When we undergo that journey they call motherhood, it could get to the point where we wonder how much love we have left to give. Not only this, but we have got to think about the practicalities of modern parenting. Some like the idea of having a whole collection of sprogs, but others feel that only two is enough, some even feel that one is plenty! But what is the real answer to this? For those parents that feel they need to expand their family, what are the things they have got to consider?
How Do You Both Feel (Really)?
Sometimes it's surprising, but the parents aren't always on the same page. When it comes to the practicalities of parenthood, especially if you've already got two children, there may come a point when one parent feels they are done with the late nights and long days. Naturally, there are things we can do to make sure we don't have children again, like getting to a vasectomy clinic, but before we get to this point we have to really discuss if we may want children 10 years from now. We might feel like it's a definite thing right now but we could very well change our minds further down the line. We both have to sit down and discuss, not just what we want right now, but if we are truly done with having children.
Can We Afford Any More?
It always comes down to cost, and if you feel like you want more children, but your bank balance is being stretched to its limit already, is it really fair on everyone? You have got to think about the cost of one child, and as the years go by the costs increase exponentially. Can you afford any more? You really have to look at your bank balance, your income, as well as your outgoings and see if it's really feasible. Sometimes that need to have another child overrides any common sense. It's only natural because we have this feeling within the core of ourselves that we need more children in our lives, maybe your son or daughter could benefit from having a brother or sister, and maybe you grew up with a sibling yourself so you feel that they need to experience this as well. And naturally, if you have one child, another one can create a sense of symmetry. But you have to look at these practicalities, especially when it comes to buying gifts. If you buy one child something, you’ll have to buy the other child something else. And before you know it you're relying on things like credit cards, and taking out personal loans. And as nice as it is to see your children on Christmas morning opening the presents they really want, is your bank balance going to struggle for the rest of your lives?
Could You Cope With Another Child?
It's something you need to ask yourself. If you spent a long time wading through diapers, cooking meals, and rushing around even before 6 am has hit, it's only going to increase. Having one extra child can feel like you have three more! It's important to think about your own ability to cope as parents and sometimes that need to have another child in a biological sense can soon become a thing of the past. We're proud of our children no matter what, but we all experience those moments where we just need to get away. It all becomes too much, and rather than feeling guilty about this, it makes us realize that we human. But we’re still going to think about if we can cope with having another child. Financially speaking, it's one thing, but when you've already got two or three children and then you add an extra one, you have got to think about the dynamics changing, and if your attention goes to this baby more than your other children, is it going to cause specific issues? We have to remember that when another child comes into the family, the other children can experience regressions. They can become jealous and behavioral issues can follow. And while this is natural, you still have to think about if you can cope with this in a physical and emotional sense. Being a parent is a 24-hour job, and when you add another child, it seems like there aren't enough hours in the day to do everything. Things can calm down eventually but you have to think about your own abilities to deal with the situation as well. Do you have the resources?
Why Do You Really Want Another Child?
We hear so much about band-aid babies, where they have a child because they think they can repair the relationship. A lot of people have had a child to fix the problems, but if they think having another child will make things better if they've already got children, will it exacerbate issues? Every couple experiences relationship problems, but if you think having another child will make things better, are you actually distracting yourself from the real issues? It's important to focus on the relationship. Having a child keeps you busy, and having another will keep you even busier. Does this mean that you will suffer? If you don't have time to even hang out with each other now, it's only going to increase for the next couple of years. While it's important to make time to be together without the children, if you want another child because you think it will help the relationship, you've got to get your priorities straight.
Sometimes having another child is a great thing for the entire family. but when you look at the practicalities, the emotional components, as well as the obstacles associated, it might prove to be a mountain that's difficult to climb. By no means is this a message to say don't ever have more children, but you sincerely need to make sure you know what you're getting into.