Your baby is turning into a toddler, or perhaps they’re well on their way to primary school… Unless you’re someone who knows they only want one child, you might be starting to think about having another baby. The thought of getting pregnant again can be exciting but also stressful. You might be struggling to figure out if you are ready for another baby. We’ve come up with some questions to ask yourself and advice on how you can prepare yourself for the decision ahead.
Are you ready for more change?
Your routine with your current child or children might be down pat, and you might be very comfortable in your life now. You’re through those dreaded sleepless nights and the thought of doing them again fills you with dread… Be prepared to have a messy schedule again once that newborn has arrived. But at least this time you know that it won’t last forever – you have been through it and made it out the other side.
In those first few months it will be chaotic, if you only have one other child, consider the balance you will need to have for both children. Ensuring your current baby is sleeping all through the night and is slightly independent is also important to take into consideration, having two restless babies will cause you more exhaustion.
Can you afford it?
Finances should also play a role in your decision-making. Being financially stable for another baby is crucial (e.g. nappy costs, daycare, formula). If you’re unable to feel secure in being able to provide the same for your new baby like your first child, you should think about waiting until you and your partner (if you have one) can afford to care for another child.
What will you do about work?
Are you also working? Your work-life may have just started back up, or you may have been working for a while (depending on your existing children’s age). Consider what would happen to that aspect of your life; check their maternity leave policies and reflect on any sacrifices you will need to make.
Your own age and health
Your age is another factor to think about; fertility can rapidly drop after your mid-30s and risks to the baby pop up in your late 30s to your early 40s. That’s not to say you can’t have a perfectly healthy pregnancy and baby in your later years, but it is important to take this into consideration. Consult with your doctor or health professionals and take on their advice on what the best course of action is.
Where does your partner stand?
Finally, you might feel ready, but your partner might not. This can be a typical disagreement amongst parents and can cause you to feel helpless. Before jumping to any conclusions, consider why your partner may be feeling this way. Perhaps they’re not as settled in their routine with your current children, or they might not feel financially ready. Having constructive discussions and listening to their concerns can help you come to a decision that works for you both.
Deciding to have another baby shouldn’t be rushed, it takes time and there are many things to think about. After you both are satisfied with your decision, you can get ready to have that new baby. Enjoy the ride, it might be bumpy, but it will be worth it in the end!