There is not perfect or worst age gap between your kids age. Why? There are so many arguments, to consider and to think of, that you will find perfect and worst in every age difference. My experience is about having babies with small age difference. For myself, it is the best age difference.
Was it planned? – YES..almost
When we decided to have children, we already knew that we wanted to have more than one, and I was almost sure that I wish to have two kids with small age difference. Why did I want that? There are many reasons.
=> I wanted my kids have similar age- I was considering it would mean similar interests (this point is WRONG), they will grow up together, play together, and it will be easier, and they will be friends definitely ( this point again is WRONG 😀 ) – last researches shown that it is not like that, and in many cases siblings are not close at all (but parents can do a lot to help them to be – the most important, they must feel that parents love them BOTH, not think that one is loved more than another)
=> I would be happier to have one maternity leave, than return to work and after some time again get pregnant (this point makes sense, and it is really easier, than come back, start to work on carrier, and then again leave all),
=> I am not 20 anymore and to wait too long would be harder with pregnancy and other things, (I would say this is again WRONG, as having pregnancy 1 year after first one is born could be hard as well);
=>It’s better to have all pain at once (we do not sleep now, because of our baby, so let’s have a second baby and we still won’t be sleeping at nights, but it will be all at once) -> OK this makes sense 😀
Why almost? because we planned to start to working on the next baby when Robert was 1 year old, and give us 3-4 month. In fact, it turned out that Timur was already in my belly at the time when we decided to start to work on that.
Do you think that we always thought so? He he.. When Robert was born, we knew that we want one more baby almost immediately (even with problems in the beginning, when Robert was in intensive therapy). Then..When Robert was age 8 and teeth coming our process was started and it was crazy, we didn’t sleep at nights, also during the day it was hard, both me, and my husband told – “seems, Robert will be only child we will have, as it is crazy”. But as you can imagine, that changed pretty fast. When Robert was 11, we decided (both) that we were ready for the second child.
This is life- everything is changing.
Tadaa – Timur was born- life won’t be the same ever.
And it is the truth. Nothing will be the same after second baby arrival (but it is in each age difference). We were preparing Robert to have brother, he knew that on mummy’s stomach is baby and so on, but you never know what will happen when baby will arrive.
Here I share some advice I got from lessons, from other people and how it worked for us
- constantly speak with your oldest one that he will have brother or sister and that it will be great (It won’t be. Don’t say it to your kid, especially if he understands more than our 17 month old one, as life won’t be just easy, nice, and great after youngest brother or sister will arrive). Yes, you need to speak with your kid and tell them that life will be different and we will expect to have one more baby, but mummy and daddy will love you the same, for you nothing much will change and so on.
- when new baby is born, bring to the oldest one “present” from younger one.. This is great, but will not work for all. Robert was so happy for balloon, which his youngest brother “brought to him” that even didn’t see small baby on a bed. not even after 1 hour. Not later in that day. We were lucky (on some point) that he was more “Dad’s son” than mine, and he didn’t feel that mummy needs to spend time with the little one more than with him (the truth is, I tried to spend all time with Robert while Timur slept)
- Not make any changes for your oldest one at least 2 months before youngest born, and 2 months after it (no kindergarten, if he doesn’t go there, no room or bed change, no new rituals ) – this is absolutely true, as the oldest one will have stress already. No need to stress him more
- Don’t give the youngest one things which the oldest one loves (toys, clothes, things which he thinks belongs to him)
- It will be almost as easy to have twins, as you will need all in two, two beds, two pillows, double stroller (most likely).
- This is not only regarding kids with small difference, if one gets sick, the other most probably will get sick as well (you will be dancing if it is like that, or not if one at a time gets sick)
- You can be lucky one and have all smooth and great, pregnancy is perfect, as if from a book, but you can have everything as me and my friend had. Not so easy, for me first 15 weeks were OK (if you don’t consider the sickness I had), but then.. everything became hard and risky. No movements mostly (10 days almost in bed), and no heavy loads and workouts (tell it to 1.5 year old child who wants to be carried, who is not able to get into car seat or sit at the dinner table). Great thing is that all ended well and I have my two greatest boys ever. I am not telling much about pregnancy as it is not point of this article.
Mummy, is it hard to have kids with so small age difference?
Hah..What is easy your days? is it easy to have kids? more than one kid? I can say No, it is not! having kids with small age difference is not easy, but it is not impossible.
And my kids have 22 month difference. I have friends with 15 month difference or even with 12 month age difference. What can I say? This could be really hard in some point.
Is it easy? again NO! there is no easy way also with kids with 3, 4 or 7 year difference.Problems and difficulties vary only.
Of course it seems if you are going crazy, that it is so hard, that you won’t make that, but believe me it will become easier. It will be, trust me! We were alone, we didn’t have mothers close to us (and..as you can find in THIS POST, I simply didn’t ask and it was my mistake).
You must set up a plan and strictly go by it, plan activities, plan meals (prepare in advance if possible)- it helps. It helps a lot.
You are not alone, I mean you are not the only one with such kids. There are a lot of people with children who have less than 2 years age difference. Yes, some are by accident, but many (and I can assure you MANY) who planned that.
When my cousin found out that I was expecting second one, she said: “Ah, OK you most probably sleep well and all night” I said “No, Robert still wakes up at least one time”. Then she said: “OK, but he eats well and by himself, and you don’t have problems with that” I said: “No, still I need to feed him, and Yes, he is still in pampers” . She was very surprised. My sister wasn’t. As she has kids with the same age difference (so.. Can you imagine? I knew perfectly what I am going to have and what to expect)
What is important if you plan kids with small age difference?
I won’t mention all points as most probably I don’t know them. I mention those, I had, and which I met.
# You need to have good health – you need to check, is everything OK to have second baby so fast.
# Both parents need to be in line with that wish, as without husband help and support it will be hard, also great if you have other helpers (grandparents, babysitter, neighbor and other ones)
# Will it be financially OK for you (you need to consider this point at some point. You will have a lot of things which will be left from the first baby, but still you will need more things to buy, at least think about diapers 😀 they will be double)
# All the time think what you do and how long – you can’t spend all time with little one, just because he needs more and oldest one should understand that – no, he is also small kid and he needs care, he needs mother and father as much as little one, even more, I would say. He or She need to understand that now, you love him (her) the same, or more, but not less.
# Think do you or don’t you need a double stroller (I was thinking that I wouldn’t need it, as Robert was walking already and started to say no to the stroller- until the moment when he saw that his little brother was in stroller)
# you will need huge amount of patience, especially if oldest one is not going to kindergarten.
# most probably after some time you will need to buy everything in two (it is not obligatory, but we have two cars, to bicycles, two boats in bath and so on). Yes, you can survive without that and work on sharing, which we do, but still I feel more comfortable if I can give to one the same what other wants so much – less problems.
Would I go for that again? YES, I would. I love them both, I love how they play together and how they act together. They love each other, and I love them. Is all perfect and easy now? Absolutely not, but we are working on that, we are enjoying the time we spend together, and I am thankful for what I have. It is hard sometimes. Sometimes, it is so hard, that I am crying (and they both are crying as well), but we also laugh all together, we act and play together. Life is so great, and they make it so happy and joyful 🙂
I hope that this information was useful for you – Let me know that in the comment.