How many children?

Today I have a guest post from Mark who blogs at On a Good Day. He is discussing a toughie – deciding how many children to have.

As my host Kate has just had her fourth(!) baby, I wanted to write a bit about that toughest of questions, how many children should we have?

My wife and I have just one daughter, Frida, who turned one last month, so we’re just starting to think about when and if we should have another child. The first year of our daughter’s life was so manic and tiring that we barely even had time to sit and think about whether we wanted another one. On any given day the amount of sleep we had the night before is still probably the biggest single factor in deciding how keen we are on having child number two!

Both of us come from two child families, and I think your number of siblings has a big impact on what you consider to be a ‘normal’ sized family. There is also still a bit of a stigma attached to only children, but all of our friends who are only children seem to have turned out fine, and it is becoming a lot more common to just have one. Whilst it would be nice for Frida to have a little brother or sister, I don’t think that should be the only reason for having another kid.

how many children?

Our biggest concern about having another child is that Frida was quite a difficult birth (I will spare you the details, as no-one, especially if they’re pregnant wants to hear birth horror stories). I think if my wife were pregnant again, we would be stressed out in the lead up to the birth. We know in our heads that there is no reason the second birth should be as difficult as the first, but we would worry in any case. Another year with hardly any sleep is also a worry, but I do feel like we’ve got through the worst of it with Frida, and if we can manage it once I’m sure we can manage it again.

On the positive side, I now know why people get broody. Two of my male friends from school have recently had their first and second babies respectively. When we met up with them for a picnic recently I met their two month old babies for the first time and was reminded about the good things about having a baby that age (high cuteness levels mainly!). It was also funny seeing the three of us there holding our babies. When we used to meet up the only thing we would be holding would be a pint of beer!

The strangest thing about making this decision is that is not permanent. If we decide to only have one, we can change our mind at any time (unless I have the snip of course, which I have no intention of doing!). It doesn’t always work the other way round of course, once we’ve decided to have two, there’s no going back.

The best thing is that, however many kids we decide to have, I know we’ll be happy. Sometimes I look at my daughter and think she is so perfect that I would be happy if we remain a three person family. And sometimes I look at her and thing she is so perfect that I would like another, and another, and another. What will we decide? Only time will tell!

how many children?

Thank you to Mark for this thought provoking post. How many children do you have, and are you planning any more? We are definitely stopping at 4!



  1. June 17, 2015 / 12:00 pm

    This is a tough one! My boy is now 20wks old and we’ve also started to consider having another. Possibly even adoption. My birth experience was not so good so that makes me quite anxious. We will probably have another at some point but when is the right time? I’m 33 this month so time isn’t on our side! A tough decision for sure. Do what’s right for your family – good luck x

  2. June 17, 2015 / 12:59 pm

    Thanks Lisa, my wife and I are about the same age as you, so that is another added bit of pressure to decide, as we don’t want to leave the decision too long. Good luck with whatever you decide.

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