Author Topic: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?  (Read 6943 times)

meatface

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Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« on: July 19, 2017, 08:17:14 AM »
I've searched the internet for things such as "benefits of 3 kids vs 2 kids", "three kids are better than two", etc only to come up with very little. The resulting searches are usually along the lines of "you mean the benefits of 2 kids vs 3 kids, you crazy bastard?!". Maybe this is a sign.

The benefits of 2 kids vs 3 kids (i.e., downsides of 3 vs 2) are obvious, so I'm not asking you all about that. I'm asking you, is it ever preferable, and in what ways, to have three kids instead of two?

I've come up with this short list of potential answers:
 1.) You simply WANT three / can't imagine NOT having three, for whatever reason, and therefore three is better.
 2.) You are forced to be less of a helicopter parent.
 3.) More fun with three. (but if this is true, then why stop at three??)

My wife is thinking three kids, mainly for reason #1 as far as I can tell. I'm thinking two kids, which we currently have, is plenty. I'm open-minded, but my default is two kids unless I hear a good reason for more. To me, having one kid satisfies the 80/20 (or maybe 80/33) rule which it comes to parenting, and two kids seems like the 99/66 rule. A third, therefore, would be 100/100, i.e., little benefit for way more work.  :)

Anyway, what have you got for me? Anything I've overlooking about the positive aspects of three aside from an additional cute little face that will say 'i love you' someday?

ixtap

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2017, 08:27:53 AM »
#2 does not necessarily follow. Helicopter parenting is an attitude, not time management. I have certainly seen parents hover more over the youngest, especially as the older ones become more independent.

Nonetheless, I believe most family planners chose the number of children based on intuition, not pro and con lists. The problem with such lists is that they tend toward confirmation bias.

Three kids fill the backseat, so you don't have to volunteer for carpooling.
You get one more kid to watch grow up and have around for a few more precious moments.
Two kids can't play monkey in the middle together. Or jump rope.
As a third child married to a third child, third time is a charm :)
In our sample size of two, the third kid just might be the responsible one to watch out for you through the years.

Lepetitange3

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2017, 08:40:45 AM »
I have 4 kids, though only 3 are in the range you're probably thinking of (one of mine is an adopted 17yo, the rest are young).  I was also the oldest of 7. Hubby wanted 2-3, I wanted 5, so we met in the middle, and it's just right for us.

So upsides :

1) they always have someone besides YOU to play with, or similarly, when things aren't going well between child and friend or thing1 and thing2, thing1 can play with thing3 while thing2 takes a break and so on.  They always have someone.  There's just a far greater variety in interaction arrangements basically.  Which is a huge plus.  When you just have 2, it can easily fall into the one kid with mom one kid with dad or kids bickering trap.  The 3rd erases this issue.

2) sibling bonds bs sibling rivalry.  The more of the kids there are, the closer they tend to get to one another vs someone has to be bigger, better, etc

3) it's cheaper (this being MMM and all) at least done right it's cheaper.  Once you have 3, there simply not as much time to chase your own tail trying to get different aged kids to 100 activities.  This means for us, each kid gets 1 activity and then we do free fun things everyone can enjoy.  This is vs when we just had 1 she was in like 5-6 activities. 

I could come up with more but I have 4 kids to chase around and work to do ;) will post again if something pops into my head

PoutineLover

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2017, 08:44:42 AM »
My mom was a middle child and told me to never have 3 kids because then one of them would be the middle child. Apparently she hated it. I have another friend who is a middle child and he is the most well adjusted of his siblings, so who knows? I think it comes down to personal preference. And no matter how many kids you have, don't be a helicopter parent.

Vindicated

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2017, 08:47:50 AM »
I was at a cookout at a friend's house a few weeks back, and his parents were there.  I hadn't seen them in a while, and was having a great chat with his father.  He asked if we were planning to have another child (we have one 2.5y/o son), and I said, "We've been thinking about it, but we're waiting for now.  We're really concerned about the cost."

He responded with this profound wisdom: "A man is rich because of family, not money."

Of course there is a balance there, but I liked his point.  What I took away from it:  There is so much more joy in adding a child than in spending the money the child costs on other things.
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Lepetitange3

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2017, 08:47:55 AM »
Lol re: middle children.  That sadly comes down to parenting.  Don't treat your kid like the middle child and it will be fine !

Cranky

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2017, 08:48:03 AM »
I thought it was fun. That's pretty much the benefit of having kids, no matter how many you have.

meatface

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2017, 08:51:08 AM »
Lol re: middle children.  That sadly comes down to parenting.  Don't treat your kid like the middle child and it will be fine !

I believe that.

meatface

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2017, 08:57:11 AM »
I thought it was fun. That's pretty much the benefit of having kids, no matter how many you have.

Understandable, but where does one draw the line? That's the hard question to answer.

ixtap

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2017, 09:01:51 AM »
I thought it was fun. That's pretty much the benefit of having kids, no matter how many you have.

Understandable, but where does one draw the line? That's the hard question to answer.

My SILs let nature draw the line. But to be honest, I always got the impression they enjoyed pregnancy and babies more than raising children.

Lepetitange3

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2017, 09:05:29 AM »
Oh I have the answer for that...you draw the line at your (or your partners) sanity :):):):)

When you have reached- super fun just shy of super crazy, you've reached your last child!

So like I said, I have 4.  I could have the one more I had always planned...hubby could absolutely not do another.  We are at his sanity threshold.  Happy, loving, fun, but any more would be too much. 

I was the oldest of 7 so I watched Littles all the time and already knew my threshold was 5. 

To be clear when I say sanity- I mean emotional, financial, practical, physical, mental, etc  rolled into a ball. 

So hubby and I could afford another and we have the space the means the time etc etc but one more would be too much for him to enjoy the children and not get stressed out by the fun.  I could have had another and still been happy by this metric, but I know I couldn't have had 2 more and been fine. 

My mother genuinely enjoyed all 7 of us and would have had 100 more.  My dad not so much and therefore they probably should have stopped before that. 

MsSindy

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2017, 09:17:35 AM »
If you're not saying, "Fuck Yeah!!  I want a 3rd child!!"..... then you probably shouldn't.

RetirementDreaming

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2017, 09:43:05 AM »
My husband said the children should never outnumber the parents so we decided on 2 kids.  Plus we were older parents and I don't think my "advance maternal age" could have endured a 3rd.  I am from a family of 7 kids (my parents had 7 kids within 10 years) so crazy, loud, chaos households don't bother me but my husband is much more sensitivity and 2 was the choice for us. 

davisgang90

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2017, 09:48:20 AM »
We had 3, the most important thing we learned is you gotta switch from man to man to the zone defense.
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Lepetitange3

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2017, 09:51:01 AM »
@davisgang omg so much truth lol

little_brown_dog

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #15 on: July 19, 2017, 10:38:19 AM »
There are tangible benefits of having numerous children, but they tend to take a while to materialize (ex: a lifetime). More kids = more siblings. This can be a ginormous benefit to children as it provides them with a built in social support network they can grow with over the lifespan (provided they get along decently well that is). I learned so much from my older siblings as they went through high school, college, and early adult life before me. When you get old and deteriorate, they will have others to lean on for emotional support as they try to navigate such a difficult transition. As you yourself age, you will have more children around to visit with and engage with – children and grandchildren are a critical social support network for older people, especially as their friends and family begin to die away. More kids generally means more opportunities for grandchildren, family holidays and vacations, people to come with you to scary doctor’s appointments, etc. Don’t discount these benefits as they can mean MASSIVE quality of life improvements later in life. Of course, none of this is guaranteed but then again none of the “Benefits of kids” or “benefits of being childfree” are really all that guaranteed either. Generally, if your kids are healthy and neurotypical without any serious issues (personality disorders, addictions, etc), and you do a good job raising them to be loving/compassionate/smart people, they will end up with a healthy family dynamic later in life.

Every day I see the huge dividends that having multiple children have bought my parents, inlaws, and grandparents. Our parents are now in their 60s and their social calendars are packed with family activities and playing with grandchildren. Even though many of their friends have moved away or are busy with their own families, they continue to have high levels of social engagement and inclusion through their own large families. On numerous occasions my mom has insisted that having her grandchildren and knowing they rely on her to be present in their lives is what keeps her young, and also what helps motivate her to stay fit and healthy.

Obviously more kids is generally more expensive and time consuming. But I do think that our current culture often obsesses about the shorter term costs of children rather than seeing children as a resource across the lifespan. Sure, they have some crazy high upfront costs, and sure you could definitely end up in the extremely difficult situation of having a child with serious mental or health needs, but healthy, well adjusted and loving children who are engaged with their families often pay for themselves ten times over decades down the line.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2017, 10:43:05 AM by little_brown_dog »

Pigeon

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2017, 10:53:14 AM »
I don't believe having many children means they will be close to one another.  Maybe they will, maybe they won't.  You just don't know.  Dh and I both came from very large families.  We've never had any serious issues with our siblings.  We all got along OK as kids. Neither was particularly close to their siblings as children though, and none are close as adults.  We live in the same town as several on both sides.  We rarely see any of them.  We might call a couple of times a year. 

In terms of taking care of elderly parents, it would have been orders of magnitude easier to NOT have siblings.  We did the heavy lifting.  Some of the siblings had very definite ideas of how we were doing it all wrong and were happy to tell us about it every step of the way, but were not at all helpful. 

I also think there are important environmental considerations.  Yeah, mustachian, gonna raise them not to drive and buy stuff.  But that's true if you have one or twenty-one, and the more you have the more grandchildren each with an environmental impact.

ABC123

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2017, 11:27:28 AM »
We thought we were done with two, but my surprise is now 8 months old.  One benefit I have found is that when the older two (6 and 8) are fussing and arguing with each other, I can just tell them that I need to change the baby's diaper or give a bottle or whatever, and they are forced to deal with each other on their own. 

We were forced to trade in my Hyundai Elantra because there was no way to fit 3 car seats in the back, and we got a Hyundai Santa Fe Sport instead.  It has more storage space and makes it easier to take road trips, so that is a bonus.  I really really miss my little Elantra, so I try to make it sound like a good thing that we had to upgrade.

Scandium

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2017, 01:08:33 PM »
  • Your other two children won't amount to much, maybe #3 will?
  • As in old times: just in case the others don't make it..
  • You need a 2nd guitar player for your all-family metal band?
  • More people to do your manual labor (Though hiring help would be much cheaper)

That's all I got.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2017, 01:40:46 PM »
I don't believe having many children means they will be close to one another.  Maybe they will, maybe they won't.  You just don't know.  Dh and I both came from very large families.  We've never had any serious issues with our siblings.  We all got along OK as kids. Neither was particularly close to their siblings as children though, and none are close as adults.  We live in the same town as several on both sides.  We rarely see any of them.  We might call a couple of times a year. 

In terms of taking care of elderly parents, it would have been orders of magnitude easier to NOT have siblings.  We did the heavy lifting.  Some of the siblings had very definite ideas of how we were doing it all wrong and were happy to tell us about it every step of the way, but were not at all helpful. 

It’s not that having a bigger family guarantees closeness and support, but rather there is an increased potential for it due to sheer numbers. You can’t foster a relationship of any kind with a nonexistent sister or brother. You at least have the opportunity for a potential long standing and positive relationship with an existing one. Similarly, of course not all sibs are going to be helpful or useful handling aging parents. But again, you can’t share a burden with someone who doesn’t exist. At least with multiple other sibs in play, you have a decent shot that at least one of them will be available and helpful to some degree.

jeromedawg

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #20 on: July 19, 2017, 01:43:57 PM »
We had 3, the most important thing we learned is you gotta switch from man to man to the zone defense.

LOL... can you elaborate w/ examples on what "zone defense" looks like in this context?

Cranky

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #21 on: July 19, 2017, 03:04:19 PM »
I thought it was fun. That's pretty much the benefit of having kids, no matter how many you have.

Understandable, but where does one draw the line? That's the hard question to answer.

Oh, you'll know the line! If we'd started younger, we'd probably have had 4 kids, but dh was in grad school until we were 30yo, and it really wasn't practical.

v8rx7guy

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #22 on: July 19, 2017, 03:48:09 PM »
My wife wants a 3rd because she wants a girl.  We have have two boys and she's always wanted a girl.  I hate to make having a 3rd child for that reason alone, but I can put myself in the opposite situation and I'd probably be tempted to try one more time for a boy.  Has anyone else made the observation that verrry often families who have 3 children often have the same sex children as the first two?
« Last Edit: July 19, 2017, 04:22:44 PM by v8rx7guy »

Cassie

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #23 on: July 19, 2017, 04:21:34 PM »
Yes my 3 boys are long grown. I really, really wanted a girl but also decided before having the 3rd that I would not be disappointed and would be fine. Then I had our third boy and it was fine. I was never sorry I had him and loved having 3 kids. Sometimes it works out for people and they get the sex they want the third time.  Now I have 3 small little girl doggies that I can dress up:))   

lizzzi

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #24 on: July 19, 2017, 05:31:48 PM »
Definitely a benefit for the Grandma! I only have three grandchildren, and that's all I'm ever going to have, unfortunately.  God bless them all, and God bless DD and s-i-l for giving me three when so many parents stop at two. I'm not involved in the day to day anymore, but for four years I was involved on a daily basis--babysitting, cooking, chauffeuring. (Mustachians would have laughed at my clown car--tooling around town with two car seats, a booster seat, and Grandpa's walker and wheelchair in the back! Wahoo!) I potty-trained the littlest one, and it got to the point where the school would call me instead of the parents, because they knew I was five minutes away and on deck for bringing over forgotten homework,  dry clothing, ibuprofen...whatever. Now it's mostly just me and the dog, except for longer-distance visiting, but I wouldn't have traded a minute.

Hey, young families...why stop at three? Let's go four, five, six...(I know, I know...)

Pigeon

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #25 on: July 19, 2017, 05:54:18 PM »
Dh is the fifth son in a fruitless search for MIL to have a daughter.

MrsWolfeRN

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #26 on: July 19, 2017, 06:07:35 PM »
Dh is the fifth son in a fruitless search for MIL to have a daughter.

I have a colleague who kept trying for a boy, finally got him after six girls. (She is Somali and values having many children).

Overall I don't think there is any benefit to having three rather than two (except maybe more odds of a match if you need a kidney) but there is also very little additional cost, so do what you want. I personally am going to wait and see how the first year goes with number two before I even contemplate whether or not to have a third.

Lepetitange3

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #27 on: July 19, 2017, 06:13:05 PM »
Also OP, if you're so neutral you're asking us, and your wife really wants another, then I'd say have another.

 This is literally how DH and I ended at 4.  He was extremely neutral on having the last kid and I really felt like I wanted to at least try for one last child.  And this is it for us because we have now reached DH's actual threshold where another would make him crazy in the bad way.  I could have one more but given that I saw that DH was no longer neutral and instead actually at capacity, I'm good too.

okits

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #28 on: July 20, 2017, 01:30:59 AM »
Definitely a benefit for the Grandma! I only have three grandchildren, and that's all I'm ever going to have, unfortunately.  God bless them all, and God bless DD and s-i-l for giving me three when so many parents stop at two. I'm not involved in the day to day anymore, but for four years I was involved on a daily basis--babysitting, cooking, chauffeuring. (Mustachians would have laughed at my clown car--tooling around town with two car seats, a booster seat, and Grandpa's walker and wheelchair in the back! Wahoo!) I potty-trained the littlest one, and it got to the point where the school would call me instead of the parents, because they knew I was five minutes away and on deck for bringing over forgotten homework,  dry clothing, ibuprofen...whatever. Now it's mostly just me and the dog, except for longer-distance visiting, but I wouldn't have traded a minute.

Hey, young families...why stop at three? Let's go four, five, six...(I know, I know...)

If we had a loved one able and interested in being involved like you were, a third would definitely be on the table.  :)  With two kids and four ill grandparents I think we are probably at (or past) the sanity threshold Lepetitange3 describes.

Katiekatie

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #29 on: July 20, 2017, 06:29:49 AM »
Iam in the same position. We have 2 young children and although me and DH both agreed on 2 sometimes I wonder about a third child. We have 1 boy and 1 girl so our family feels pretty balanced so that makes me afraid of having a third but I do feel like if we had more children it would be a lot of fun for the kids to have more siblings to play with but then again it would be nice to just raise these 2 to the best to our ability and get beck to normal life and to eventually have time for ourselves again. It's a tough decision... I agree with the pp, if your partner wants 3 and you are neutral then I would say go for it but if either one of you is really against it then I would stop at 2. Good luck on your decision and thanks for starting this post!

meatface

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #30 on: July 20, 2017, 07:53:06 AM »
I am in the same position. We have 2 young children and although me and DH both agreed on 2 sometimes I wonder about a third child. We have 1 boy and 1 girl so our family feels pretty balanced so that makes me afraid of having a third but I do feel like if we had more children it would be a lot of fun for the kids to have more siblings to play with but then again it would be nice to just raise these 2 to the best to our ability and get back to normal life and to eventually have time for ourselves again. It's a tough decision... I agree with the pp, if your partner wants 3 and you are neutral then I would say go for it but if either one of you is really against it then I would stop at 2. Good luck on your decision and thanks for starting this post!

OP here.

I wouldn't exactly say I'm neutral. I'm definitely leaning towards 2, and wifey is leaning towards 3. Neither of us is 100% decided at the moment; it's more like she's 80% sure she wants a third, and I'm 80% sure I don't want a third. To put it another way, I'm OPEN to the idea, but not even close to sold on it.

For now I'm just gathering my (and your) thoughts in an attempt to be amenable to her, because I care about what she wants. That said, we both need to get to 100% on board or it ain't happening.

ABC123

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #31 on: July 20, 2017, 10:56:49 AM »
My wife wants a 3rd because she wants a girl.  We have have two boys and she's always wanted a girl.  I hate to make having a 3rd child for that reason alone, but I can put myself in the opposite situation and I'd probably be tempted to try one more time for a boy.  Has anyone else made the observation that verrry often families who have 3 children often have the same sex children as the first two?

Good luck with that!  We had 2 boys and were done.  When I accidentally got pregnant again, we thought maybe this was our chance for a girl. Nope.  3 boys for us.

ABC123

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #32 on: July 20, 2017, 10:59:37 AM »


I have a colleague who kept trying for a boy, finally got him after six girls. (She is Somali and values having many children).

Overall I don't think there is any benefit to having three rather than two (except maybe more odds of a match if you need a kidney) but there is also very little additional cost, so do what you want. I personally am going to wait and see how the first year goes with number two before I even contemplate whether or not to have a third.
[/quote]

Very little additional cost?  Another 2-3 years worth of diapers, 5 more years of daycare, 9 months of formula for us, another carseat or 2 . . . yeah, there is a definitely a cost to another baby.

TVRodriguez

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #33 on: July 20, 2017, 11:27:03 AM »
Mom of three here. We had a boy and a girl and then another boy. I know a few other families with that birth order or the reverse.

We love having three. They are close in age at 2 yrs between each. We didn't plan it that way and number 3 was a surprise. Honestly I cried for a minute when I found out bc it had been a tough morning.  But I quickly gave way to the joy of it. He was the toughest pregnancy but easiest baby of the three; that made the transition super calm.

I would have had more if we'd started earlier. We're both from families with 4 kids, and we're close with our siblings now. 

Benefits? I don't know how to answer that.  I love having my three. Another parent might not. My kids like having each other around and they're generally easy kids. Other kids might not be that way. There's more noise and more love and more of everything. I'm sure moms from bigger families could say that.

 I reached my limit with three but sometimes wish I'd had more. Less often now that we're really settled. But neither of us has closed off the option completely. And DH, who was unsure of even having one, later said he wished we had six.

I understand the zero population growth argument. It didn't convince me, though. Obviously.

Katiekatie

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #34 on: July 20, 2017, 10:58:48 PM »
There are tangible benefits of having numerous children, but they tend to take a while to materialize (ex: a lifetime). More kids = more siblings. This can be a ginormous benefit to children as it provides them with a built in social support network they can grow with over the lifespan (provided they get along decently well that is). I learned so much from my older siblings as they went through high school, college, and early adult life before me. When you get old and deteriorate, they will have others to lean on for emotional support as they try to navigate such a difficult transition. As you yourself age, you will have more children around to visit with and engage with – children and grandchildren are a critical social support network for older people, especially as their friends and family begin to die away. More kids generally means more opportunities for grandchildren, family holidays and vacations, people to come with you to scary doctor’s appointments, etc. Don’t discount these benefits as they can mean MASSIVE quality of life improvements later in life. Of course, none of this is guaranteed but then again none of the “Benefits of kids” or “benefits of being childfree” are really all that guaranteed either. Generally, if your kids are healthy and neurotypical without any serious issues (personality disorders, addictions, etc), and you do a good job raising them to be loving/compassionate/smart people, they will end up with a healthy family dynamic later in life.

Every day I see the huge dividends that having multiple children have bought my parents, inlaws, and grandparents. Our parents are now in their 60s and their social calendars are packed with family activities and playing with grandchildren. Even though many of their friends have moved away or are busy with their own families, they continue to have high levels of social engagement and inclusion through their own large families. On numerous occasions my mom has insisted that having her grandchildren and knowing they rely on her to be present in their lives is what keeps her young, and also what helps motivate her to stay fit and healthy.

Obviously more kids is generally more expensive and time consuming. But I do think that our current culture often obsesses about the shorter term costs of children rather than seeing children as a resource across the lifespan. Sure, they have some crazy high upfront costs, and sure you could definitely end up in the extremely difficult situation of having a child with serious mental or health needs, but healthy, well adjusted and loving children who are engaged with their families often pay for themselves ten times over decades down the line.

This was so beautifully written! I never thought of children in the entire lifespan. Sometimes young children are hard so we tend to think short term. After reading this Iam leaning on having maybe 1 more child. I always pictured myself having grand children. Thanks for opening my eyes.

JLR

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #35 on: July 21, 2017, 05:19:10 AM »
Very little additional cost?  Another 2-3 years worth of diapers, 5 more years of daycare, 9 months of formula for us, another carseat or 2 . . . yeah, there is a definitely a cost to another baby.

Cloth diapers, SAHM, breastfeeding, carseat handed down from siblings - our 3rd didn't cost us much more.

My husband and I both wanted a huge family when we started out. Like, 7-8 kids. Then #2 was a non-sleeper. We decided two was probably our limit (though DH was more set on stopping at two than I was). Luckily we ended up with a #3 and he is glorious. I tell him he is my special present in life.

I remember a friend coming to visit when we had just two kids (we had a boy and a girl straight up). He said that we really should go for a 3rd because it was what made his family feel complete. He said that with two kids the house felt eerily empty when one would go one school camp, etc, but three kids in total was just right.

I love having three kids. They mingle well. Sometimes one will have some alone time while the others still have someone to play with. We all still fit in a regular car. It has been interesting having two boys and one girl and seeing how different two children of the same gender can be.

I would have more than three, but my husband is sure that he is at his limit (even though they now all sleep well at night!)

Bosco4789

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #36 on: July 21, 2017, 05:56:57 AM »
Always good to have that 3rd child to maintain a steady stream of "getting" things for you!  Tools, food, beer!

lizzzi

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #37 on: July 21, 2017, 09:05:44 AM »
There are tangible benefits of having numerous children, but they tend to take a while to materialize (ex: a lifetime). More kids = more siblings. This can be a ginormous benefit to children as it provides them with a built in social support network they can grow with over the lifespan (provided they get along decently well that is). I learned so much from my older siblings as they went through high school, college, and early adult life before me. When you get old and deteriorate, they will have others to lean on for emotional support as they try to navigate such a difficult transition. As you yourself age, you will have more children around to visit with and engage with – children and grandchildren are a critical social support network for older people, especially as their friends and family begin to die away. More kids generally means more opportunities for grandchildren, family holidays and vacations, people to come with you to scary doctor’s appointments, etc. Don’t discount these benefits as they can mean MASSIVE quality of life improvements later in life. Of course, none of this is guaranteed but then again none of the “Benefits of kids” or “benefits of being childfree” are really all that guaranteed either. Generally, if your kids are healthy and neurotypical without any serious issues (personality disorders, addictions, etc), and you do a good job raising them to be loving/compassionate/smart people, they will end up with a healthy family dynamic later in life.

Every day I see the huge dividends that having multiple children have bought my parents, inlaws, and grandparents. Our parents are now in their 60s and their social calendars are packed with family activities and playing with grandchildren. Even though many of their friends have moved away or are busy with their own families, they continue to have high levels of social engagement and inclusion through their own large families. On numerous occasions my mom has insisted that having her grandchildren and knowing they rely on her to be present in their lives is what keeps her young, and also what helps motivate her to stay fit and healthy.

Obviously more kids is generally more expensive and time consuming. But I do think that our current culture often obsesses about the shorter term costs of children rather than seeing children as a resource across the lifespan. Sure, they have some crazy high upfront costs, and sure you could definitely end up in the extremely difficult situation of having a child with serious mental or health needs, but healthy, well adjusted and loving children who are engaged with their families often pay for themselves ten times over decades down the line.

This was so beautifully written! I never thought of children in the entire lifespan. Sometimes young children are hard so we tend to think short term. After reading this Iam leaning on having maybe 1 more child. I always pictured myself having grand children. Thanks for opening my eyes.

There are no guarantees, and of course adult children can turn out horrible, but I agree wholeheartedly that many young couples take a  short-sighted view when when they decide to have only zero, one, or two children. They aren't going to have much of a family network in later life.

Paul der Krake

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #38 on: July 21, 2017, 09:08:28 AM »
Having a 3rd guarantees there will never be a split decision. They will have to learn how to barter early on to get the majority to side with them.

Scandium

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #39 on: July 21, 2017, 09:57:35 AM »
Very little additional cost?  Another 2-3 years worth of diapers, 5 more years of daycare, 9 months of formula for us, another carseat or 2 . . . yeah, there is a definitely a cost to another baby.

Cloth diapers, SAHM, breastfeeding, carseat handed down from siblings - our 3rd didn't cost us much more.


Uhm, what? Say three extra years of SAH-spouse. Loosing ~$80k/year salary. Oh, only costs a quarter of a million dollars! (Plus reduced salary when going back to work, insurance not covered, no 401k match, only contribute $5k vs $18k/per year etc.). Daycare is expensive, but staying at home much more so. In fact we get a 4x return on the daycare investment. SAH parent is not free.

Plugging Along

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #40 on: July 21, 2017, 10:41:57 AM »
My wife wants a 3rd because she wants a girl.  We have have two boys and she's always wanted a girl.  I hate to make having a 3rd child for that reason alone, but I can put myself in the opposite situation and I'd probably be tempted to try one more time for a boy.  Has anyone else made the observation that verrry often families who have 3 children often have the same sex children as the first two?

I have a similar observation where my friend  has 4 boys.  I have two girls, and very very briefly thought about it would be nice to have a boy.   When my coworker told me that they where in the same situation with two young boys, and thought they would try for a third girl,  They ENDED UP WITH TRIPLET BOYS!!!!!!    So at one point they have 5 boys under 4 and then 5 teenage boys who were all large in stature.

That story pretty much ended any thought of a third.  I am quite happy with my two girls.   I am also a firm believer of not having them outnumber you. 

Plugging Along

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #41 on: July 21, 2017, 10:46:23 AM »
There are tangible benefits of having numerous children, but they tend to take a while to materialize (ex: a lifetime). More kids = more siblings. This can be a ginormous benefit to children as it provides them with a built in social support network they can grow with over the lifespan (provided they get along decently well that is). I learned so much from my older siblings as they went through high school, college, and early adult life before me. When you get old and deteriorate, they will have others to lean on for emotional support as they try to navigate such a difficult transition. As you yourself age, you will have more children around to visit with and engage with – children and grandchildren are a critical social support network for older people, especially as their friends and family begin to die away. More kids generally means more opportunities for grandchildren, family holidays and vacations, people to come with you to scary doctor’s appointments, etc. Don’t discount these benefits as they can mean MASSIVE quality of life improvements later in life. Of course, none of this is guaranteed but then again none of the “Benefits of kids” or “benefits of being childfree” are really all that guaranteed either. Generally, if your kids are healthy and neurotypical without any serious issues (personality disorders, addictions, etc), and you do a good job raising them to be loving/compassionate/smart people, they will end up with a healthy family dynamic later in life.

Every day I see the huge dividends that having multiple children have bought my parents, inlaws, and grandparents. Our parents are now in their 60s and their social calendars are packed with family activities and playing with grandchildren. Even though many of their friends have moved away or are busy with their own families, they continue to have high levels of social engagement and inclusion through their own large families. On numerous occasions my mom has insisted that having her grandchildren and knowing they rely on her to be present in their lives is what keeps her young, and also what helps motivate her to stay fit and healthy.

Obviously more kids is generally more expensive and time consuming. But I do think that our current culture often obsesses about the shorter term costs of children rather than seeing children as a resource across the lifespan. Sure, they have some crazy high upfront costs, and sure you could definitely end up in the extremely difficult situation of having a child with serious mental or health needs, but healthy, well adjusted and loving children who are engaged with their families often pay for themselves ten times over decades down the line.

This was so beautifully written! I never thought of children in the entire lifespan. Sometimes young children are hard so we tend to think short term. After reading this Iam leaning on having maybe 1 more child. I always pictured myself having grand children. Thanks for opening my eyes.

There are no guarantees, and of course adult children can turn out horrible, but I agree wholeheartedly that many young couples take a  short-sighted view when when they decide to have only zero, one, or two children. They aren't going to have much of a family network in later life.

My mom came  from a family of 12 kids, they hardly speak with each other, and we have very little to do with her side of the family.   My father was an only surviving child, he sees his cousins all the time, and they are like brothers.

Thereare no gaurentee s for any family dynamic.  You can get family closeness whether you have zero, one, two, or a dozen kids. 

Plugging Along

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #42 on: July 21, 2017, 10:48:14 AM »
The point is the benefit of having three kids vs two is that you get to raise a third child.   If you love the idea of raising a third child , then do it.   This is just like the question of the best time to have kids, there is no one answer. 

The financial benefit is often very little and most likely negative, the family relationships will really depend on the family dynamic. 

lizzzi

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #43 on: July 21, 2017, 12:08:38 PM »
Right, as several have pointed out, there are no guarantees. There are wonderful, warm one-child families, and there are cold, uncaring ten-child families. I remember Nuala O'Faolin (sp?) talking about the huge Irish families back in the day--she made some acid comment about them just being raised for emigration. She barely knew most of her brothers and sisters, because they all left the country. Anyway, one thing I was thinking as I read the postings about wanting boys or wanting girls...what is really important is having a healthy baby, no matter what the sex.

SomedayStache

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #44 on: July 21, 2017, 12:33:28 PM »
3 kids means you can play a teamed boardgame with only one parent around.

Watching them form alliances is amusing.

They learn to bargain and there's never a dead-locked vote with 3 kids vs. 2.

solon

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #45 on: July 21, 2017, 12:44:43 PM »
When you talk about kids - or any relationships really - you can't talk about benefits in the traditional sense. The real benefit to 3 vs 2 is you have three kids to give love to, and three kids to receive love from - for the rest of your lives. In that sense, three is better than two, four is better than three, etc.

Beyond that, there are extra costs for each extra kid, including the cost of delayed retirement. Only you can decide if the extra love is worth the cost.

We have four kids, and very little money. I can tell you we wouldn't have it any other way.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #46 on: July 21, 2017, 02:01:14 PM »
I have a girl and am pregnant with another. For us the sex of the baby has never been a factor, and became even less important to us (if that’s even possible) after we experienced miscarriages. We decided that we would like 3 children based on our own experiences growing up in larger 3 and 4 child households, not based on a desire to have both sexes. If we end up with 3 girls then we will be just as happy as if we end up with 2 girls and a boy. Lizzzi is absolutely right, when it comes down to it all that matters is that the child is healthy, safe, and loved. What’s between their legs doesn’t matter to me. Of course, we are going to play it by ear. It is possible that after this baby we may decide to stop (especially if there are other factors like medical issues in play), but as of right now we are still strongly leaning toward 3.

fuzzy math

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #47 on: July 21, 2017, 03:33:06 PM »
The third kid is the cheerful kid.

With 2 kids, there is only 1 relationship between them. With 3 kids, there are 3 relationships (or 3 simultaneous loud arguments)

Can earn more before phasing out of tax credits

SimpleSpartan

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #48 on: July 21, 2017, 03:41:41 PM »
We had 3, the most important thing we learned is you gotta switch from man to man to the zone defense.

LOL... can you elaborate w/ examples on what "zone defense" looks like in this context?

Zone defense, I like it lol

Cassie

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Re: Any BENEFITS of having 3 kids vs 2 kids?
« Reply #49 on: July 21, 2017, 05:45:01 PM »
There is no guarantee that you will have grandchildren with the more kids you have either.  None of my 3 adult kids are having kids. That is fine as it is totally their decision. I have 2 friends that have each lost a young adult child and wish they would have had a third as now they only have 1 child. But in the end you have to really want to parent a 3rd child.