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Old 04-26-2019, 06:18 AM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
36,621 posts, read 44,877,279 times
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I agree^^. Try to focus on the fact that you are giving your daughter a sibling, who will be there after you and your wife are gone.

It will be fine. We humans dont like change very much, but once the little guy is here, you’ll enjoy it just as much as your first child.
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Old 04-26-2019, 06:46 AM
 
354 posts, read 116,753 times
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Hate to be repetitive, but I hugely underestimated the value of siblings before my second came along. I was worried about how the center of our universe would adjust to having a needy little sister, and was absolutely gobsmacked at how instantly she loved her. 9 years and another sibling later, my three love each other fiercely.

Life was good with 1. Life is awesome with 3. Yeah, it's crazy sometimes, and I hate the daycare bills; but this parenting gig is pretty darn great.
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Old 04-26-2019, 07:00 AM
 
671 posts, read 272,816 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadly View Post
Hi,

We just found out we are having a new baby. We had been trying for about 5-6 months and were finally successful. Ever since I've found out, I've been going through some anxiety and strife over it though, even though it was planned. I am primarily worried about how this will effect our existing family dynamic (i.e. my wife, my daughter, and I).

Looking back now, I realize that we weren't really missing anything in our family. We were very happy and content being just the three of us. Ever since I found out I've been really worried about the usual things: money, work load (how hectic our life will become), health issues associated with pregnancy. But, most of all, I'm worried about my relationship with my daughter. She is incredibly close to my wife and I. She's settled into being an only child fairly well and I've gotten accustomed to it just being the three of us. I've started asking myself weird questions, like, "is it ok to look back on that vacation we took as one of the best moments of my life?" "How can I when one of my kids wasn't even born yet?" "What would child 2 think if they ever found out I feel that way?"

I realize that I just found out about this and it will likely pass, but I can't help feeling like the last three years since my daughter was born, three years that are incredibly important to me, have been trivialized now that we know there is another one on the way. I find it hard logistically, a year from now, to look back at them as importantly as I do now.

I'd be interested to hear other peoples perspectives on this when they were going through it. How did you family transition? How did your child make the transition from being an only child to a sibling? How do you remember the years before your second child was born? Do you feel guilty holding those years in high regard?
You'll be fine. There is no finite space in your soul for caring about your children. Your capacity will blow up bigger and make room. You might feel achey, growing pains of it... but it's growth and in the end, everything will fit.

My only advice is to NOT make extra fuss over your daughter, just to remind her that she matters, but to INCLUDE her. She and the baby are going to be siblings... include her in all of it. Seeing the baby on the ultrasound with the wand, "Look! It's showing the real baby in Mommy's tummy RIGHT NOW. I think it's waving at you! S/he can't wait to come out and see you and meet you IN PERSON and play with you! You can show him/her ALL the cool things in the world!" She is valued on her own but don't point it out, just continue to DO it.
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Old 04-26-2019, 07:19 AM
 
Location: Crook County, Illinois
3,358 posts, read 1,497,709 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gus2 View Post
Life was good with 1. Life is awesome with 3. Yeah, it's crazy sometimes, and I hate the daycare bills; but this parenting gig is pretty darn great.
Yes, exactly. One child is just one lonely person living under the parents' panopticon. Multiple children are like their own mini-family, with its own quirks, customs, and inside jokes, that aren't necessarily shared with the parents. That acts as a bonding factor that nothing else even comes close to.
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Old 04-26-2019, 07:33 AM
 
710 posts, read 181,394 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MillennialUrbanist View Post
Yes, exactly. One child is just one lonely person living under the parents' panopticon. Multiple children are like their own mini-family, with its own quirks, customs, and inside jokes, that aren't necessarily shared with the parents. That acts as a bonding factor that nothing else even comes close to.
I'm sorry you had such a miserable experience as an only child, but many have miserable stories to share about siblings. To each their own.
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Old 04-26-2019, 08:09 AM
 
2 posts, read 598 times
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Thanks for all the kind words and reassurances. I think, beneath my angst surrounding our pregnancy, I have a more practical question though.

What do you do with the memories you have from the period when you only had one child?

I realized since this all happened that I've never heard my mom talk about the first 2 years of my life in finite details (i.e. the period of time between mine and my brother's birth). She always mentions them, pauses, and then segways into, "and then your brother was born." She's being political, or, that period of time has truly become irrelevant to what came after.

I have journals dedicated to her, should I stop keeping them? I have pictures of the three of us as my computer background, do I remove them? I have hard drives of photos of just the three of us. We have books and mementos. Etc. Etc. What do we do with all that? I mean, those last three years, we are immersed in it. We're swimming in it. And not just in an emotional sense, we are surrounded by it physically.

I'm not confident that I can take those three years and push them into an appendix at the back of our book, so to speak.

I don't even feel like I should discuss those years with my first born, if, years from now, we find ourselves in a situation where it is just the three of us again. I can't say, "look at this; this is how it used to be."

Virtually everyone who has multiple children has likely been in this situation: you get comfortable with your circumstance, and then it changes. But what do you do with the in between time afterwards?
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Old 04-26-2019, 08:30 AM
 
671 posts, read 272,816 times
Reputation: 1986
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadly View Post
Thanks for all the kind words and reassurances. I think, beneath my angst surrounding our pregnancy, I have a more practical question though.

What do you do with the memories you have from the period when you only had one child?

I realized since this all happened that I've never heard my mom talk about the first 2 years of my life in finite details (i.e. the period of time between mine and my brother's birth). She always mentions them, pauses, and then segways into, "and then your brother was born." She's being political, or, that period of time has truly become irrelevant to what came after.

I have journals dedicated to her, should I stop keeping them? I have pictures of the three of us as my computer background, do I remove them? I have hard drives of photos of just the three of us. We have books and mementos. Etc. Etc. What do we do with all that? I mean, those last three years, we are immersed in it. We're swimming in it. And not just in an emotional sense, we are surrounded by it physically.

I'm not confident that I can take those three years and push them into an appendix at the back of our book, so to speak.

I don't even feel like I should discuss those years with my first born, if, years from now, we find ourselves in a situation where it is just the three of us again. I can't say, "look at this; this is how it used to be."

Virtually everyone who has multiple children has likely been in this situation: you get comfortable with your circumstance, and then it changes. But what do you do with the in between time afterwards?
You are overthinking this.

Your life is YOURS. This is all important to you. Keep the journals you've written. Keep the journals you're going to write. Write about your concerns with this. Write about how you're unsure.

Children don't need superheroes; they need good examples. Their amazing dad, they'll read later, was feeling a bit broken and asked for help. He worried how he would love another child as much as he loves the first. How he worried about sharing this in and keeping these journals. And it will let them know that whatever concerns they have in their own lives are work-throughable. That they can grow from and through them, just as their father did.

That's really sweet and endearing. They will, some point in the very-distant future, read how their father was pained and how he grew and how he loved them and worried so much about if he would be able to love them the way they deserve.

These three years have been precious. They will remain precious. And you will make new, precious memories and NONE of them are in competition. They have been and will always be sewn together as part of your story.

Go with it and don't be afraid. There are new adventures ahead. <3
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Old 04-26-2019, 08:32 AM
 
6,185 posts, read 3,859,550 times
Reputation: 15883
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadly View Post
Thanks for all the kind words and reassurances. I think, beneath my angst surrounding our pregnancy, I have a more practical question though.

What do you do with the memories you have from the period when you only had one child?

I realized since this all happened that I've never heard my mom talk about the first 2 years of my life in finite details (i.e. the period of time between mine and my brother's birth). She always mentions them, pauses, and then segways into, "and then your brother was born." She's being political, or, that period of time has truly become irrelevant to what came after.

I have journals dedicated to her, should I stop keeping them? I have pictures of the three of us as my computer background, do I remove them? I have hard drives of photos of just the three of us. We have books and mementos. Etc. Etc. What do we do with all that? I mean, those last three years, we are immersed in it. We're swimming in it. And not just in an emotional sense, we are surrounded by it physically.

I'm not confident that I can take those three years and push them into an appendix at the back of our book, so to speak.

I don't even feel like I should discuss those years with my first born, if, years from now, we find ourselves in a situation where it is just the three of us again. I can't say, "look at this; this is how it used to be."

Virtually everyone who has multiple children has likely been in this situation: you get comfortable with your circumstance, and then it changes. But what do you do with the in between time afterwards?
You are overthinking this. My oldest child was over 3 when the second was born. She adored her little sister (and a couple of years later, her little brother, when he came along) and they quickly formed a "pack" (I can't agree more with the poster above who stated that siblings are like their own mini-family). I have pleasant memories of the years when she was the only child; she doesn't remember that at all. So what?

Of course you don't throw out the photos of "the three of you." Of course in the future you can talk about things that happened before the sibling was born. I really highly doubt that it will bother her in any way. If she is only three, she won't remember that time in any great detail. She's not going to remember much or care much of what happened before she was three even if she never had a sibling! Don't be surprised if when your daughter is older, she's not even very interested in "swimming" in memories of her toddlerhood.

As for your own memories, they remain with you, but life goes on. Of course you replace the desktop background with a more recent photo with the new baby, and then you eventually replace that photo with one where both kids are older. You start journaling about both kids, if journaling is your thing. The old mementos end up in a box in the closet. This is life. I'm sorry if this sounds harsh, but obsessing about "what to do with my memories" sounds unhealthy to me. You can't live in the past.
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Old 04-26-2019, 08:38 AM
 
3,768 posts, read 2,449,004 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wasel View Post
It will be a huge gift to your daughter to have a sibling. Trust me.
Not necessarily. Having a sibling is not always a positive thing.

Having said that I think OP and his family will be just fine once the baby comes. Congratulations OP.
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Old 04-26-2019, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Houston, TX
14,164 posts, read 8,167,992 times
Reputation: 28643
Quote:
Originally Posted by MillennialUrbanist View Post
You're doing a very nice thing for your family. You're giving both of your kids a sibling to share a life with; that's better than anything material or experiential (vacations and such). Parents are adults, and exist on an entirely different plane, so to speak. Growing up as an only child is a very lonely, boring, unhappy experience; I know because I'm an only child. By having a second kid, you're ensuring that neither of your kids will ever go through that.

Wishing you and your family members, present and future, well.
You don't know that. Just because you were bored and lonely doesn't mean every other only child is. And having a sibling is no guarantee of happiness or family harmony. In fact, a second kid can cause a lot of strife and a lot more financial hardship. There are a lot of shiny happy sentiments here, but to be realistic, a second child can cause a lot of problems as well; hopefully temporary ones, but having a second baby is certainly not stress free. However, to the OP, I hope you have a wonderful experience with your second baby. I know he/she will be a great addition to your family.
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