“One and done” or “Two and Through”?

Our daughter is already 2 ½ years old and lately I have been feeling some pressure, not from anyone in particular, to think about having another child. One side of me is happy with just her, yet the other side wants to have another. Maybe it’s because I don’t want her to experience the negatives of being an only child like me.

Don’t get me wrong, there were many, wonderful times when I enjoyed being an only child, such as getting spoiled as a little girl and having my own room. However, as I grew older, I became lonely and really wanted a “permanent friend.” My parents are not getting any younger, in fact, they are starting to have health issues (none serious thank God), and it’s a lot of mental pressure to be the only one taking care of them. I wish I had a sibling to lean on and share personal things with, that only siblings understand.

We’ve been going through a lot lately with renovating our house and it’s probably not the best time to be talking about it with my husband. When he’s not working or at the firehouse, he’s fixing up our house. Why would he want another child right now? And that’s exactly what he says.

Last week I talked with him about it and he said he never thought he would be the one to say, “one and done.” Yet, deep down inside he doesn’t want our daughter to be an only child. I looked at him and said we are not getting younger, that if we don’t have another in the next few years, she might just be an only child. I guess time will tell. Also, part of me doesn’t know if I want to go through the newborn stage again, particularly the sleepless nights (selfish I know). I have no idea if I can handle two and there’s no turning back when I get pregnant. What scares me is that unlike when you purchase a new outfit, babies do not come with receipts. You can’t return them, they are yours for life.

17 thoughts on ““One and done” or “Two and Through”?

  1. No guarantees they will be close or will be equal partners in caring for their parents or ANYTHING. But you know how much you love your daughter and enjoy her every stage? You will feel the same way with #2. So the bottles and diapers are multiplied but so is the joy. My kids grew up to be people whose company I enjoy more than anyone else on earth.

  2. I wanted my son to have a sibling to have someone to depend on when things got tough. My second was a much better sleeper making the newborn stage easier, but bottles and diapers and all is just as much work. 3 year gap meant my son was almost potty trained by the time she came. Upside (and downside) time seems to go by twice as fast, my second baby is somehow almost 4. It has been tiring, but I wouldn’t change a thing.

  3. I think about this all the time! My son is 3.5 and sometimes I feel like I could totally handle another and sometimes I feel like it would ruin me. I have a lot of anxiety and my husband works a lot, so much of the time it’s just me, and I worry that a second would put me over the edge. But as I learn to handle my anxiety better and try to think long term, I think I would like another. Or more specifically, I would be happy with just one, but would be excited if I got pregnant and try not to worry (ha!). So I’m leaving it up to fate/God and we’ll see what happens! I’ve also thought about adopting a slightly older child to avoid the infant stage (not a fan), but the cost is prohibitive and my husband isn’t on board. Whatever happens – good luck!

  4. The timeliness of this post is amazing. My husband and I have been having this discussion lately. Our daughter is 2.5 as well, and we both have siblings. I am much closer to mine and really value the sibling relationship/friends they are to me. I really cannot see our daughter being an only child, but at the same time, things are great the way they are. The newborn stage with a toddler scares me. The cost of raising 2 children scares me. The thought of even less time with my husband scares me. But, in my heart, I know I have room to love more and provide my daughter with someone she may (or may not) always have to share our family life with. Oh the decisions!

  5. You have written about a subject that is narrated daily in my head, especially as friend after friend announce “#2 is on the way.” My daughter is also 2.5 and I fear will someday want a sibling, if nothing more than someone to share the “burden” of aging parents. My husband is done (having 2 children from a previous marriage, in another country) despite a commitment to at least 2 before I agreed to marry him. I grew up as a pseudo-only child (10+ year age gap between me and next sibling.) Yes, going on trips and being spoiled was a real treat but I would have given anything to have a sibling who was sharing real-time experiences. This dilemma has even brought me to thoughts of divorce (as this is the solution given by my husband for me to have a 2nd.) I envy that you can at least have the open and honest conversation with your husband. Good luck.

    1. Sheila, im so sorry to hear your frustrations..do you think it would help to go talk to someone with your husband..i.e. a therapist? they really can make communication a lot better.

  6. I have struggled with this lately myself. My daughter is approaching 2 and I’m getting that same feeling of pressure. My hubby and I have discussed it ad nauseum lol. He has three siblings; two older, one much younger. My brother and I are 2 years apart. We discussed how we felt growing up and how life is now with our siblings. My brother and I fought so hard when we were younger, I thought we might kill each other. And while we are much friendlier now, we aren’t the best of friends and I still remain the “older” responsible sibling when it comes to caring for my dad and being the one to organize things. My hubby and his siblings aren’t close and they all live in different states.

    So while we do feel that sometimes, our daughter will be lonely…we also know that providing a sibling isn’t an automatic guarantee that they will have an awesome relationship. Sometimes it happens – that’s a blessing. My hubby and I also both come from broken families with long histories of drug abuse and mental illness. We are working as hard as possible to be the ones to break the chain. Maybe we’d be closer with our siblings had those issues not been present, maybe not. We just know that God gave us what we could handle and feel comfortable with our choice 🙂 I hope that peace finds you in a decision soon 🙂

  7. I felt the same as you about two years ago and was finally just like well, it’s now or never. It took 8 months to get pregnant with my first so in my head, I didn’t really think it would even happen. But hmm nope – it took exactly 3 days to get pregnant with #2. Honestly, I didn’t like being pregnant the second time and I didn’t like the newborn stage the second time but I adore my lil nugget just the same as his big sis and can’t imagine our lives without him. Good luck with whatever choice you make! 🙂

  8. You know what they say “new house, new baby!” :). Seriously though, dont let fear stop you from having #2…you are so much more prepared and experienced the second time around. Plus, your little girl will be old enough to be a helper. Trust your instinct, though, no matter what. Congrats on the new house!!!

  9. I’ve wondered this same thing myself. I think at this point we probably are done with one but there’s still a part of me that wishes my girl had a sibling.

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