Should you have one last baby?
After having our eldest daughter, L, I kept being asked if we wanted to have a second child. Which was a no-brainer, of course we did. It just took us a while to get round to it.
6 years later we finally had our second daughter, C, and I was convinced I was done. Two children – perfect. But since C’s birth so many people have asked if we want a third.
I was so certain my pregnant days were over that I have sold all my maternity clothes and newborn paraphernalia.
But I still waver. Should I have one last baby?
Depending on what day you ask me my answer can be wildly different:
Absolutely no way!
Why is that?
Here are my theories:
It’s an age thing.
I’m 38, in a few years I won’t have the choice anymore. I will no longer be able to get pregnant. I will be too old. I like the fact I can still change my mind and have one last baby. For a little while anyway.
It’s a third child thing.
I’m the third child. I think subconsciously I’m wondering what would have happened if my parents had stopped at two. I wouldn’t be here. So maybe I feel the need to produce the equivalent of my place in the family.
It’s a big family thing.
I’m one of five, so can I just stop at two children? I LOVED growing up as part of a big family, should I deprive my girls of that?
It’s a sibling thing.
For some reason our daughters just work. They click. They’re mad about each other. Despite the 6 year age gap they play together and love each other like I never imagined possible. If they are so good together, how great would it be to add a third child into the mix?
It’s a multiplying of parental love thing.
When I was pregnant with C I could tell that Hubs was worried he wouldn’t love her as much as L. We’d been parents to just one child for over 5 years and she was our world. How could we love this new baby as much? But then C arrived and suddenly our love multiplied. So how cool would it be for that to happen again?
Then on the other hand I weigh up all the reasons not to have one last baby:
Statistically there are greater health risks for the mother and the baby the older you are.
Whilst our girls are really pretty easy, and were/are great sleepers it was far more tiring dealing with a newborn when I was 36 than when I was 30.
We might live in a house that can stretch to one more child, and we might not have a car that would need upgrading (vive London public transport!), but financially a third child putsk;l an extra strain on any budget.
L and C get on so incredibly well. What if an odd number throws all that. What if L gets left on her own while C and the youngest bond?
Fear of the unknown.
I’m not normally someone who’s afraid of taking risks, or stepping out into the unknown. But I had two straightforward pregnancies, one slightly complicated birth and one quick and relatively easy birth, both girls were dream babies and are pretty easy children now too. What if I’m tempting fate and a third baby tests us more than our relationship or our family can cope with? We’re so happy now, should we rock the boat?
When it comes down to it only Hubs and I can make that decision. I’m now saying “never say never” and instead of putting the rocker, pram and baby gym onto ebay I’ve put them in the loft for now. We still haven’t decided one way or another, but for the next couple of years I like that we’ve still got the option available.
What about you? Are you wavering about having one last baby? Were you unsure and then went ahead and had another one? I’d love to hear your stories in the comments below 🙂
Great post, it must be such a tough call – there’s so much to think about when considering having another baby. Me and the OH have said two is a good number (We have one 5 month old) but I do think I’d really love to have 3. I always wonder if I’m being greedy though? We’ll see how it goes I guess! 😉 x
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When we had our eldest I was 30 and thought I would have 4. Then it took us a long time to get round to having our second and by then I was tired and didn’t like the idea of going through it all again. Maybe that’s why I’m still not 100% convinced that I’m done.
We’re definitely done. I feel blessed to have had Curly Girl after four years of trying and fertility treatment on the other side of the world, and then Little Man came along completely miraculously without us having to do a thing (well, aside from the obvious natch!) I wouldn’t want to push our luck! Then there’s the age thing (I’m 41, he’s 49) and I agree with you that it gets more difficult as you get older too – I don’t miss those long, long nights and early mornings. Do I still get broody? Yes of course. I LOVE babies. But for us that time has past. Great post as always hun x
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Funnily enough I don’t ever really get broody, and I’m not really a baby person, but sometimes I do wonder whether there is a third little person waiting to join us….oh and by the way, you look way younger than your age! What’s your secret?!? xx
After my first child I felt completely satisfied and never imagined having any more children, I got rid of all the baby things. Then 5 and a half years later I got broody and we had our second baby, again I thought that was it and got rid of all the baby things, this continued to happen and now here I am at 37 and pregnant with my 7th baby. I could not be happier. I love my big family and seeing all the different relationships my children have with one another. I’m glad I’ve always trusted my instincts and just gone for it, life has turned out great!
So my advice to you is to just do what you feel is right at the time, everything else will fall into place. xx
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WOW! Just wow! I hadn’t realised that the 7 babies hadn’t all been planned from the get-go, I just assumed you’d always wanted a big family. Thinking about your big family makes me baulking at 3 seem laughable 😉 xx
Great post lovely! Not an easy decision is it?
From the day I gave birth to my twin daughters I was convinced that I never wanted any more kids. They were perfect, always played well together and I felt as though I’d been through enough. What I hadn’t factored in however was Mr A wanting a third baby when the girls were about 5!
After much discussion, we decided against having baby no 3 and adopted a rescue kitten instead!
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Thanks, it really isn’t! And since writing it and getting feedback I’m even more confused now. I would go down the rescue kitten route too but we already have a dog and 3 cats and I can’t see Hubs being happy about us getting any more! Funnily enough Hubs has a twin brother and no other siblings, his mum decided twin boys was enough 😉
So interesting as it’s always on my mind. Right now i’m a ‘NO WAY!’ but tbh i don’t quite think i can accept that i will never be pregnant again.
I’m one of 3 and that seems the normal for me so i just don’t know…watch this space i guess.
You should just DO IT!! 😉 x
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That’s EXACTLY where I was at not so long ago, and then a friend of mine has been wearing me down, meaning I literally have no idea now. If I just DO it, will you come round when said baby wakes up at night? Fab, thanks 🙂 x
We always planned to have more than one, but as you know, life very rarely goes to plan and at 41 years old, I am accepting our family will stop at 3. It’s a hard question for me to answer, because if I was younger, had not had a couple of miscarriages and was in perfect reproductive health then it would be a no brainer – of course we’d try for another. I do wonder if I will ever feel I am completely ‘done’ or if I will always feel our family is missing the two in the sky x
This comment brought tears to my eyes lovely lovely lady, there’s not much I can say to this sadly as it’s just so shit that this happened to you. Sending you masses of hugs, you are one of the fabbest people I know and it’s a pleasure and an honour to call you a friend xx
Gosh such a tough one and Sarah’s comment brought tears to my eyes. I waver like you, I feel beyond happy and grateful for two kids but I’m not ready for another baby and I don’t know if this will change. My husband doesn’t want another so obviously it’s a two way decision but who knows what the future holds, I say you will just KNOW when/if the time is right darling-a friend of mine had a baby at 47 x
Honest Mum recently posted…Getting Back to Yoga and Feeling Great
My difficulty is that Hubs would love a third, which does make me waver. If he wanted to stop at 2 I really don’t think I’d be questioning it at all. Anyway, time will tell….
I always said I was going to have 0 or 2 children so I haven’t been wanting a third and been quite happily giving away our baby things. I have been surprised that so many people have asked if we’ll have a third and that has lead to my OH thinking about it and he got vaguely interested. However, I’m not keen to go back to having disturbed nights.
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It is definitely hard going back to disturbed nights, as I discovered when we had a newborn 6 years after our eldest was born!
It’s a question I’m thinking about loads at the moment. I always wanted 3, but my (now ex) husband was adamant we were only having 2. I’ve got my 2 girls, but now also got a new partner who hasn’t got children of his own do we’ve talked a lot about it. Only downside is age, I’m nearly 41… do I really want to start again with sleepless nights and dirty nappies?? (secretly I think the answer I’d yes!)
I went back to sleepless nights and dirty nappies when I had a 6 year old, so was well past that stage. And honestly? No regrets. I think deep down you know what you want here….! Go for it 🙂
I always said I wanted three kids and I’ve got them. But when my daughter turned a year it started niggling away at me that I’d like another, but my husband had always said categorically no. The feeling has pretty much passed now I’m 41, but there’s still a part of me that regrets that we didn’t have another one a few years back.
Sarah MumofThree World recently posted…Lessons learnt
I think if Hubs didn’t want a third this thought would never have taken hold at all. But the fact is he would like another, and I don’t really have a strong reason not to, so, we’ll see…..!
I had 5 miscarriages before I had my eldest son, I wanted to stop there. Hubby wanted another, so we went again, and another son. Both were big babies (10lb +) and both had eczema, the second worse than the first.
I would have had a third, IF I could guarantee a girl, a small baby (7lb?) and no eczma. We couldn’t, so I didn’t. HOWEVER, having said all that, now I have gone through the menopause, I would have loved another one. Perhaps a big gap between 2 & 3, but I miss that smell of a new baby, the tiny hands, the cuddles. I don’t miss the sleepless nights, the tantrums, the cost!
I guess I just have to hope I am lucky enough to have grandchildren, then I get the good bits and hand them back for the bad bits!
At the end of the day, the decision is one that you will know when it is right to make and what it will be. Good luck.
Wow, 5 miscarriages, I can’t even begin to imagine. I had one before having our eldest, it was over 9 years ago but I still remember the heartbreak so clearly. I am worried that I will get to the menopause/no longer being fertile and regret not having that one last baby…..so we’ll see.
Hi, I have been thinking about baby a lot recently. Maybe is cos my age 39&3/4 or because my hubby’s so keen (he is 45next month). We have one 5year old and I feel I’m done.
However here is the thing, I wonder if it wasn’t better for her to have a sibling, so she is not on her own as we don’t have any family in the UK.
In many ways I’m scared if I can coope with two on my own, hubby travels a lot & also what if it’s not going to be healthy !! Or just like my daughter nightmare sleeper, that she still is!
So, yes, still got the pram etc & probably few months to decide!!
Good luck with your decision xx
Well there’s a 6 year age gap between our two girls and it was so much easier than I thought it would be, you get back into it really easily and the older child doesn’t need as much supervision so you can feed/nappy change without worrying what mischief they’re up to 😉 It’s so hard to know what to do but it sounds like you’re very tempted there….
Great read! I have a 7 year old and I’m approaching 32, after a difficult pregnancy and labour and a bad experience with my then employer I allowed myself through fear to talk myself out of having another, I couldn’t even let my OH persuade me. Its only as I feel I’m much more confident and wiser and have talked through my hangups (at length) that we are now seriously considering having another child. We love our daughter so much and we know she would make a fantastic sister, we shall see what happens! You have a beautiful family, good luck for the future, whatever you decide X
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It would be such a shame to let a bad experience stop you from having another child, I have so many friends who had horrific first birth experiences but then went on to have great second, third and more births. I highly recommend doing hypnobirthing if you do have another baby, this is who I used and would highly recommend:
Good luck with whatever you decide!
I waver so much on having a 3rd child. My kids now are 8 and 11MY husband and I waver so much on this. He is all for it. I overthink everything. After both of my children i had gone through such a bad phase of post partum depression. My life overall now at 31 is such in a better state (including marriage) that a part of me feels selfish for not wanting to give up my nights and and i finally got my body back. Is it wrong of me to want all these things and completely decline the idea of a 3rd baby? A big part of me wants a baby but i have all these factors that hold me back, that are more or so superficial. Any advice.
I think both of you have to be happy to go through with it or there is the risk of resentment. My other half would love for us to have a third baby, but I’m done now. I’ve finally decided. Good luck with this tough one x