Does a third child bring less happiness?

3 kids, less joy?

I read this article today, about how a third child brings no extra joy. Apparently research has shown that happiness levels increase for both men and women before and after the birth of a first and second child but by the third child this effect is ‘negligible’

Needless to say, it made me mad.

How can anyone say that a third child brings any less joy than a first or second baby? I understand that for many a first baby is a very special time – you are on the verge of becoming a parent, you are filled with love and joy that you are about to become a family, and bring a new life into this world, to nurture, to comfort and to shape into a new person. But isn’t that the same no matter what number baby you are welcoming? It certainly is for me.

It wouldn’t matter if I was having my second child or my sixth child – the fact that I have been lucky enough to have that child in the first place is enough for me. 

I wonder how this research was carried out? How do you measure happiness? I am pretty sure that we all have days when we are happier than others, no matter how many children we have. But I can honestly say that I have never been happier than I am right now with my 3 children sat around me. I won’t pretend some days aren’t hard – of course they are. But those days would still be hard if there was only 1 child here. Looking at my 3, and seeing the amazing relationship they have makes me feel like the luckiest person in the world – and if that’s not a measure of happiness then I don’t know what is.

Having three children is an honour and a privilege. I am truly blessed.



  1. October 29, 2014 / 8:48 pm

    I too would like to know how they measured happiness and who they measured it on because those who concluded or those that gave that answer are ones with issues

  2. October 29, 2014 / 9:40 pm

    Yes, this is exactly how I feel too. I have no idea how they conducted this survey but they must have interviewed the wrong people, as everyone I know with three would say a similar thing. Having your first baby is an unbelievably happy time (well, it was for me anyway) but so was having my third. They way my elder two interact with their baby brother is the most heartwarming thing ever. Sod this stupid survey, we mummies (and daddies) of three know the real truth. xx
    Cardiff Mummy Says recently posted…Is it okay to sleep naked when you have children?My Profile

  3. October 29, 2014 / 9:43 pm

    What a lot of rubbish how can anyone quantify happiness on the no of children you have. All kids are precious , it does no matter if they are number 1 or three.Each is unique in his/her own rights.
    Nayna Kanabar (@SIMPLYF00D) recently posted…Bread and Butter PuddingMy Profile

  4. October 29, 2014 / 10:04 pm

    Oh those articles drive me insane, what a load of rubbish! You have less time and might have a bit more stress the more children you have but I agree with you, it is a blessing to have three children.
    Nikki Thomas recently posted…Looking for LEGO bargainsMy Profile

  5. October 29, 2014 / 10:51 pm

    Every child is a gift whether it is 3rd or 23rd. Obviously depending on how bad this next labour is, I will never say never. Some people have nothing better to do xx
    Farmer’s wife and mummy recently posted…Ratatouille a recipeMy Profile

  6. Mummy G
    October 29, 2014 / 11:47 pm

    Well said. What a hurtful article to any “third child” reading it! Children are a blessing whichever order they came in

  7. October 30, 2014 / 7:57 am

    I completely agree. Having recently become a mum of three I can honestly say that I have never been happier (or more exhausted!!) If anything my third child brought me more joy as I am a more relaxed parent now, I have got to grips with what I should be doing and am no longer completely daunted with the huge task of looking after a baby. Silly people and their silly studies – I often wonder who they ask when they conduct this research?!
    Lina recently posted…Half Term Theatre – “Match” at The Sherman Cymru CardiffMy Profile

  8. October 30, 2014 / 10:27 am

    I totally agree with you, I have 4 and each one has made me feel happy and lucky to have them. I think the research is ridiculous and they are obviously confusing happiness with energy levels because I just got more tired with each one and doesn’t mean I am any less happy about having them, its just harder work.

  9. October 30, 2014 / 10:34 am

    What a load of old rubbish! So typical of the Mail to put a downer on anything they write about!!

    Our third baby has been an absolute joy. Sleep thief yes, milk monster yes but a delight. We love him just as much as his sisters and he brings us just as much happiness xxx
    Mummy Tries recently posted…Storytime Sounds App #NOTHSHALLOWEENMy Profile

  10. October 30, 2014 / 2:20 pm

    Sounds like a load of rubbish to me. Sometimes wonder if people write these things just to provoke a response. I have 2 children and feel very blessed – not sure that my family is complete yet and would be delighted to welcome a 3rd (or even 4th) baby in to our family x
    Louise recently posted…Me and Mine (October)My Profile

  11. October 30, 2014 / 2:33 pm

    I have recently had my third child and I have never been happier are family now feels complete and we all love him lots . I can’t see how anyone with three children would agree with that article xx
    Lindsay @ Newcastle family life recently posted…Jacob’s Newborn PhotoshootMy Profile

  12. karen
    October 31, 2014 / 12:16 am

    We have 3 and are happy with all of them, our 3rd has mental health issues but not because she is the 3rd, just because she is who she is. Alot of people comment that because of this we should of stopped at 2 – what a disgusting comment to make about another human !!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Discover more from Family Fever

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading