One Is Good… Thank You

Now that Zoe is 2.5 years old, people have started hinting that it’s time to have another baby. I just ignore or  just tell them ‘thanks for the suggestion’, but no thanks.

One Is Good,Thank You - Having A Second Child - Is One Child Enough?

This post is not exactly about that… it’s about this discussion we had on a social networking site where a fellow mom asked “Just a general poll… single child vs. two children…” Ohh a topic where everyone had a say and everyone had to voice an opinion. 🙂

Most of the moms were ready for 2 kids… reason being – your present kid needs a companion. And siblings are a blessing from above. A mom also shared a link of an article in NY Times on the ‘The Gift of Siblings’. The article quotes a line, “Your parents leave you too soon and your kids and spouse come along late, but your siblings know you when you are in your most inchoate form.” I’d like to add to that, when you get married and have children, it’s your spouse and children who live with you and stay with you for a long time. Siblings then just become a part of holidays and occasions.

Now getting back to the topic, majority believed that having another kid is a blessing, for the parents and more so, for the child you already have. Some also said, that it is alright if people decide not to have a baby. Why have one child and feel it a burden to take care of him/her and then drop the idea of having a second child.

I would beg to differ… though I would love to have another baby (if my health permits) or I would love to take care of a child who needs parents and their love. There are so many kids who do not have mum or dad. That is right now a distant dream, and I hope it comes true one day.

There were some of us who said (and I truly believe in it) – It’s to each his own; having one child doesn’t mean being selfish. The couples who take the decision of having a baby after giving much thought are more prepared. In today’s expensive and busy times it is more important to think seriously before you commit to have a second baby.

Besides, we live in nuclear families, not joint, like our parents did. Help is difficult to find and most couples sometimes work in cities away from their home towns. One should plan for a second child only when they yearn for him/her just like the way they did for the first child. And not because the second one is needed to give company to the first.

Personally, now when we realise how much effort we need to put in our career and how much time we like to spend with Zoe,  we decided that we need just one biological child. I love being a Mom and I love Being Zoe’s Mom, but for me I think that is good enough as of now. At times, I feel so overwhelmed and hardly get time for myself.

Then there are financial matters too that we need to manage, keeping in mind the growing cost of kid’s education. Also, physically I’m not in a position to go through another pregnancy – though I’d love to. As parents, before deciding to give our older child a companion, we should ponder on the following questions:

  • Are we, physically and emotionally, ready to have another little one in our lives?
  • How are we going to cope with our career and the babies? Do we need an extra help… if yes, start searching for one right away.
  • Why are we going for a second baby? Is it just to give our first one a company?
  • Will our marriage be affected with a second baby?
  • Can we wait any longer? If we want to have another baby … when?

So having one baby, two or multiple, should be your decision… not anyone else’s. Just because your friend’s having another doesn’t mean you should also take a plunge.

A story-teller, a Communication Trainer, a Parenting Blogger, a wife to her best friend and mum to the most adorable 2-year-old – Zoe. Falak Randerian, plays many roles, her favorite Being Zoe’s Mom. She runs story telling & communication workshop for kids My Little Chatterbox. You can read her personal blog Being Zoe’s Mom and her parenting website which she runs along with her elder sister www.momsters.in . 

  • Agree with you that having a single child or more should be a decision to be taken by the parents and not under societal pressure.

  • Neha Kumar

    more importantly. Decision should be taken by mom. it is the lady who is wholly responsible for kids !

    • Well, per me it has to be both the parents under normal circumstances

  • Sweety

    Oh, Falak i am going through the same dilemma and just cannot decide. The thing that nags me that most if us do a second child just for the company of first and not coz we really want it. I have my in laws with me, their support but just cannot go ahead since I am not sure if i really need. A child needs not just your time but lots of emotional investment which can make you overwhelmed. If you are ready then go for it. Guess, to each one on his own, May God give us the strength 🙂

    • Yes the decision should be a well-thought one 🙂

  • Nidhi

    You said it – at the end of the day it is the parents decision because it will be their responsibility once the child comes into the world (biologically or otherwise!). Societal pressure can be irritating, but I’ve also been glad to notice a positive shift in opinions towards single/no children couples – and boy am I glad for it! Indeed, I was very pleasantly surprised when not one – not one! – of our parents ever asked us when or if we were having our second!

    • Thankfully the parents understand, and there sure has been a shift in the +ve direction 🙂

  • Shailaja

    So true Falak. It’s got to be the couple’s decision and not what anyone else says. Someone like me who is crazy for kids. I left my job in order to raise my son. Totally my decision. I would love to have a cricket team but as you rightly said it’s an expensive deal. I am , if considering all pros and cons ready for one more. Just waiting for my son to turn 2 so the gap is reasonable.

    • 🙂 All the best Shailaja.

  • Thankfully, we have not come across such proddings yet but yes many people have said / implied that since your first-born is a boy, you may or may not choose to have another. Well, that is another topic altogether.
    But personally, we have put in so much of ourselves into raising our son that I don’t think in the present context, I would be able to do everything all over again. We have taken care of our baby from day one, ourselves with no help from anybody beyond 2 of us, due to whatever reasons. Even between 2 of us, since my husband works, he is less available throughout the day; but has definitely helped a lot in his capacity at every occasion. Moreover, we need to think about financial implications. Of course, having a sibling is special. I remember, when I was leaving for my husband’s home after marriage, I cried much more holding my big brother, and he is everything to me, but I will probably not consider this aspect the only one in deciding for a second child. Many people are not as much close to their siblings.

    • You said it… Same here we (me and my husband) have handled Zoe alone. We have faltered and got up and started again. I can’t say I’m ready to do that again. Fizz says he doesn’t know he will actually be able to love anyone else as much as her loves Zoe. 🙂

      I was the middle one, so I actually came close to my sisters later on in life. I actually wanted to be the only child when I was young

  • Lauren

    I have a daughter I love more than anything! I am an only child, and my husband has a brother that is six years older whom he isn’t close to. We actually had to do in-vitro to conceive our daughter. We have a frozen embryo we will implant, but if that doesn’t work having another child entails a very emotionally & financially draining process. It is very hard to face the questions of ” So when are you having another baby?” In this time, a lot of people have to turn to reproductive assistance, and I think it’s really hard to face that question sometimes. It is definitely a decision to be made by the parents. There are soooo many factors to consider with both natural & assisted conception!!!

    • Absolutely its we who decide.

  • Lovely

    I remember when someone came up to me, and said “aww now a sibling”. I said “aww classmates, mommy and daddy and technology. Baby number 2 is high school,college funds , and retirement funds. No thanks. We’re good