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Thread: when is the best age gap for second child?

  1. #19

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    wow, thanks so much for everyones honest answers and opinions, you have all helped me out so much!! When DS was born we swore we would never put ourselves through all that again, then at 6 months we started trying for another one, last month i started stressing out heaps about how i would cope with pg/new baby and Archie so I told DH i wasn't ready and i bought the pill. Two days ago i thought maybe i was just being silly and i should stop taking the pill and just get another baby 'over and done with'. after reading all of your situations and opinions, i have decided that a bigger age gap is right for me. DH feels that he is getting too old for babies (he is only 30) so i hope he will let me have a couple more years. i can't wait to do it all again, but for the sake of my sanity and our finances (or lack of) we will definately be waiting a while.



    Thanks again everyone you have all helped me make a big decision

  2. #20

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    What a great thread, we are oging htrough this exact thing at the moment, I just keep flip flopping. I would like to have a another baby before July 2008 because I only want my babies to be 2 years apart at school (just a personal thing, no real rhyme or reason as too why) but I can't decide whether we should start trying so we have a baby early 2008 or wait a little longer and have it towards the middle of the year- meaning we will have somewhere between 19 months and 2 years between our 2. My main aim before I have another baby is to get myself really healthy, loose some weight and hopefully feel a lot better in myself during my pregnancy.

  3. #21

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    Ali - i think 2 years is a great gap too for the kids sake, but like you i really want to get a whole lot fitter and healthy. I didn't enjoy being pregnant with Archie due mainly to lack of finances. i wnat to be able to wear clothes that make me feel gorgeous next pregnancy and i want to be able to have a better go at breast feeding, i think with the exhaustion of a new baby and small toddler breast feeding wouldn't be as much of a success as i would like.

    do you absolutely not want a bigger gap than 2 years? Im guessing you got pg with tori quite quickly, if you really don't want a biger age gap maybe starting to ttc now wouldn't be such a bad idea in case it takes a few goes????

    Anyway whatever you decide, goodluck im sure Tori will love her new baby no matter what the age gap

  4. #22

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    Neverplan- They have changed school enrolments over her in the past 5 or so year so that a child starts the year they turn 4 unless their birthday is after june 30 and then they start the year they turn 5. I guess being a school teacher I find it confussing have some kids in year 1 who are 6 and some who are 7.
    Widdly- It took me exactley 3 days to get pregnant with Tori, hence the reason we are not going to start trying until we are absolutley ready. I know that it doesnt necissarily mean that it will happen this time, but Iwould hate to start trying before I was ready and get pregnant.
    I guess the other thing for me with the age gap thing is there is 2.5 years between my brother and I and we have never been particularly close, we get along OK now, but when we were growing up we didnt have much in common. Where as with DH there is 16 mnths between him and his sis and then 20mnth between her and his youngest brother and they are all really close, and grew up doing heaps of stuff together, and i would like that for my kids too.

  5. #23

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    I think sometimes closeness between siblings can be based on personality not just age gap, DH is 13 months younger than his sister and had a lot of trouble growing up as she bullied him and completely dominated him. When he started school after a few weeks the school had to insist they be in different areas at breaks because his sister spoke for him and he followed her around and didn't make any friends of his own. They are not particularly close now and never speak on the phone or anything. On the other hand my brother is 4 years younger than me and we have always been close, even more so as adults, we are very good friends and we will call each other regularly. I know I am biased towards longer gaps (maybe not as radical as mine LOL) but its worth thinking about.

  6. #24

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    I agree that friendships between siblings has alot to do with personalities as well as age gaps, but I think that you are going to get that in siblings anyway despite the age gap. I guess that is why it comes back to the whole what ever is right for each family. There are pro's and con's to both.

  7. #25

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    I agree that it is about personality too, but age gap can be a factor. There is 6.5 years between my youngest sister and I (there is one in the middle, 3 years younger than me). We never had anything in common growing up as I was in grade 6 when she was in prep. We weren't at high school at the same time at all. We were at such different stages. We get along well now (although she is overseas so we rarely see each other) but as kids we loved each other, but didn't really play together or anything. I guess that's something to consider, that it's not just the gap between any two siblings, but also the gap between oldest and youngest.

  8. #26

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    Unfortunately this decision is sometimes taken out of our hands. I had hoped to have approx 2 yrs between baby no. 1 & baby no. 2 & this was going to plan beautifully until I had a m/c at 12 wks in Aug 06. Now I am TTC baby no. 2 again & find as each month goes by I am getting more apprehensive as the age gap widens. Hopefully it will happen soon & there will be 2.5 -3 yrs max age gap.
    I agree with all the other ladies though - it is such a personal choice. Had I known what was going to happen to me I would have started TTC no. 2 a lot earlier than we did. Hindsight eh.......

  9. #27

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    this definately is a personal choice. when my eldest was 5 months we decided to try for another to everyones horror! we fell prego straight away and my gorgeous boys are 13 months apart. my plan was always to have two as close as possible then wait till the third. my eldest is now 4 and about to start kindy and we about to start ivf for number 3!(we had natural pregnancies with the first two). I am looking forward to time with Cody my 3 year old as we havent had much one on one and if we are blessed with number 3 they should both be at school, so i get more one on one with bubs. my thought was that while Thomas was a baby i may as well have another because i wasnt getting much sleep and thought two bubs would be manageable.plus i didnt want to get too used to sleeping through myself! my boys entertain each other, share clothes and toys and im sure they still fight just as much as any other siblings. family outings are great because they both get to understand and enjoy things together, but DH and i do get run off our feet with two active boys. hope my rambling has made sense and im sure you'll work out whats best for you!

  10. #28

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    First of all, I agree that this is such an individual thing that's it great to read how everyone decided!

    Second of all, can you believe how lucky some of us are to be able to 'plan' the gap between our children when there are so many ppl out there who would just give anything to be able to conceive?! DP and I often comment on how fortunate we are to be thinking of things like gaps, we know friends who have taken over three years to conceive (#1 & #2 though - they're having twins! Identical, not IVF, God must have smiled at them).

    In our case, we decided on more than three years, but less than five. Ideally four, but we'll probably start TTC when Lucy is about 3 - 3 1/2. Our reasons are nothing new, I so love the toddler stage and would love to be able to do some of the fun things with Lucy on our own. Then, by the time she is starting to be more independent and probably goes to preschool I will have another baby. She'll have her own thing going and won't mind the 'intrusion' at the beginning quite so much. I hope. (Can you tell I'm an oldest child and asked my parents to take my first sister back to the hospital when she was a week old?? LOL)

    By the same token I want to be able to do the same thing with #2, really enjoy the baby stage (which I have with Lucy) without constantly running around after a toddler. And if we go for #3 (I'm working on convincing DP) I'd like the same gap again. Obviously, I'm only 29 (for another couple of weeks) so I have the luxury of being able to fit in all of the kids I want b4 my clock starts winding down (and my patience!).

    DP and his older brother by 3 yrs got along off and on as kids, but his brother used to beat him up really badly and they've had heaps of issues as adults 'cause of the competitiveness between them. I am close in age to my sisters (2 years between each of us) but fought as much as played with them as a kid and 'ditched' them for other friends once I was at school! (I'm not that awful a big sister, I promise!) I love them dearly now, but even though we're close in age it feels like we might as well be a decade apart, we aren't at the same stage in our lives AT ALL. Probably because I met my DP at 22 and settled down a bit more quickly.

    Hope everyone gets to build the family they want! It's a beautiful thing to have children, no matter what the gap or the reasoning. And I don't know of many ppl who wouldn't want their siblings when they're all grown up.

  11. #29

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    For me, I will wait for a 4 year gap between #2 and #3. I have 2.5yrs between mine, and when the second was born, I had more problems with the 2.5 year old than the newborn! Now one is 4 and one is 2, and I do love them to bits - it's dealing with 2 year old tantrums and 4 year old attitude and defiance at the same time drives me up the wall LOL So I will wait longer next time, I am lucky in that I have the age luxury, and look forward to having a newborn when the youngest understands a bit more and the eldest wants to get involved - she's put her order in for a sister.

    I think it's often something you don't know until you've had them and seen how it's panned out - I wanted them close together at first, as many seem to do, but I do wish I waited a little longer. Not that I would change it for a thing of course
    Kelly xx

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  12. #30

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    Hey All
    Yes, this is definately a personal decision. My down syndrome brother and I are 5.5 years apart (me being the eldest) and we are really good friends. I guess it is different for me, but I have never really wished for another sibling, just accepted there was just us and made the most of it. I do think that 5 years is too much, cause the eldest ends up looking after the youngest and not exactly 'growing up' with them. I am pg with my first and have no intention of 'thinking' about a second one til ages, but who knows how I will feel at that point in time. There are disadvantages and advantages to every age group, but in the end, I don't think it is that detrimental to the child's education and learning. Just nice growing up with a sibling i guess. My friend and her bro are 15 months apart and they are pretty close. It is nice to enjoy the first one for as long as you can, since it is a life changing experience. Good luck with your decisions girls!

  13. #31

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    It really is interesting to see so many points of view. Interestingly Kelly, reading your experience I was thinking "yes, it's difficult bcos 2.5 years is a big gap". But from your perspective it's too small a gap! LOL!! I have just found from my own experience and those of others, that when no 1 is around the 18 month mark or younger, there doesn't seem to be much jealousy, whereas those that have 2 - 3 years (just people I know IRL) have found no 1 has been jealous. But the one thing I totally agree on, is that there is no right answer on this. Different things work for different people.

    And I must add that I also feel incredibly blessed that things went to plan for me. I also know many people who haven't been so lucky. Really we shouldn't take this for granted.

  14. #32

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    I had a particularly unsettled and anxious daughter though, so while less may have worked well, it was her personality too. I think she will cope better in future. You just never know
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children

    BellyBelly Birth & Early Parenting Immersion - Find out how to have a BETTER, more confident birth experience... guaranteed!
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  15. #33

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    There is no RIGHT OR WRONG in regards to this at all. Its personal choice. Mine are all 20 months apart and I wouldnt have it any other way. My eldest is 6 then 4 then 3 and they are the greatest of friends. it wasnt hard, my eldest never missed out. i do think my middle daughter didnt get much in the way of 1 on 1 but she is a brilliant child who adores her sisters so nothing wrong there. As for coping. I think this time round is going to be HARD for me. When #4 is born my youngest will be about to turn 4. Which means school and kindy runs. UGHH. But I personally needed the break, for my body and sanity LOL.
    But I plan on popping out #5 ASAP after #4 comes into the world. Probably around 12 - 18 months age gap. Then I am done lOL. I cannot have just this one more, I dont think it wil be fair on her to not have the closeness with a sibling like all her big sisters have (Gees why do I suspect YET ANOTHER GIRL??)
    So personally I like CLOSE ages. I was 18 months younger than my brother and we grew up the closest of friends and still are. We shared all our adventures and it was fantastic. I want my children to have that. To have the ready made playmate at home. Besides I always planned on stopping once I hit the big 30 so times a ticking.

    As for big age gaps. I can see the benefits but for me it wasnt suitable. I want to be home with my children in their early years. I dont use childcare. So having them close allows me to put aside a few years, have the masses of children I so desire without taking myself away from the work force for over 10 years. Mind you it probably will be 10 years but hey........... Atleast staying home with 3-4 kids is actually financially the better alternative LMAO.

    Each to their own. Dont let anyone tell you when how or why.

  16. #34

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    My feelings I guess are based on me & my bro. He is nearly 5 yrs older than me, and when we were young, we had such separate lives, and he and his friends were horrible to me. LOL. Teenage years, we got on surprisingly well! Then - he married an awful woman, and we hardly speak now Nothing really nasty between us, but we've been divided by my SIL iykwim.

    So we're planning a 2yr age gap (providing the ttcing works to plan!)

    Oh another thing with the 5yr age gap - my bro started school about 3 weeks after I was born, and had a lot of issues about going to school, and mum reckons it was him feeling like he wasn't wanted around the house now that there was a new baby. Who knows the psychology behind it all hehe. I might add tho, that mum & dad tried for me for a few years, so the big age gap wasn't intentional. Another reason I dont want to wait is incase we take time falling pg.

    DP and I often comment on how fortunate we are to be thinking of things like gaps, we know friends who have taken over three years to conceive
    I dont' consider myself fortunate just yet - who knows what lies ahead! I'm officially in my 30's now (31!! I didn't count 30 LOL) and the clock has well and truly started ticking. I read somewhere that a lot of women think that their fertility remains the same during their 30's (something to do with women putting off childbearing until they have a career etc) but it really isn't, so I don't want to risk waiting a couple of years only to find out our fertility has dropped.

  17. #35

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    Hi!

    Great topic - obviously how we were raised and what siblings we have plays a huge role in our decision making!!

    I will have 18m gap between 1 & 2! I can't really comment yet I don't know how I'll feel! I'm excited though and I did want the kids to be close in age so I'm happy about that. I know I'll cope because we all manage to somehow!!

    Growing up my brother was older by 7y and my sister older by 9y so of course I hate big age gaps!! We never all played together and my brother used his power over me which I hated!! He was bigger and stronger and there was nothing I could do about bascically. My sister was getting engaged and married when I was around 8-12yo so we were so far removed from each others lives....
    Anyway, as adults I get along with both of them ok although probaby more so with my brother now as we're at the same lifestyle stage. He hasn't met his partner until later and they're about to have their first bubba so our age gaps closed as such...My sister has older kids and has divorced so again very far removed from me...

    I guess I figure if I have my kids closer there is more chance that they'll be friends even though I know it will come down to personality as well....

  18. #36

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    Mummyto1, I'm in the exact same situation as you - I wanted a small gap between my children and fell prg with #2 when DD was 12 months. Unfortunately we too had a m/c at 12 wks in March 06 and after a lot of drama, have just started IVF.

    It's now totally out of my control and that is very hard to accept at times.

    I hope we both have #2 on the way VERY soon!!

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