Pregnant Again... Surprise Pregnancy with Baby Number 2, 3, 4, 5…

Third, Fourth, or Fifth ... Child

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How Is It Feasible?

  • Nowadays, anything more than the two-kid nuclear family is seen as beyond average. The thought of having a third, fourth, or fifth child would likely trigger mixed feelings. Perhaps you felt you were done with having children and set new goals for yourself.
  • Or maybe you are simply wondering how you and your family could rise to the challenge — logistically, financially, and energy-wise.
  • Even when expecting a second child, the question may arise of how to manage well. Sometimes parents also worry about not having enough love to go around. It may be hard to imagine what family life would look like when adding another member.

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Six Common Concerns and Workable Solutions

There are many reasons for having initial reservations about another pregnancy. Here is a summary of the most common obstacles women face and possible steps to overcome them.

#1: Finances

When an additional member joins the family, more of everything is needed. Even if you still have all the baby gear, you might need a bigger car or more living space. Perhaps other investments are draining your resources right now. This could dampen your joy over a new arrival.

Workable Solution: Financial Support

Sometimes it helps to make a list of which items are more urgently needed and what can wait. Oftentimes, a closer inspection will reveal this to be more manageable than initially anticipated.

Nevertheless, there may be times when you wonder how to manage financially — especially if money is tight already. Even then, solutions can be found. Your local pregnancy resource center will likely be able to provide support or show you where you can find it.  

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#2: Returning to Work

You may be on maternity leave and are planning on returning to work soon. Perhaps you were looking forward to the change in routine and had planned accordingly.

Understandably, you might wonder, “Do I have to prioritize someone else’s needs again? “When will I have time for me?”

Workable Solution: Creating Space for Yourself

You are right: It is essential to intentionally create space for yourself in your life — especially if you have several children.

Even if your return to work is postponed for a while: Schedule non-negotiable downtime for yourself regularly; perhaps there is a project you have always wanted to complete — plan for it! What kind of support could you avail yourself of? Could you occasionally hire a babysitter?

#3: He Is Not Open to Another Child

Perhaps you have already started bonding with the baby growing inside you, and your heart sinks when your partner’s reaction is different from yours.

While you may be looking forward to another little one, he may be concerned about whether he has what it takes to be a good father to an additional child. Perhaps he also has financial reservations, desiring to be a good provider for all of you. He may also be worried that you might have less time for one another. These are common reasons for fathers to have initial reservations regarding another baby.

Workable Solution 1: Give Him Time

Many dads react to the surprise and the challenge by being overwhelmed. It may encourage you to know that the majority of skeptical dads experience a change of heart — even those who initially reject having another baby eventually embrace the child wholeheartedly.

For now, give your partner time to deal with his reservations and come to terms with the idea that you are expecting again.

Workable Solution 2: Seek Quality Time as a Couple

During the busyness of everyday life, it is beneficial to your relationship as a couple to incorporate dates into your weekly routine. Creating alone time does not have to break the bank — eating out or taking a walk together would allow you to listen to one another and find common ground.

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Perhaps these suggestions do not apply to your situation because you are currently not in a committed relationship.

#4: Overwhelmed

Of course, each additional child is a test of your organizational skills.

Sometimes you may feel like you cannot keep up… You are not the only one who feels that way. The lives of others often look perfect on the outside — until you peel back the façade. Most moms know — from experience — what you are talking about.

Workable Solution 1: Life Hacks

Every mom discovers her own life hacks for her day-to-day life. What are some of yours? Do you save time and energy by occasionally ordering takeout and skipping meal prep? Do you welcome shortcuts, such as using paper plates and disposable diapers, to avoid spending as much time on cleanup? Do you insist on regular naptimes so that you can get some downtime for yourself? You can probably think of even more ways to simplify your life…

Sometimes, we need to set new priorities: Time for yourself and the kids is more important than keeping the house immaculate.

Workable Solution 2: Practical Support

This may be an opportunity to reevaluate your daily life. In which areas do you wish for more support? What is needed so you can thrive?

Many organizations offer practical support for free or for a small contribution. This may include babysitting or even an adopt-a-grandma project.

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#5: Malicious Gossip

“What will they say when they find out that I am expecting again?”

It is a sad truth that people think they need to voice their opinion regarding your family size. Everyone seems to know precisely when you should or should not have a baby. They will also promptly inform you of the appropriate number of children.

This kind of attitude is especially tough to shrug off when it comes from friends or family.

Workable Solution: Enjoying Family Life

It may be helpful to think about the fact that people love to gossip — often motivated by their desire to redirect others' attention from their issues.

Sometimes it is merely a matter of choosing to ignore the jabs while responding with kindness.

While the sensational value of this new baby will quickly be forgotten, the bond and comfort of a large family will last.

Perhaps reading the following letter written by a mother of five might provide you with some encouragement:

#6 Feeling Guilty

Parents who are more nurturing by nature may experience guilt at the thought of expecting again and wonder, "Will I be mom enough for everyone?"

Even second-time moms feel guilty for turning their firstborn's life upside down. Especially since the first child enjoys its parents' undivided loving attention, it may be hard to imagine how this loving care could be "divided up" between several children. The concern may arise that the first child would feel neglected.

When expecting one's third or beyond, it is easy to think, "I only have two arms; how can I take care of more than two kids?"

Workable Solution 1: Watch Your Love Grow

You may be familiar with the saying: "Love is the only thing that multiplies when divided."

This shows that love cannot be comprehended mathematically. It is not about "dividing" or splitting yourself in two. Love is capable of so much more.

Many parents experience the beauty of loving several children with unique traits and personalities. Caring for them may look different for each one since their needs are not the same.

Workable Solution 2: Getting the Siblings on Board

Siblings can learn things from each other, such as sharing, looking out for one another, being considerate, and sticking together. Of course, this can take on different forms depending on their age difference; but this bond can be significant for a lifetime.

Children enjoy discovering the world with their siblings. The fact that they can keep each other entertained can be used to your advantage.

Of course, adding a child is always an adjustment initially. But children quickly realize the importance of family and the beauty of belonging and working together.

Taking Your Next Steps…

Perhaps you are still wondering where to go from here, and your specific obstacle was not addressed in this article. Or maybe you are still trying to figure out how to put some of these ideas into practice.

Feel free to make use of our digital coaching resources to gain a fresh perspective on the road that lies before you:

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