Are you and your other half toying with the idea of having a second baby? The chances are that you are not the only people with an opinion about your family planning. Ultimately, only you two will know if you really want another baby, and if so when. Here are some points you may like to ponder.
Would you like to have several children close in age, or would you prefer a larger age gap? There is no such thing as ideal child spacing, but there just may be such a thing as the ideal choice for your particular family. If your child is already a bit older, you won’t get the chance to consider spacing your kids close together any more. Those who still have a tiny one can think about this question in detail.
To get a clearer view on what you would really like, discuss your emotions as well as practical pros and cons of various age differences with your partner. Talk about how various age gaps may affect your career and parenting choices, for instance. If you are struggling to make the write decision, you can write your thoughts down on paper. Ask friends with children of various ages for advice, if need be.
Is your body ready?
Your body may have physically healed from the act of childbirth after about six weeks, but you will need more time than that to return to your pre-pregnancy physical condition and perhaps weight. Moms who have had a cesarean section may be advised to wait longer than those who went through uncomplicated vaginal deliveries. Moms of little babies or toddlers additionally do a lot of running around, and may be exhausted if they get pregnant. Those who have busy, physically demanding jobs may feel the same way.
Before you take the plunge and start trying for baby number two, consider whether your body is ready for a pregnancy. If you are not sure, having a preconception check-up is definitely a good idea — this exam isn’t just for first-timers!
Would baby number two break the bank?
Will baby two break the bank? That depends on a large number of factors. Examine them all. Do you need to pay for childcare facilities? Do you intend to send all your children to a private school? Would you like to offer your kids extracurricular activities? Would you need to move to a larger home to comfortably house two kids? What if you deal with unforeseen medical problems? Are you planning to pay for your kids’ college costs?
In other words, there are tons of questions to look at when it comes to the financial impact of a second baby. Look beyond the baby stage, which can definitely be done cheap. Take a look at the kind of life you want for both kids from birth to adulthood. Sure, life is unpredictable, but assessing what your financial situation will likely be after you have another kiddo is certainly a helpful exercise. Nobody is suggesting that money should be the deciding factor in your decision-making process, but “where three can eat, so can four” may not be a satisfactory answer if you want to give your kids more than food on the table .
Finances are important, but can you afford to wait for much longer? A woman’s fertility rapidly begins to decline once she hits 35. Don’t convince yourself that you have plenty of time if you are over that age. Those couples who are very sure that they would love another child, but think the timing is not ideal, may want to think again. When the timing is ideal (if such a thing ever even happens), it may be too late and you may not be able to conceive. Or at least not naturally.
Having a baby naturally may disrupt your finances, but fertility treatment is not exactly cheap either. Unless you are still in your twenties, you will want to consider that your biological clock is ticking and may explode at some point in the near future.
Do you want another baby… really badly?
Family planning shouldn’t exclusively be about your heart. I would love another baby, but we decided to stop at two for various reasons — including medical and financial ones. But emotions undeniably play a very, very important role in deciding whether to have another baby. If you and your partner agree that you are happy with one child, you can stop right there. You are probably not in that boat, or you would not be reading this post.
Do you want another baby really badly? Now may well be the best time to go for it.