The Positives of a Big Age Gap in Our Family

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age gap

For our family, the concept of the age gap between children has gone out the window, although it probably wasn’t really there in the first place as we never really had a set age in our heads. For us, it’s always just been a matter of whenever it happens, it happens. To us there’s never really a ‘right time’ to have a baby, you just make it work.

But even if we wanted our children to be less than 3 years apart, two miscarriages happened this year (I wrote about them here and here) and made the decision for us.  I won’t lie, there have been times when I’ve sat and watched Elliott quietly playing at home wishing that perhaps we had another little one to keep him entertained.  But, that’s not the way it has worked out and I’ve accepted it and I look at the positives of having a bigger age gap.

Now that we will likely be faced with an age gap of about 4 years + if everything works out right in the future, I try to look at the positives for our family.

The first positive of a big age gap

The first positive is the fact that it’s given me time to ‘find’ myself. I know it sounds really cliché but the time has given me a chance to recover from postnatal depression,  build my confidence and positive outlook on life. Being diagnosed with PND at 19 months postpartum, there was no way I would have coped with another baby when Elliott was less than two or just two.

The second positive

A big age gap has allowed us to get back on our feet financially after a while living on one income. I’ve had an opportunity to build my business to a point that I am contributing to the household income as well as building a business that I can manage when I do have another baby.

The third positive

I’ve been able to spend 3 wonderful years with a complete focus on Elliott (minus the first bit when I felt like utter crap with PND). When his little brother or sister comes along he will already be quite independent and not far away from starting Kindergarten. This will give me time to spend with the baby. Then when the baby is older, Elliott will be in prep and I get to spend similar time one on one just like I did with Elliott.

But with the positives there are often negatives. Mine is the fact that I’m actually really enjoying having just one child. An almost 3 year old who is mostly happy, doesn’t wear nappies anymore, can talk to me and doesn’t require as much constant attention (touch wood, this could come back to bite me), is really nice. I feel like I’ve gotten so far and am in such a good space, I worry about having to go through all the painful stuff again instead of enduring it quite close together and ‘getting it over with’.

I know that sounds a little selfish, but that’s exactly how I feel. I feel like life has a bit of a better balance now. But don’t get me wrong, I have my clucky pants on when I see other babies and wonder when it will be my turn next.

What is the age gap between your children? Did you plan it that way?

 

This post is part of a Nuffnang native advertising series.

Having trouble during nappy change time with a wriggly baby? Try BabyLove Nappy Pants – with no tabs to contend with, the 360-degree stretchy waist allows you to pull them up quickly and easily, so your active toddler can get back to action in no time! Request a sample.

Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)

Eva is the Editor and Owner of The Multitasking Woman - a lifestyle and parenting blog.She always has her fingers in many different pies but wouldn't have it any other way. Eva is a Mum to her 4-year-old son, 2 month old daughter, two chickens, one dog and a fish called Bob and a wife to Mr G. They all live happily in their little cottage on the outskirts of Brisbane.

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7 Comments

  1. December 4, 2014 / 8:30 am

    I have a four year age gap between my two girls and I love it. I just wasn’t ready or felt like I could cope with another baby any earlier, so it was definitely planned. The best thing was that my eldest was old enough to really understand what was going on and was such a great little helper. With my suprise third bundle of joy now on the way, there will be more than a five year age gap between my youngest and the baby, but given my past experience I’m sure it will work out well – this baby certainly won’t be lacking on cuddles that’s for sure!

  2. December 4, 2014 / 12:42 pm

    Oh Eva! I love how open you are on these difficult topics. It’s so helpful. I’m such a planner. I think 3 years is a good gap if you can swing it. Charlie is 17 months and already I’m wishing he had a sibling to play with BUT Dave is studying so it’s really not an ideal time to be thinking of this. I do worry about miscarriage or not getting pregnant when we want to next time around so it was great to read your positives! Thank you, brave soul!

  3. December 5, 2014 / 10:14 am

    My daughters have a 10 year age gap. I have gained two step kids in that time so our family has a 2 year old….then a 10,12 and 13 year old! In a way it’s been wonderful- the big kids are actively involved in caring for their sister (by choice!) and love helping out with her, carrying her around in a sling etc- they’ve really loved being involved. It’s not for everyone but there are definite positives to a gap 🙂

  4. December 5, 2014 / 11:38 am

    Three under three here and I’m very grateful we did it this way, although not a lot of planning was involved, as I ended up needing a hysterectomy after finding a tumour not long after having my third. I don’t think there is a perfect age gap. What works for one might not be an option or work for another. Hoping things go smoothly for you when it comes time.

  5. Kirsty @ My Home Truths
    December 5, 2014 / 12:37 pm

    We have an 18 month age gap between Gilbert and Matilda and a further 4 and a half year gap between Matilda and Delilah. I think there are positives and negatives for each but I’m just grateful we could have our three little bears at all x

  6. December 7, 2014 / 7:57 pm

    I read somewhere that the ‘natural’ perfect age gap is about 4-5 years if that helps. Something about research into lost Amazonian tribes… Our age gap was 2 years 3 mths. We started trying ‘early’ because it had taken us a long time to fall pregnant the first time around. It only took us 2 months the second time! x

  7. Alicia-OneMotherHen
    December 7, 2014 / 9:56 pm

    The gaps in my kids were never planned, they just happened when they were supposed to I guess. I did try for my youngest earlier, but it took five months. I am kinda glad. She was born two days before her sister 2nd birthday 🙂