Is One Really the Loneliest Number?

I am so confused. My husband and I keep talking about when to start trying for another child, but it seems like we always have an excuse. My sister is getting married in July and I don't really want to be pregnant for that. We don't have enough money. We don't have enough room. Yada, yada, yada!

I just don't know what to do. Part of me says, screw it, none of that really matters. There's never a 'right' time to have a baby. There's always going to be an excuse for why it's better to wait. But, the longer I wait, the less and less I feel like I'm going to want one. Having a toddler is pretty cool, minus the tantrums and blatant disregard for everything I say. As she grows, so does my freedom and sense of self. Dare I say, I feel the 'old me' returning. Sounds selfish, huh?

I mean, if I really wanted another baby, would I care so much about everything else? Would I be making these excuses? Sometimes I feel like I'm giving in to peer pressure. "So when's the next one coming?" Or, "you can't have just one, who is J going to play with?" Or, "Only children are spoiled and selfish." (yes, someone actually said that to me.)

Do I really need to have another baby just so J doesn't grow up to be a spoiled brat? Can't I just raise her to be a well-adjusted, sympathetic, smart little girl?
I like our little threesome the way it is. Is that so wrong? Still, I can't help but melt every time I see a newborn smile or coo. And there are days when J is being so good, I think, "Hell yeah, I can do this." Plus, part of me wants another shot at doing things the right way. Having a child who eats Cheerios and plays in the sand.

Is it fear that's holding me captive, keeping me confused? If so, what do I do about that? Close my eyes and brave the storm? Or, listen and wait?

What made you decide to try for a second?


Nancy said...

This is tough. I always knew I wanted 2 kids and so it was just a matter of when the time felt write after Mimi was born until we tried for the 2nd.

Not that you shouldn't worry about the money issues or the timing with your sister's wedding, but I wouldn't let either of those be show-stoppers to having another one. You wouldn't want to regret your decision later if you decided "no" based on those things. Besides, in terms of timing, you can't always plan exactly when you think the baby will be born, even if you haven't had trouble conceiving before.

But if you really aren't sure you want another one, at least right now... I'd wait on it and listen to your inner thoughts. You may change your mind later -- and it sounds like you are still young enough that you have a few more years.

BTW, I don't think your daughter would suffer at all if you decided not to add to the family. I think if parents are conscientious about it, only children aren't necessarily spoiled. They can grow up as well-adjusted as (and maybe more so than) kids with siblings.

Anyway -- enough advice for you. Ultimately your head and heart know best, but you have your "friends in the computer" to support your decision, whatever it is. :-)

Mrs. Chicky said...

Gutsy post. The Hubby and I are only planning on having the one child and you should hear some of the comments we get on that subject. People are not kind when you tell them you only want one kid. Not that its anybody's business but your's and your husband's because, ultimately, its the two of you (and your first baby) who are going to have to live with the decision.

I don't want to attempt to sway anyone to my side of the "only child" argument. Everybody deserves their own opinion. But I agree with Nancy, you need to follow your heart (and head) and decide what's best for you.

Good luck!!

chelle said...

We want another child. We didn't always want a second, and if it does not work out we are ok with only one. I just want to have another go, try new things and enjoy a baby again (toddlers are cool but come one those little itty bitty babies...sigh..I have baby fever!) It worries me sometimes that if anything were to happen to my husband and I, there would be no one else in our little unit for our daughter. I am an only kid and when my Dad goes that it is for me, no family...that is sad and scary.

It is an individual choice and people get dumb about commenting about having more. Your kid is not going to be spoiled or lonely. You do what is best for your family. I am rambling...sorry!

Kristen said...

Good post. We have been trying for a second - but it hasn't been going well (as you may have read) -and so my views are changing slightly. My reasoning to have another would be for my daughter - I'm perfectly happy with just her -and it wouldn't bother me to not have to do the baby stuff all over - but I would so she could have a sibling.

I don't there is ever a "good" time - you just have to try and see what happens. We'll probably try again in the summer and see what happens for us. I'm not sure I can take 3 miscarriages though.

I had always wanted 3 kids - but you never think about all the hard stuff that comes with it.

Nicole said...

When I first had my daughter, I struggled so much, I thought I could never do it again. But, then I thought about her being without a sibling (as I am an only child). I think I turned out okay, but sometimes I wished I had a sibling to talk to about family stuff and some of the pressure off (as I am a child of divorce). So, we decided to let whatever happen, happen. If it didn't happen, we'd be okay, too. But, it did happen and it happened quickly. It was very overwhelming as we thought it would take longer (it took forever trying for number 1). I'm not sure I was ready, but you adjust. With this rambling, I don't know if I'm being helpful. But, you should do what you feel ready for. A family of three is great and if you feel happy with that decision, then forget what other's say. If you want another one, wait till you feel more ready. As for money, will there ever be enough??

HolyMama! said...

i think we always knew there would be several of them, so that helped. the only issue with us was timing. (that sort of um, took care of... itself)
Keep thinking on it. but your family will be great and J won't be spoiled - if you don't have another! That's such a myth!!

Juliabohemian said...

First of all, you have no proof that your child's eating issues are a result of your parenting. Don't think of it that way. Trust me, you can do everything right and have a screwed up kid or do everything wrong and come out with a genius.

Second, there IS no right time for a baby. Sit down with your spouse and write out the pros and cons. Weigh your options and pray about it. Not wanting to be fat for a wedding is a lousy excuse to deny yourself the joy of another child. There are some very fashionable maternity formals available these days.

Third, while there are sterotypes about the only child, I have known many who grew to be caring and generous people. I have also known many children who HAVE siblings and are still spoiled brats.

You know in your heart what you want.

Stephanie said...

I have one biological daughter and are currently in the process of adopting a little girl. After my daughter was born, I was totally uninterested in having another. But as she started to approach 3 1/5, I started to feel like it was time to seriously consider having another. By the time we get our second child, my daughter will be between the ages of 4 1/2 & 5. If you are happy with the way things are right now, then just enjoy it. Maybe you and your husband will start to feel differently as time goes on.

Anonymous said...

I only had one daughter - she is 23 now. Remarkably unspoiled and happy with her life. I had a great deal of trouble gettng pregnant the first time and even thought I wanted a second one at one point - it just was too much to go through. I have a very close sister - so I do think about my daughter not having that - but she has several girlfriends that are like sisters. Plus - just having a sibling doesn't mean that it will be a close relationship - there are no guarantees.

I purposely did things to help her learn about not being the only child - kept her in acitivites, etc to learn how to collaborativley work with others, etc. She would sometime wistfully remark that she would have liked a younger brother or sister - until I reminded her that she never had someon who raided her room, got into her stuff, spied on her calls, etc :-)

So either way - make a decision and find peace with it. Thats what counts!


Liesl said...

I'm currently debating the same questions as you about another child. Our son is 27 months, and just the last few weeks are the first time since he was born that I've felt like I could handle another, let alone being pregnant while chasing the first. And we have a critically ill family member who'll be in the hopsital for the foreseeable future and perhaps for the rest of his life, which could be years. And so we're dealing with that. But as an older mom, time is not on my side, so that's been an issue.

I'm an only child, and as an adult I wish I had a sibling. But, like others have said, there's no perfect time, and there are no guarantees.

So, while I can't tell you what helped me decide to have a second since there is no second as of yet, I wanted you to know you're not the only one confronting these issues.

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Awesome Mom said...

Go with your heart. My first son was very overwhelming with all of his health and eating issues but through all that I had a very strong desire for another child. Now that we have our second son I could not be happier. It is rough sometimes but we are a happy little family. I have no desire at this moment in time for another despite all the questions about when we will try again for a girl. Maybe some day that will happen but I am not in a rush because right now my family feels complete.

IzzyMom said...

For a long time, Ionly wanted one. But then I kind of remembered what it was like to be an only child when my much, much older sister got married and moved out when I was 7. And when I see my stepsister and stepbrother's relationship, Ii am envious. They are very close. I thought it would be nice for my daughter to have that. Now that we have both kids, I couldn't imagine it any other way but if I had it to do over, I would have had them closer. Mine are almost 5 yrs apart.