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Kids/Parenting: It’s fine, everything is fine.

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  • HevachHevach Registered User regular
    "I want cookies!"
    "You didn't ear dinner yet."
    "I'm not hungry!"
    "Then why do you want cookies?
    "Because I am so hungry about cookies!"
    "If you're hungry there's food on your plate."
    "But I'm not hungry!"
    "Then you can wait for cookies, too."
    "But I'm soooooo hungry!!!"
    *Youngest starts eating off his plate*
    "No stop that I want to eat that!"
    "Fine, eat it."
    "No I'm not hungry."

    And so on in likewise fashion.

    kimelonelyahavaCelestialBadgerElvenshaemrpakuurahonkyMugsleyDisruptedCapitalistShadowfiredavidsdurionsHappylilElfmatt has a problemCarpyAridholspool32NobeardPeen
  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Points to 'off' Points to 'on'Registered User regular
    Henry brought this home from school today. I have turned to dust.

    1goIzsY.jpg

    nibXTE7.png
    davidsdurionslonelyahavaShadowfireTarantioDisruptedCapitalistkimeJaysonFourVishNubCapt HowdyurahonkyHonkHappylilElfMulysaSemproniusElvenshaehonoverePeenBlameless Cleric
  • navgoosenavgoose Registered User regular
    It's funny how exhausting infants and toddlers are physically. Stress, sleep deprivation, always-on alert for baby to find that one way to hurt themselves you failed to see coming....


    But my 12 year old has now started to really emotionally drain me. He is 100% unmotivated about anything, has zero competitive spirit, no internal drive to apply himself or show any effort...And we have tried so many different activities. Keep thinking he will grow out of it as a phase.

  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    A shot in the dark on that: is he or could he be interested in how things work? I watched a few videos of the Smarter Every Day YT channel with my younger daughter and she enjoyed them.

    Granted, this was spurred by her asking how the toilet works, but stuff like that where he can learn more about the world around him could help.

    Granted, when I was 12, I didn't want to do a whole lot either. But that was around the age I discovered DnD and M:tG (Magic may have been a few years later).

    urahonky
  • Romantic UndeadRomantic Undead Registered User regular
    navgoose wrote: »
    It's funny how exhausting infants and toddlers are physically. Stress, sleep deprivation, always-on alert for baby to find that one way to hurt themselves you failed to see coming....


    But my 12 year old has now started to really emotionally drain me. He is 100% unmotivated about anything, has zero competitive spirit, no internal drive to apply himself or show any effort...And we have tried so many different activities. Keep thinking he will grow out of it as a phase.

    Is your kid me circa 1990? :p

    3DS FC: 1547-5210-6531
    Brody
  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    navgoose wrote: »
    It's funny how exhausting infants and toddlers are physically. Stress, sleep deprivation, always-on alert for baby to find that one way to hurt themselves you failed to see coming....


    But my 12 year old has now started to really emotionally drain me. He is 100% unmotivated about anything, has zero competitive spirit, no internal drive to apply himself or show any effort...And we have tried so many different activities. Keep thinking he will grow out of it as a phase.

    Thinking back to myself at that age, and my relationship to the activities my parents planned for me, have you asked him what he enjoys doing? What he's excited about? I know my parents got so caught up in finding me stuff to do, they forgot to really ask what I wanted to do! I always wanted to keep them happy so I usually did it, but, they were always concerned that I wasn't motivated enough about it.

    "That is cool" - Abraham Lincoln
    IncenjucarRomantic UndeadEvermourn
  • IncenjucarIncenjucar VChatter Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    navgoose wrote: »
    It's funny how exhausting infants and toddlers are physically. Stress, sleep deprivation, always-on alert for baby to find that one way to hurt themselves you failed to see coming....


    But my 12 year old has now started to really emotionally drain me. He is 100% unmotivated about anything, has zero competitive spirit, no internal drive to apply himself or show any effort...And we have tried so many different activities. Keep thinking he will grow out of it as a phase.

    Thinking back to myself at that age, and my relationship to the activities my parents planned for me, have you asked him what he enjoys doing? What he's excited about? I know my parents got so caught up in finding me stuff to do, they forgot to really ask what I wanted to do! I always wanted to keep them happy so I usually did it, but, they were always concerned that I wasn't motivated enough about it.

    There's also value in seeing if there's something blocking them from doing something they are interested in, which can look like not being interested.

  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    Related: do you have any projects coming up at home he could get interested in?

    Or you can go down another rabbit hole with him and be like, "you know, I heard there was a way you could set up your own ad blocker. Do you want to help me build a Pi Hole?"


    Also also maybe take a read through Adam Savage's book Everything's A Hammer and see if he has any ideas that would work.

  • urahonkyurahonky Dayton, OHRegistered User regular
    I don't know if I'm expecting anyone to answer but I just wanted to type out my concerns.

    My daughter's 6 and is incredibly empathetic and smart. Unfortunately I see a lot of me in her... Meaning if she does something stupid (drop a cup of water, accidentally knock something over, etc) she goes into a spiraling self destructive cycle of hating herself and getting mad over it. I've been working on it with her. Talking to her calmly, explaining that mistakes happen, etc...

    But sometimes when she gets into her "distraught mode" she says stuff like "the kids at school make fun of me and make me do things I don't like but I have to do them" and "I HAVE to be bad because I want to be bad and not be a good listener" and stuff like this. I don't know if I believe that the kids at school are making fun of her. Every time we mention meeting up at school she shows no sign of NOT wanting to go to school. If she isn't in one of her moods she is always happy to go to school and always has good things to say about her classmates.

    My family has a "history" of doing this thing where if we get upset we think the world is out to get us... I've seen it first hand with my mom and my sister and I'm just a little concerned my daughter is also getting this personality trait and I don't know what to do about it.

  • lonelyahavalonelyahava Call me Ahava ~~She/Her~~ Move to New ZealandRegistered User regular
    Have you talked to her teachers at school? See if they've noticed anything as well? Does the school have a counselor? It might be worth a visit if the teachers notice something.

    mrpaku
  • AimAim Registered User regular
    urahonky wrote: »
    I don't know if I'm expecting anyone to answer but I just wanted to type out my concerns.

    My daughter's 6 and is incredibly empathetic and smart. Unfortunately I see a lot of me in her... Meaning if she does something stupid (drop a cup of water, accidentally knock something over, etc) she goes into a spiraling self destructive cycle of hating herself and getting mad over it. I've been working on it with her. Talking to her calmly, explaining that mistakes happen, etc...

    But sometimes when she gets into her "distraught mode" she says stuff like "the kids at school make fun of me and make me do things I don't like but I have to do them" and "I HAVE to be bad because I want to be bad and not be a good listener" and stuff like this. I don't know if I believe that the kids at school are making fun of her. Every time we mention meeting up at school she shows no sign of NOT wanting to go to school. If she isn't in one of her moods she is always happy to go to school and always has good things to say about her classmates.

    My family has a "history" of doing this thing where if we get upset we think the world is out to get us... I've seen it first hand with my mom and my sister and I'm just a little concerned my daughter is also getting this personality trait and I don't know what to do about it.

    I have nothing on the school part other than talking to the teacher to see if they noticed anything, but on the mistakes what I try to do is say that everyone makes mistakes, and while you should try not to do them in the first place, the important part after we do a mistake is to try to fix it as best as we can. Then I try to involve them with the cleanup, gluing, and generally focusing on the solution rather than what what they perceive as the cause.

  • urahonkyurahonky Dayton, OHRegistered User regular
    Have you talked to her teachers at school? See if they've noticed anything as well? Does the school have a counselor? It might be worth a visit if the teachers notice something.

    Yeah every parent/teacher conference says that everyone loves her and she's so sweet. So I really can't tell if she's actually having issues with students or if it's just my family history already showing.
    Aim wrote: »
    I have nothing on the school part other than talking to the teacher to see if they noticed anything, but on the mistakes what I try to do is say that everyone makes mistakes, and while you should try not to do them in the first place, the important part after we do a mistake is to try to fix it as best as we can. Then I try to involve them with the cleanup, gluing, and generally focusing on the solution rather than what what they perceive as the cause.

    This is a good idea. It doesn't help that I still act like a child whenever I make mistakes myself.... And I want to make sure they don't have that personality trait when they get older.

    DisruptedCapitalistAim
  • AimAim Registered User regular
    urahonky wrote: »
    Have you talked to her teachers at school? See if they've noticed anything as well? Does the school have a counselor? It might be worth a visit if the teachers notice something.

    Yeah every parent/teacher conference says that everyone loves her and she's so sweet. So I really can't tell if she's actually having issues with students or if it's just my family history already showing.
    Aim wrote: »
    I have nothing on the school part other than talking to the teacher to see if they noticed anything, but on the mistakes what I try to do is say that everyone makes mistakes, and while you should try not to do them in the first place, the important part after we do a mistake is to try to fix it as best as we can. Then I try to involve them with the cleanup, gluing, and generally focusing on the solution rather than what what they perceive as the cause.

    This is a good idea. It doesn't help that I still act like a child whenever I make mistakes myself.... And I want to make sure they don't have that personality trait when they get older.

    I feel you, cause that's where me and my wife are coming from as well.

  • navgoosenavgoose Registered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    navgoose wrote: »
    It's funny how exhausting infants and toddlers are physically. Stress, sleep deprivation, always-on alert for baby to find that one way to hurt themselves you failed to see coming....


    But my 12 year old has now started to really emotionally drain me. He is 100% unmotivated about anything, has zero competitive spirit, no internal drive to apply himself or show any effort...And we have tried so many different activities. Keep thinking he will grow out of it as a phase.

    Thinking back to myself at that age, and my relationship to the activities my parents planned for me, have you asked him what he enjoys doing? What he's excited about? I know my parents got so caught up in finding me stuff to do, they forgot to really ask what I wanted to do! I always wanted to keep them happy so I usually did it, but, they were always concerned that I wasn't motivated enough about it.

    There's two parts for my response:

    First: he has hand picked various camps and sports and every single one he basically drops interest in the moment camp/season is over. Archery, minecraft mod programming, baseball, basketball, swimming, etc.

    Second: one of the primary lessons he needs to learn is how to put effort into things regardless if it is something you like or not.

    I get that phases come and go but the whole apathetic to everything combined with a general unwillingness to put in any effort has not ended yet and is getting tiresome.

  • JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    navgoose wrote: »
    tbloxham wrote: »
    navgoose wrote: »
    It's funny how exhausting infants and toddlers are physically. Stress, sleep deprivation, always-on alert for baby to find that one way to hurt themselves you failed to see coming....


    But my 12 year old has now started to really emotionally drain me. He is 100% unmotivated about anything, has zero competitive spirit, no internal drive to apply himself or show any effort...And we have tried so many different activities. Keep thinking he will grow out of it as a phase.

    Thinking back to myself at that age, and my relationship to the activities my parents planned for me, have you asked him what he enjoys doing? What he's excited about? I know my parents got so caught up in finding me stuff to do, they forgot to really ask what I wanted to do! I always wanted to keep them happy so I usually did it, but, they were always concerned that I wasn't motivated enough about it.

    There's two parts for my response:

    First: he has hand picked various camps and sports and every single one he basically drops interest in the moment camp/season is over. Archery, minecraft mod programming, baseball, basketball, swimming, etc.

    Second: one of the primary lessons he needs to learn is how to put effort into things regardless if it is something you like or not.

    I get that phases come and go but the whole apathetic to everything combined with a general unwillingness to put in any effort has not ended yet and is getting tiresome.

    I recall giving up on a lot of things because they were difficult when I was that age.

    The things I didn't I had a ton of parental pressure to keep doing. Probably partially from cost considerations, which I empathize with. But I didn't enjoy these like I should have. I stuck in band, not because I liked it, but to avoid getting yelled at. I didn't really have the support I needed to improve either, so it was just a slog. My parents also had the idea that they would buy the instrument instead of renting, which made more financial sense if you knew a kid would stick with it, but much less of they didn't.

    My thoughts:

    I think the important thing is to realize kids are going to quit. People in general are going to try new things and not like them.

    Try and support their development in something if you can, or find someone who can. To learn something you need deliberate practice. A lot of kids programs are over stuffed with kids, so they aren't getting a lot of personal interaction. If you have time and knowledge to help practice, do what you can. They might not be getting that from a coach or teacher, and could be giving up as soon as it gets challenging because they don't know how to proceed in improving.

    Speak frankly with them about financial considerations. It's okay to be honest with them about it being expensive to do these things. Just try to not be angry about it. You get the value of money, and they dont really yet because they are 12.

    Remind them that deliberate practice is the way to improve, and natural talent is not really a thing, only a slight aptitude. To git gud you gotta try and try again, as they say.

    I write you a story
    But it loses its thread
  • navgoosenavgoose Registered User regular
    I appreciate the ideas but I was more just venting about struggles of parenting. We've gone through most things people are advising anyway (also there aren't any financial concerns to guilt anyone over).

    Our most current strategy is holding him accountable for putting effort into his latest program (that he chose). We are actually fine with him not finding something he is passionate about in each activity. But he absolutely needs to learn how to apply himself when asked and to show effort for his and everyone else sake when there is a team or group activity.

  • JansonJanson Registered User regular
    urahonky wrote: »
    I don't know if I'm expecting anyone to answer but I just wanted to type out my concerns.

    My daughter's 6 and is incredibly empathetic and smart. Unfortunately I see a lot of me in her... Meaning if she does something stupid (drop a cup of water, accidentally knock something over, etc) she goes into a spiraling self destructive cycle of hating herself and getting mad over it. I've been working on it with her. Talking to her calmly, explaining that mistakes happen, etc...

    So, my 7 year old is doing very similar things. As well as this she can also be sent into spirals where she’ll cry for up to two hours.

    And my husband and I have also been worried because we’re both anxious people and we also worry that this is something she’s inherited from us/picked up from us.

    However, I’ve been speaking to a lot of friends and it seems to be somewhat common for this age group, which was comforting to hear.

    I don’t have any real advice for how to handle it but we actually brought it up to my daughter’s doctor because we’re also looking for coping techniques. We have a referral for a counselor so I can let you know how that goes!

    DisruptedCapitalist
  • Jebus314Jebus314 Registered User regular
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    "The world is a mess, and I just need to rule it" - Dr Horrible
  • RedTideRedTide Registered User regular
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    The main hazard would be the baby shifting or rolling to partially or fully obstruct their airway on the pillow (even a partial obstruction could lower O2 levels in a dangerous manner).

    Also not to be a shit but three months is when they typically first roll over and they don't always warn you when they're about to hit a milestone.

    RedTide#1907 on Battle.net
    Come Overwatch with meeeee
    ElvenshaeCelestialBadgerCauldadejaanShadowfire
  • Jebus314Jebus314 Registered User regular
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    The main hazard would be the baby shifting or rolling to partially or fully obstruct their airway on the pillow (even a partial obstruction could lower O2 levels in a dangerous manner).

    Also not to be a shit but three months is when they typically first roll over and they don't always warn you when they're about to hit a milestone.

    I am aware of SIDS. But the likelihood is still something like 1 in a 10,000 chance.

    "The world is a mess, and I just need to rule it" - Dr Horrible
  • RedTideRedTide Registered User regular
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    The main hazard would be the baby shifting or rolling to partially or fully obstruct their airway on the pillow (even a partial obstruction could lower O2 levels in a dangerous manner).

    Also not to be a shit but three months is when they typically first roll over and they don't always warn you when they're about to hit a milestone.

    I am aware of SIDS. But the likelihood is still something like 1 in a 10,000 chance.

    There's no silver bullet for safety but keeping a pillow or soft sleeping surface from an infant isn't like a controversial precaution either.

    At the end of the day it's your guys call, but personally if I had a 1 in 10000 shot of winning the lottery, I'd play every day.

    RedTide#1907 on Battle.net
    Come Overwatch with meeeee
    CelestialBadgerdiscrider
  • Jebus314Jebus314 Registered User regular
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    The main hazard would be the baby shifting or rolling to partially or fully obstruct their airway on the pillow (even a partial obstruction could lower O2 levels in a dangerous manner).

    Also not to be a shit but three months is when they typically first roll over and they don't always warn you when they're about to hit a milestone.

    I am aware of SIDS. But the likelihood is still something like 1 in a 10,000 chance.

    There's no silver bullet for safety but keeping a pillow or soft sleeping surface from an infant isn't like a controversial precaution either.

    At the end of the day it's your guys call, but personally if I had a 1 in 10000 shot of winning the lottery, I'd play every day.

    And yet I’m betting you still get in a car.

    "The world is a mess, and I just need to rule it" - Dr Horrible
  • RedTideRedTide Registered User regular
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    The main hazard would be the baby shifting or rolling to partially or fully obstruct their airway on the pillow (even a partial obstruction could lower O2 levels in a dangerous manner).

    Also not to be a shit but three months is when they typically first roll over and they don't always warn you when they're about to hit a milestone.

    I am aware of SIDS. But the likelihood is still something like 1 in a 10,000 chance.

    There's no silver bullet for safety but keeping a pillow or soft sleeping surface from an infant isn't like a controversial precaution either.

    At the end of the day it's your guys call, but personally if I had a 1 in 10000 shot of winning the lottery, I'd play every day.

    And yet I’m betting you still get in a car.

    A car with air bags and a seat belt that I elect to use

    RedTide#1907 on Battle.net
    Come Overwatch with meeeee
    ElvenshaeCauldShadowfire
  • Jebus314Jebus314 Registered User regular
    edited September 2019
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    RedTide wrote: »
    Jebus314 wrote: »
    With the in-laws, and I put our 3 month old down for a nap on a bed. She’s in a “lounger,” which is basically a pillow with a sink hole in the middle. I had like 4 people tell me it was very unsafe.

    She can’t move herself. And even if she managed to roll, up hill, for the first time in her life, she would have to roll like 4 more times to get to the edge of the bed.

    But boy do I love the unsolicited advice.

    The main hazard would be the baby shifting or rolling to partially or fully obstruct their airway on the pillow (even a partial obstruction could lower O2 levels in a dangerous manner).

    Also not to be a shit but three months is when they typically first roll over and they don't always warn you when they're about to hit a milestone.

    I am aware of SIDS. But the likelihood is still something like 1 in a 10,000 chance.

    There's no silver bullet for safety but keeping a pillow or soft sleeping surface from an infant isn't like a controversial precaution either.

    At the end of the day it's your guys call, but personally if I had a 1 in 10000 shot of winning the lottery, I'd play every day.

    And yet I’m betting you still get in a car.

    A car with air bags and a seat belt that I elect to use

    And I put my kid on their back instead of on their stomach.

    We all make choices on acceptable risk levels. You would unequivocally be safer not driving anywhere, but you do because you find it to be an acceptable risk. I understand the risks of suffocation, but I did not think they were high enough to change my plan.

    But everyone has an opinion on parenting choices I guess.

    Edit- and in case anyone is wondering, she survived her dangerous nap, much to everyone’s surprise apparently.

    Jebus314 on
    "The world is a mess, and I just need to rule it" - Dr Horrible
  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    My little girl is 18 months old. This is the year for us to decide if we will have a second. So far we are leaning "no" (maybe 60% lean) mostly because we have a great, easy-going kid and our life is busy but really good and fun. I'm worry about upsetting that balance, taking the risk of a second kid, and then maybe it isn't so fun anymore. I can't help but think of when we went from one dog to two. The workload basically doubled but the enjoyment only went up a bit. After all how much more fun is it to play with two dogs as opposed to one? Also, our first dog is super easy while the second one requires a much firmer hand to stay in line.

    Of course I've asked for advice from my friends, but all of them have two kids (and one has four). Human brains and rationalization being what they are, they are all team two kids. So how about you all? Are there any posters of team one and done? I would love to hear your thoughts. And of course anyone else's that wants to chime in.

  • EntriechEntriech Registered User regular
    enc0re wrote: »
    My little girl is 18 months old. This is the year for us to decide if we will have a second. So far we are leaning "no" (maybe 60% lean) mostly because we have a great, easy-going kid and our life is busy but really good and fun. I'm worry about upsetting that balance, taking the risk of a second kid, and then maybe it isn't so fun anymore. I can't help but think of when we went from one dog to two. The workload basically doubled but the enjoyment only went up a bit. After all how much more fun is it to play with two dogs as opposed to one? Also, our first dog is super easy while the second one requires a much firmer hand to stay in line.

    Of course I've asked for advice from my friends, but all of them have two kids (and one has four). Human brains and rationalization being what they are, they are all team two kids. So how about you all? Are there any posters of team one and done? I would love to hear your thoughts. And of course anyone else's that wants to chime in.

    Hey, my wife and I are one and done. We've got a little girl who just turned 5 today. Had the discussions around it when she was maybe a year old. When we decided not to have another kid, our reasoning in order of contributing to decision was:

    1) Workload. Right now, when my kid goes to bed, my wife and I get free time. With two parents and one kid, there's always the option to tag out, and juggling responsibilities is a lot simpler. Less activities, less places to be. This is also not to mention the multiplicative effect of multiple kids interacting to create fresh new problems. Not to mention only having to go through things like sleep training, diapers, and potty training once.
    2) Financial resources. With only one kid, we'll be able to put her in more activities, or more pricey ones. We'll be able to eat out more, or at nicer places. Take more frequent family trips, or to more pricey places.
    3) No guarantee of filial bond. I was an only child, so I had no concerns. My wife has 3 half siblings, only one of which she is at all close to. We rationalized that simply having multiple kids was no guarantee they'd enjoy the kind of closeness we'd read about, and that our family was a lot more oriented around finding people to have that connection with rather than producing it within our immediate family unit.

    I think I had a few regrets about it a couple times when she was younger, but also those pretty much were gone by age 3 or so, and I don't think we'd have done it any differently regardless. We also had our daughter when we were older (34/35) so there's also some consideration at that point about risks of pregnancy and what age you'll be before you're all done raising your kids.

    enc0reJanson
  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    enc0re wrote: »
    My little girl is 18 months old. This is the year for us to decide if we will have a second. So far we are leaning "no" (maybe 60% lean) mostly because we have a great, easy-going kid and our life is busy but really good and fun. I'm worry about upsetting that balance, taking the risk of a second kid, and then maybe it isn't so fun anymore. I can't help but think of when we went from one dog to two. The workload basically doubled but the enjoyment only went up a bit. After all how much more fun is it to play with two dogs as opposed to one? Also, our first dog is super easy while the second one requires a much firmer hand to stay in line.

    Of course I've asked for advice from my friends, but all of them have two kids (and one has four). Human brains and rationalization being what they are, they are all team two kids. So how about you all? Are there any posters of team one and done? I would love to hear your thoughts. And of course anyone else's that wants to chime in.

    Two kids is not actually twice the work of one, but, that's because you can trim all the fact off the first kids parenting strategy and get twice the amount done without twice the work.

    Effectively the decision you have to make is,do you want to be a ringmaster, or a clown. If you have two then if they are close in age for the first like 10 years of their lives they will play together, and your job will be to keep that play safe and happy. If you have one, then you will have to get involved and help create the games.

    Two kids are also an emotional support network for each other in ways that will be hard for you to achieve. There is an inherent trust between children when they are young (assuming you create a positive and nurturing environment) that can help, and your child can have a home life that doesn't revolve entirely around you.

    But, two kids are double the chance of needing a sick day. Double the time spent helping with homework. Double the burden on the solo parent if you decide to have one of you go and do an activity.

    I mean, I hate to be stereotypical, but if you have an easy going girl and you get a middle of the road boy, he's going to burst through your happily ordered life like an atom bomb.

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  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    I've actually always heard that two kids is more than double the work, but can't say from personal experience.

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  • MegafrostMegafrost Leader of the Decepticons Registered User regular
    The way things have shaken up in my household, two kids is definitely challenging in a way that even one isn't for a lot of reasons.

    When the younger one was a baby, we needed to split attention and the older one wasn't quite old enough to really understand how much help the younger one needed or why he was no longer the sole source of attention. That was a challenging adjustment period.

    Nowadays it's still really challenging, but because the two are completely different temperaments and like different things. My older one is quiet and cautious, the younger one is loud and adventurous. They like very different things and it's hard to find one activity for them both to do. Especially difficult to have one parent take both kids out to an activity, the older one has wanted attention while out but the younger one ends up getting it since he gets in trouble.

    Other thing that has changed is that, while both kids love both parents and both parents love both kids, it's pretty clear that the older one listens more to me and the younger one listens more to mom.

    Long story short, the status quo WILL be disrupted.

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  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    kime wrote: »
    I've actually always heard that two kids is more than double the work, but can't say from personal experience.

    I think you typically hear that phrase from dads who have very supportive wives(or whatever your primary caregiver relationship is). One child with a very dedicated parent can mean the other can be on easy street parenting wise, lots of time for themselves and for their own activities. Two kids blows that up, and suddenly both parents have to be involved. But, if both parents were already involved, it's not such a transition.

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  • JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    There are fixed amounts of work for certain things. Making food for 2 kids isn't appreciably different from making food for 1 kid. Basically the same amount of work.

    Reading bedtime books will basically be the same if they go to bed at the same time.

    It's twice the work sounds wrong. Maybe twice the emotional labor. But probably not twice the physical work.

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  • Capt HowdyCapt Howdy Registered User regular
    Space them out a good eight years like we (unintentionally) did. Having a 13 year old to help with the five year old is great. "Son, help your little brother build that Lego set. But Dad, isn't that your job? It was when you were that age, now you get to experience the "joy" of building with someone who thinks they know better than those damned instructions". (Yes, I'm half jesting about this)

    I don't get the double work line of thought. Half the difficulties of the first child is not having any experience with what to expect and what to do. Our second son is much easier compared to our first at this age. And that’s despite us being older. Though, again, the first son being older probably plays into that.

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  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    There are times every week where I question why we had a second child. Ours are 8 and 10. I'm trying to blame most of that on age, but I also know that the truly tough years are just around the corner.

    I'm not sure what other info you want. The biggest change for us was that one parent didn't get to have "time off" or a "breather" anymore. Instead we just swapped duties regularly. So for example, you couldn't have one parent go off and finish dishes while the other put the kid to bed. Now each kid requires a parent to help with bedtime.

    If you're comfortable with your decision and it's just social pressure, you'll find coping mechanisms to handle that. If you both are still having serious discussions and you want input, we can all try to give you anecdotes. It's all so subjective, though, that we can only go so far. If one of you wants more but the other doesn't, I recommend blocking time out to sit down and talk through it, or use some sort of counseling to help arbitrate (for lack of a better term).

    enc0re
  • BrodyBrody The Watch The First ShoreRegistered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    enc0re wrote: »
    My little girl is 18 months old. This is the year for us to decide if we will have a second. So far we are leaning "no" (maybe 60% lean) mostly because we have a great, easy-going kid and our life is busy but really good and fun. I'm worry about upsetting that balance, taking the risk of a second kid, and then maybe it isn't so fun anymore. I can't help but think of when we went from one dog to two. The workload basically doubled but the enjoyment only went up a bit. After all how much more fun is it to play with two dogs as opposed to one? Also, our first dog is super easy while the second one requires a much firmer hand to stay in line.

    Of course I've asked for advice from my friends, but all of them have two kids (and one has four). Human brains and rationalization being what they are, they are all team two kids. So how about you all? Are there any posters of team one and done? I would love to hear your thoughts. And of course anyone else's that wants to chime in.

    Two kids is not actually twice the work of one, but, that's because you can trim all the fact off the first kids parenting strategy and get twice the amount done without twice the work.

    Effectively the decision you have to make is,do you want to be a ringmaster, or a clown. If you have two then if they are close in age for the first like 10 years of their lives they will play together, and your job will be to keep that play safe and happy. If you have one, then you will have to get involved and help create the games.

    Two kids are also an emotional support network for each other in ways that will be hard for you to achieve. There is an inherent trust between children when they are young (assuming you create a positive and nurturing environment) that can help, and your child can have a home life that doesn't revolve entirely around you.

    But, two kids are double the chance of needing a sick day. Double the time spent helping with homework. Double the burden on the solo parent if you decide to have one of you go and do an activity.

    I mean, I hate to be stereotypical, but if you have an easy going girl and you get a middle of the road boy, he's going to burst through your happily ordered life like an atom bomb.

    This is not a guaranteed thing. My brother and I were 4 years apart, and I feel like we were pretty much always antagonistic towards each other, just about 24/7. Maybe there was a lot of time that we were fine together that I just don't remember, but basically until one of us moved out, it was some real tense going.

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  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    Mugsley wrote: »
    There are times every week where I question why we had a second child. Ours are 8 and 10. I'm trying to blame most of that on age, but I also know that the truly tough years are just around the corner.

    I'm not sure what other info you want. The biggest change for us was that one parent didn't get to have "time off" or a "breather" anymore. Instead we just swapped duties regularly. So for example, you couldn't have one parent go off and finish dishes while the other put the kid to bed. Now each kid requires a parent to help with bedtime.

    If you're comfortable with your decision and it's just social pressure, you'll find coping mechanisms to handle that. If you both are still having serious discussions and you want input, we can all try to give you anecdotes. It's all so subjective, though, that we can only go so far. If one of you wants more but the other doesn't, I recommend blocking time out to sit down and talk through it, or use some sort of counseling to help arbitrate (for lack of a better term).

    Anecdotes are exactly what I am looking for, because in our physical circle of friends we can only draw on anecdotes from multi-child families. Social pressure is a non-issue. We are both very comfortable making choices for ourselves. We had a good, long decision-making period for whether we wanted the first child to begin with. Gathered evidence, talked, and talked, and made a truly joint decision. Maybe I was slightly more responsible for going "yes, let's have a child, and let's have it in this timeframe" than my wife. But it was 55/45 me at most.

    No need for counseling, even though that's always a good suggestion to make. We are super on the same page, communicate about everything, and don't have divergent perspectives on the matter.

    Mugsley
  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    edited September 2019
    Capt Howdy wrote: »
    Space them out a good eight years like we (unintentionally) did. Having a 13 year old to help with the five year old is great. "Son, help your little brother build that Lego set. But Dad, isn't that your job? It was when you were that age, now you get to experience the "joy" of building with someone who thinks they know better than those damned instructions". (Yes, I'm half jesting about this)

    I don't get the double work line of thought. Half the difficulties of the first child is not having any experience with what to expect and what to do. Our second son is much easier compared to our first at this age. And that’s despite us being older. Though, again, the first son being older probably plays into that.

    That was just not our experience. We spent a lot of time prepping and learning. Everyone said "it's going to be so much different/harder than you expect." Not for us. Having our first child turned out exactly as we expected and prepared for. While it hasn't necessarily been easy (lack of sleep, etc), it has all been very straightforward and we knew what to do at every step. Plus, little enc0rette is just an angel.*

    *Perception may be influenced by dad-colored glasses and not representative of your experience.

    enc0re on
  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    Thanks so much everyone for the all the anecdotes so far. Even though it reinforces what we have been thinking so far, it's super valuable to hear from lived experience.

    I should also mention that she is an only-child and I am an immigrant. So the child(ren) we have is all the younger generation there is going to be of our family in this country. If we had a number of siblings/nieces/nephews living here, it would be much easier for us to be one-and-done.

  • Sir LandsharkSir Landshark resting shark face Registered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    enc0re wrote: »
    My little girl is 18 months old. This is the year for us to decide if we will have a second. So far we are leaning "no" (maybe 60% lean) mostly because we have a great, easy-going kid and our life is busy but really good and fun. I'm worry about upsetting that balance, taking the risk of a second kid, and then maybe it isn't so fun anymore. I can't help but think of when we went from one dog to two. The workload basically doubled but the enjoyment only went up a bit. After all how much more fun is it to play with two dogs as opposed to one? Also, our first dog is super easy while the second one requires a much firmer hand to stay in line.

    Of course I've asked for advice from my friends, but all of them have two kids (and one has four). Human brains and rationalization being what they are, they are all team two kids. So how about you all? Are there any posters of team one and done? I would love to hear your thoughts. And of course anyone else's that wants to chime in.

    Two kids is not actually twice the work of one, but, that's because you can trim all the fact off the first kids parenting strategy and get twice the amount done without twice the work.

    Effectively the decision you have to make is,do you want to be a ringmaster, or a clown. If you have two then if they are close in age for the first like 10 years of their lives they will play together, and your job will be to keep that play safe and happy. If you have one, then you will have to get involved and help create the games.

    Two kids are also an emotional support network for each other in ways that will be hard for you to achieve. There is an inherent trust between children when they are young (assuming you create a positive and nurturing environment) that can help, and your child can have a home life that doesn't revolve entirely around you.

    But, two kids are double the chance of needing a sick day. Double the time spent helping with homework. Double the burden on the solo parent if you decide to have one of you go and do an activity.

    I mean, I hate to be stereotypical, but if you have an easy going girl and you get a middle of the road boy, he's going to burst through your happily ordered life like an atom bomb.

    I don't understand why you're writing this so authoritatively. There's a lot here I disagree with. Our kids are spaced pretty close together, and while there are some great times where they entertain each other, that didn't really start until #1 was maybe 4 or 5? And even now, with ages 8, 6, 5, there's still plenty of friction and varying interest/capabilities for different games (#1 loves to play board games but #2 often struggles to understand the mechanics involved and then #1 gets frustrated. Or #1 and #2 will go outside to play kickball and #3 wants to play but she gets frustrated that she can't kick as well as her brothers and throws a fit).

    On top of that, two kids, especially in the early years, means chasing one toddler around while holding an infant. Or putting one kid down for nap and instead of getting to nap yourself, having to go deal with the other kid that's been waiting for your attention all day. Double the chances of a kid getting sick, or not sleeping well that night. Double the chances that one just has a shitty day for whatever reason.

    And then of course, you hit school and they start getting old enough to do things like go over to a friend's house without you or get dropped off for a birthday party alone, and wait you still have these other kids to either entertain or take to their own activities. So I don't really agree.

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  • Sir LandsharkSir Landshark resting shark face Registered User regular
    As to the original question, why did you have the first kid? And are those reasons still there, or are you pretty satisfied?

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  • BrodyBrody The Watch The First ShoreRegistered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    enc0re wrote: »
    My little girl is 18 months old. This is the year for us to decide if we will have a second. So far we are leaning "no" (maybe 60% lean) mostly because we have a great, easy-going kid and our life is busy but really good and fun. I'm worry about upsetting that balance, taking the risk of a second kid, and then maybe it isn't so fun anymore. I can't help but think of when we went from one dog to two. The workload basically doubled but the enjoyment only went up a bit. After all how much more fun is it to play with two dogs as opposed to one? Also, our first dog is super easy while the second one requires a much firmer hand to stay in line.

    Of course I've asked for advice from my friends, but all of them have two kids (and one has four). Human brains and rationalization being what they are, they are all team two kids. So how about you all? Are there any posters of team one and done? I would love to hear your thoughts. And of course anyone else's that wants to chime in.

    Two kids is not actually twice the work of one, but, that's because you can trim all the fact off the first kids parenting strategy and get twice the amount done without twice the work.

    Effectively the decision you have to make is,do you want to be a ringmaster, or a clown. If you have two then if they are close in age for the first like 10 years of their lives they will play together, and your job will be to keep that play safe and happy. If you have one, then you will have to get involved and help create the games.

    Two kids are also an emotional support network for each other in ways that will be hard for you to achieve. There is an inherent trust between children when they are young (assuming you create a positive and nurturing environment) that can help, and your child can have a home life that doesn't revolve entirely around you.

    But, two kids are double the chance of needing a sick day. Double the time spent helping with homework. Double the burden on the solo parent if you decide to have one of you go and do an activity.

    I mean, I hate to be stereotypical, but if you have an easy going girl and you get a middle of the road boy, he's going to burst through your happily ordered life like an atom bomb.

    I don't understand why you're writing this so authoritatively. There's a lot here I disagree with. Our kids are spaced pretty close together, and while there are some great times where they entertain each other, that didn't really start until #1 was maybe 4 or 5? And even now, with ages 8, 6, 5, there's still plenty of friction and varying interest/capabilities for different games (#1 loves to play board games but #2 often struggles to understand the mechanics involved and then #1 gets frustrated. Or #1 and #2 will go outside to play kickball and #3 wants to play but she gets frustrated that she can't kick as well as her brothers and throws a fit).

    On top of that, two kids, especially in the early years, means chasing one toddler around while holding an infant. Or putting one kid down for nap and instead of getting to nap yourself, having to go deal with the other kid that's been waiting for your attention all day. Double the chances of a kid getting sick, or not sleeping well that night. Double the chances that one just has a shitty day for whatever reason.

    And then of course, you hit school and they start getting old enough to do things like go over to a friend's house without you or get dropped off for a birthday party alone, and wait you still have these other kids to either entertain or take to their own activities. So I don't really agree.

    Yeah, but aren't you also on record as stating that 3 kids wasn't enough, and you won't be happy until your children blot out the sun?

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