Adventures in Attachment Parenting: If three is a party is four a crowd? By Allison Silver
Do you remember when you first got married and everybody immediately started asking you when you were gonna have a baby? And then you had a baby and they started asking when you were gonna have a second child? Yep, that’s where we currently are. And it doesn’t help that all around me people are pregnant with their second child. Just this past month I found out that four of my friends from La Leche League are pregnant again plus two more moms from my moms group also announced that they are pregnant with their second child.
My husband and I are not ready to try again for at least another year. But lately I’ve been questioning whether we should even have a second child. It finally seems like we are at a place right now where life is beginning to feel normal again. Do you know that place? The place where you feel like you can actually take a shower and even cook a meal! We even went out to dinner a few weeks ago and we had a really nice evening, just the three of us. Now granted it was a local order at the counter pizza place but still it was enjoyable. My husband and I were both like, “Wow this is nice!” Lately, I have found myself thinking, “Do I really want to give up my new found feeling of normalcy to have a second baby?”
As I think about expanding our family I find myself wondering if having a sibling is important? Is having to share mommy and daddy with someone else beneficial? Will having a second child rock her world? And most importantly will it adversely affect my relationship with our daughter? There is the argument that “only children” are more selfish, self centered, and narcissistic. I’m not sure I buy that. I have been married to two men in my life (not at the same time mind you!). Both of these men were “only children.” My first husband was very selfish but I also think he had some major mental health issues, but don’t most ex-husbands? My husband now is a wonderful caring person who is not in the least selfish or self centered. He does not think the world revolves around him. Both were “only children” and both turned out so differently. But like anything I am quite certain the parenting styles that their parents used had more to do with their emotional development then having a sibling. But who knows. Maybe they would be completely different people if they would’ve had a sibling.
When I asked my husband what he thought about all of this he agreed that he would like to wait till next summer but he thought that it would be a good idea to try for a second baby since we already have all of the stuff and kinda know what we are doing. Isn’t that said like a real man! Since we have all of the stuff! It does make sense but in all honesty I think he is more excited about the trying part!
Me on the other hand, I don’t know what I want. I feel perplexed. In some weird way I kinda feel like since I gave up my career to be a full time mom I should probably have a second child. Why? I don’t know. Maybe i’m afraid people will think I have it too easy with just one kid! Then on the other hand I worry. What if we have another high needs baby. Could I meet the demands of both a toddler and a high needs baby? Would it be too much of a strain on my marriage? What I do feel fairly certain about is that I want my daughter to be a bit more independent before a new baby arrives. We are in a good place right now but she still needs mommy an awful lot.
This is where you come in dear readers. If you have an “only child” what made you decide to stop at one? And for those of you who have decided to have more then one, what made you decide to have a second or third child? Do you feel there are benefits to having more then one child? I would love to hear your thoughts.