Okay, so you’re sitting staring at your toddler/pre-teen and feeling proud that you were able to raise such a wonderful being. You’re seriously thinking about going down that road again.
Oh, the joys! Those stubby arms gleefully reaching for you, that lovely baby smell, those wet kisses, those toothless, gummy smiles, the outstanding book report. Then you also remember the broken toes, grazed shins and knees, the sleepless nights, teething, the damaged furniture and the almighty tantrums, and suddenly you’re not so sure.
Continue reading for some advantages and disadvantages of having a second child. Hopefully by the end of reading this article, you are able to make a decision about what’s best for you and your family.
Benefits For You When Having A Second Child
It’s Easier The Second Time
Having experienced pregnancy once before, you can feel confident going into it the second time around. You already know what to expect at each trimester, each doctor visit, and at the birth.
You Can Recycle Items Used By The Older Sibling
You can reuse some of the clothes, shoes, furniture and toys used by the older child particular if they are of the same sex. This would provide tremendous cost savings especially if they are close in age.
You Get To Do It All Over
You get to experience all the firsts all over again. The first step, tooth, word, fall, first day of school. You get to cuddle them, and they won’t refuse your kisses or hugs. You’ll just simply enjoy being a new mom again.
Benefits For The Kids When Having A Second Child
They Will Always Have Each Other
Siblings are usually a child’s first friend and maintain lifelong bonds. They can rely on each for support even after you’ve passed on or just simply not around at the time for whatever reason. They will also serve as each other’s entertainment (albeit not all the time) so you can at least enjoy the few fleeting moments of peace, since they won’t be bothering you. Additional bonus, your first born won’t grow up lonely or spoilt.
It Teaches Valuable Life Lessons
Your children will learn to play/work with others, sharing, conflict resolution and other vital life skills at home before interacting with other kids at school.
Your First Child Can Assist
Depending on the age difference between the two children, your first child can help you care for your second child. They can make bottles, change diapers, burp them and babysit (depending on their age) which frees you up to take care of other duties around the house you may have been neglecting. The older child can also help with homework. This gives the older child a sense of responsibility and teaches them how to be selfless and care for others, and to work as part of a team.
Why Having A Second Child Might Not Be So Great For You
You Will Be Tired… A Lot
From pregnancy (especially in the final trimester) through to after birth, you will constantly feel tired. You won’t be able to get a full night’s rest for a while to come. Babies, especially newborns, require lots of attention – they are a lot fussier, constantly need to be fed and never seem to sleep. You will also find that you’ll have less time to spend on yourself and the things you enjoy.
The cost of child rearing is becoming greater and greater. Whilst you have the advantage of recycling some items from having your first born, items such as diapers and formula can’t be recycled. With two children that need feeding, clothing, schooling, toys and extra activities, your financial burden will be greater. If you stick with one you may be able to offer them more luxuries in life, like exotic vacations or private schooling, if this is something important to you. Do you have the right support network? If you are a working mum or are planning to go back to work at some point you need to think about how you will arrange childcare.
You Get To Do It All Over
Oh the joys of morning sickness, back pain and always being tired. Need we say more?! The truth is, having more children isn’t for everyone.