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Deciding Whether to Have a Third Child

Lately I have been wrestling with the decision of whether I want a third baby/child/eventual adult. That is, if I could even get pregnant again.

I am under no illusion that this is entirely my decision to make. After two healthy and happy babies I don't know if I even can have a third baby.

I know it's not always that easy. But, assuming I could, I analyze and debate this idea repeatedly.

Will it ever become easier when it comes to deciding whether to have a third child?

Pros and cons of having a third baby

Pros and cons of having a third baby

I am old.. like way past the start of AMA old.

It could be irresponsible to try and get pregnant again. If I even can. Am I pushing my luck after having two healthy babies?

My age also concerns me for the child, what if I don't live that long? I don't want to be an old mom. But it's too late, I already am an old mom.

Then again it could be great for my kids to have another sibling as I get older. I have one brother. I love him, but I always wanted a sister too.

I have a boy and a girl, wouldn't it be fun for one of them to have a same sex sibling? They could help each other out as I age. Aren't my odds better of someone visiting me when I am elderly the more I have? That's probably not a great reason to have another baby though.. or is it?

I am finally getting out of the new baby stage.

My children are 3 and 20 months. I am starting to get my pre-mom life back.

I can sleep most of the night and it is pure bliss. I can go out and do things and not worry about my baby being without me for more than 2 hours.

I actually went to the Kennedy Center to see a play last month. The theater! And a wine fest. I can kiss those activities goodbye for another two years if I have another baby.

But, I miss having a newborn.. I miss holding a baby. I am not ready to never breastfeed again.

How wonderful would it be feeling baby kicks from within one more time? And I only have one life. It is now or never. The theater and wine fest will still be there.

Pregnancy is rough.

Pregnancy is horrible. Okay, maybe it's not horrible but it's tough. Nausea, sleepiness or sleeplessness, aches and pains, and no wine, no lunchmeat, and definitely no extreme amounts of caffeine.

I cannot go through it again. As I said, my body is getting older. I may not recover fully if I do it again.

I still need to lose the baby weight from 1 and 2. I like being able to get on the ground with my kids, and run around with them.

But then I think it's not that bad, my hair will grow, and I will be glowing.

It's a great excuse to take care of myself a little better, and lay off the wine and caffeine for awhile. It's not that bad.. it's bad for a few weeks in the beginning and end.

The rest of pregnancy is fine. I can let my stomach out and eat what I want... it's really quite fun.

Deciding whether to have a third baby

I am not sure it is smart financially.

Like I said, we are finally getting out of the new baby stage. After two kids back to back, along with all the new gear, doctor bills, and more; I can see a light at the end of the tunnel.

We might start to have a little cash for things like a vacation or a new house.

A new baby would set us back again. And I can't even think about three college costs.

But then again, I have all the gear, I have everything I need. It will all work out, doesn't it always?

I am not sure I can handle it.

I can handle the kids I have. I've got it down and it feels easy and balanced (most of the time).

It wasn't always this way. I had to learn to balance two. Now that I have things in control (HA) do I really want to disrupt it? At some point is it too much to handle? What if a third screws it all up?

Then I think of course I will be able to handle it. I am not the first mother to have more than one child. It might be tough but how hard can it be?

I know how to take care of a baby. Three sounds boisterous and exciting. More than two, but not so many that I can't give them all attention.

Conclusion

So this is it, I go back and forth. And these are only some of my internal debates, there are others too and I seem to change my mind weekly.

Do I take a leap of faith, or close the door and be content with my family of four?

I think my family is perfect. But then I think about how happy one more would make us, going through all of the firsts again, and of course an adorable newborn baby.

And I know another baby is not just a baby. It is also a child, and then an adult, and that does not scare me either, I love the idea of a large family later in life.

So the debate rages on, at some point I will have to close the door and move on one way or another. Right now I am leaning 99% towards closing that door.

As much as I love the idea, my life is pretty good right now and I'm starting to feel like I do not want to change it.

Maybe if I put my thoughts out to the universe (internet) it will tell me.

So what do you think? Any advice on how to make this decision easier? When do you feel done having babies?

Update

I decided to go for the third baby. So, yes I had her and yes, it all worked out!

Third baby pros and cons

 

 

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Carla

Monday 14th of January 2019

Hi there I am at the same hurdle in my life where I have a 9 year old boy and 5 year old girl.Both thankfully healthy and happy.I have always wanted 3/4 children-the big family plan that most of us have but I find I am so busy and so exhausted with my 2 as it is!I suffer with anxiety and rushing around after my 2 sometimes gets the better of me and I just burn out!I desperately want one more baby but worry am I strong enough mentally and emotionally and again like others have said taking a risk of possibly not having a healthy pregnancy/baby/recovery!My husband thinks we should quit while we are ahead and doesn’t want the risk of something possible going wrong,but it makes me so sad to think of never going through it again and what if I live to regret it?Such a hard decision..

Jen

Tuesday 15th of January 2019

Hi Carla,

It is a hard decision! I ended up going for it and now have my third child and she is great but I am exhausted and it's lots of money with a family this big. So hard to decide.. hopefully it will become clear to you. Good luck!

Marie

Friday 17th of August 2018

Reading this is seeing my thoughts on the screen. And I love that I’m not the only one. We decided to go for a third, and I tell my husband that yes I could be happy with my two but then I get this feeling and I don’t want to look back one day and wish I had! I see you went for it!! Congrats and thanks for sharing this post!

Angie

Wednesday 6th of July 2016

Hi Jen,

Thanks for this article. It's exactly how I am feeling! You decided to have a 3rd! Congrats. How are things going? I hope you write a follow up blog!

Take care, Angie

Jen

Thursday 7th of July 2016

Hi Angie,

I did decide to have a third and it's going pretty well! I have written a few posts about it. I guess time will tell on whether this was a good idea haha..Good luck with whatever you decide.

Jill

Wednesday 29th of June 2016

I'm having the same debate. I'm 40 with a 10 year old and an 8 year old and thinking of a third. I have the same concerns as you... Plus if we were going to go for a third it would still be a couple of years because I NEED to finish my Masters Degree. I don't know what to do...

Jen

Friday 1st of July 2016

Hi Jill,

Well I ended up going for it and now have baby number three. Good luck whatever you decide!

sabrina

Sunday 15th of May 2016

I feel like I've read my own thoughts after reading your post. Thank you for sharing. Best of luck in your decision making! I can't help but repeat Leslie's words above"you'll never regret the children you have only the ones you didn't" ... but why risk disrupting the perfectly happy family of 4?! "Sigh" decision decisions...

Jen

Monday 16th of May 2016

Hi Sabrina, Just so you know I am almost 40 weeks pregnant with my third now. So, I did go for it.. haha. I will let you know later if it was worth it, just kidding!