Having two children or more that have a small age gap definitely could be beneficial. But the term better is inaccurate. First, we will discuss the benefits of a small age gap and then we will look at how a longer age gap could be beneficial. With most things within our world. There are not any right or wrong answers.
Instead, the world is full of those choices that are better suited to some, and not so much for others. It all comes down to personal preference and which lifestyle works out to be better for you as both an individual and as a family.
The benefits of a small age gap?
The benefits of having multiple children that are close together in age rely on the fact that they will likely share the same interests, and enjoy the same toys. This will help them to grow, learn and develop at a very similar pace. The slightly older child will help to educate their younger sibling, and at other times this could be tough in regards to sharing, and disagreements. But this is common law for most brothers and sisters.
If they both attend the same school, it’s also likely that they will look after each other. Being protective of the likes of bullies and will offer support to each other in general. Being of a similar age, despite their differences. They will be the best of friends when they are at home, insisting that most things will be done together.
As a parent, a small age gap could be easier in some ways but also more difficult in others. For example, two children that are both demanding their parent’s attention can be a stressful experience.
A negative of having multiple children in a short time is that the mother is unlikely to have replenished the nutrients that would have been lost during pregnancy and energy levels could remain low. As children get older they become more independent and could end up doing things by themselves. So let’s explore the benefits of a bigger age gap.
The benefits of a bigger age gap?
We have already discovered that a bigger age gap could provide you with less stress. This is mainly because the older child will be less dependant on their parents. It doesn’t end there; the older sibling would be more helpful in regards to helping their parents with the younger child.
Whilst having a bigger age gap will prolong the duties such as changing nappies and doing the school run for a longer time. It definitely will lighten the load. There are no right or wrong choices, just the choice of what is better suited to you.
Pregnant With My Second
I looked down at the two pregnancy tests, after numerous weeks of arguing with my partner and snapping at every little thing that went wrong. There they were, the two faint lines. Our daughter was only 6 months old at the time, how would I tell Ryan that I am pregnant again? How could I cope with raising two under 2? What will my family think? Could I love another baby, how will I pay for more nappies or deal with preeclampsia again.
All these questions ran through my mind, I was quickly emotional. My first initial thought was to get rid of the baby, which I didn’t, even though I was suffering from anxiety issues. As the weeks flew by, it became more real.
Moving house whilst pregnant
We had moved house, whilst I was in the early stages of pregnancy. Our families helped us move to our new home. My mum looked after our daughter while we got everything ready, making the house a home.
As months went by, becoming more settled and at our 20-week scan, we saw our perfect, healthy baby boy. “yay, one of each,” I said to myself.
Our families were excited, however, my body was struggling; I hadn’t let it rest, my weight was constantly fluctuating, my back, and legs would hurt because of pregnancy-related SPD.
As the due date was approaching, I was having regular checks on my blood pressure, bump growth, even urine samples: this was due to having preeclampsia with my firstborn. I was living in fear that it would happen again or that something terrible would go wrong as I had read plenty of horror pregnancy stories.
Going into labor with my second born
In the final week, I was showing signs of labor, I thought it was Braxton hicks but it wasn’t. it had started, although I was still far away from giving birth. After 2 am I was waddling around the house, unable to keep still. I was having contraction pains at 10-15 minute intervals, some pains were stronger than others.
I called my mum, and Ryan’s nan, then we headed to the hospital. After a few hours we were sent home as the labor was slow, I wasn’t dilating.
Around 8 pm the next day I was having very regular, and painful contractions. Starting to panic, feeling tons of pressure, and that the baby was going to be here very soon. After contacting the local hospital, they told me that there were no more beds available and that I would have to travel for 40 minutes to a different hospital.
I would also have to get my daughter collected and looked after by someone. There I was, standing outside my flat waiting for a babysitter and the ambulance. The gas and air carriage awaited, once at the hospital, I had my gorgeous son ‘Teddy’ just 10 minutes after arriving.
I had to stay in with my son because of a possible septic spot, which was found during his paediatric examinations. Despite it being completely fine, he was given a course of antibiotics as a precautionary measure as well as some blood tests. We were discharged, 4 days later.
Raising two kids under 2 years old
Bringing my second born home, was a very odd experience. My daughter who had been our only responsibility was now unable to have our hundred percent attention. I chose to breastfeed the baby, and Ryan was tired of looking after Olivia on his own. I felt as if we couldn’t give her as much love, affection as she was receiving before. As my milk came in, I become more emotional, I was regretting having another baby so quick, our baby girl couldn’t have us all to her self anymore, and was also being kept up at night with the crying due to us all sharing one room.
As months went on, we finally moved to a lovely house, with the most friendly neighbours. This is when it became easier raising two kids under 2 years old, I decided breastfeeding wasn’t allowing me to be the best mum, that I could be to Olivia. Bottle feeding seemed better, as other people could help me. As the kids grew together, they became the best of friends.
Raising two kids got easier
They play so well together, parenting became so much easier, as long as you have routine, you have everything! Getting enough rest, as a mother, and father is very important and shouldn’t be underestimated when they sleep you should too.
At the time of writing this my daughter is 5, and son is 4. It’s been a tough five years being a mum, and I know it doesn’t stop here. You can’t even go to the toilet, without little visitors by your side asking “mummy what are you doing” and “mummy I need the toilet”.
This is not something you want to hear when you have IBS (Irritable bowel syndrome), and cannot get off of the toilet as it is. This age they are both at is one of the hardest yet. They both are having bad tantrums, fighting with each other but we will get through it. It’s what us parents do, ‘we cope’. My main advice is to: rest up when you can, stay in contact with your friends, breathe, ask for help, and never give up because you are strong, and you can do this.