responses, great, thanks all! Sorry I've disappeared for a couple of days.

nooka yes, that's exactly what I mean, deep thinkers and big talkers! Your age gap would have literally finished me off, hats off.
And yes, my own background makes me very aware that siblings won't necessarily get on.

Both your point and Less's point about the age gap thing is interesting - I don't consider 4-5 years a big age gap. I am positive that anything less would simply be madness in my case. I have one sibling and there are 8 years between us. We are not close but we never would have been even if the gap had been 9 months, we are that different as people and the jealousy was pretty terrible. Frankly, that's one of the reasons that has put me off having any more so far.

Stealth, yes, that's my main worry, leaving poor DD to cope alone with my own intensity and that of the family unit in general.

Gilberte, that't crossed my mind, having a second may be too much of an upset to DD (as you can probably gather from the jealousy comment above!). Somehow I don't think she would be that way inclined, but you never know until you get there.

Werthers and Born2bemild, you two sound firmly in the "I have more than one of those" camp!

So, I'm still non the wiser. All I now is, I don't have an overwhelming all-consuming desire to have a baby. I'm not a baby person. If they arrived aged 1 onwards, it would be an easier decision ;-)

Do most people here think 5 years is a big gap??

FarrowAndBollock Tue 18-Sep-12 23:56:09

I have 3 and am definitely a better mother for having more than one. I am an over-thinker and would have been too intense for just poor DS1. I would have over worried and been a complete pain! Good luck with whatever you decide.

GateGipsy Sat 22-Sep-12 20:55:37

Not many people with one child here?

OP, you say you feel like things are complete with just one. If that's the case then stay with how you feel. I have one, and he is now 7. At 3.8 they do make you follow them about - they feel that really you're an extension of them. They grow out of this. It does get much easier. And there's absolutely no guarantee that two children will occupy each other. I've a friend with two who tries to arrange a sleepover for one of them nearly every weekend as it seems that it is only when there's three in the house that the two siblings stop fighting with each other.

Mollydoggerson Sat 22-Sep-12 21:00:38

My two rile each other up. 4 and 3 yrs

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