Best number of years between kids?

“Are you planning to have another baby soon?”

Now that Emma has turned one, I have gotten an increased number of inquiries about when my “next baby” might be born. Wow. I thought I still had plenty of time to get used to having one baby in the house, but the more I look around, the more I realize a lot of women have babies 2 years apart.

So, here’s my question for the moms and dads out there. How far apart are your kids, and do you think it works well for your family? Do the kids get along well? Or for those who have one child — what are the pros and cons of stopping after one?

My husband grew up with two older brothers, and I had two much older sisters. However, I didn’t have much of a relationship with my sisters. I think I want Emma to have someone to play with and confide in as she gets older — but I also see a lot of advantages to having an only child. This is going to come as a major shock to many of you, but I did not “like” being pregnant. I did not enjoy losing control of my body/weight gain/etc. Soooo, I am certainly not in any big rush to get pregnant again. A potential second pregnancy would be about wanting a sibling for Emma.

I am truly curious about your opinions because I have not heard this topic discussed much. I know there are so many factors, but for the kids’ sake — what seems to work well?

13 thoughts on “Best number of years between kids?

  1. Samantha says:

    Mine is only 2.5 months but I too think about when we will have a second child. Im curious to see your results!! I think 2-3 years so they can have a lot in common and even go to the same schools.
    ❤ Sam

  2. Melanie Scheerschmidt says:

    I love that the Visa ad following your post was about life-changing events that happen in a hundredth of a second!! Because that’s how quickly you can go from thinking about another child to carrying another child!! ha!

    Seriously, the timing has to be up to the couple–what are your goals, or even your motives for conceiving an another eternal being. I believe you mentioned in a post that it was somewhat miraculous that you have Emma! Mine were not necessarily planned, so I am speaking loosely here! My three sons were each less than 2 years apart. And that was beautiful. And it put a great deal of stress on our young marriage, and thus on my babies. But did I mention how cool it was that they were so close! And how difficult that they were often corralled by a tired momma who “just needed a break.” Funny thing, we waited three years before having Amy…and I had already forgotten A LOT about babies.

    Respecting others’ decisions is key, and good communication and calendar reading is crucial to your family planning goals!!

    • Amanda Tress says:

      GREAT advice Mel! I agree — it’s certainly up to motives for conceiving, etc. Yes, It was a big deal that I got pregnant the first time, so I have no idea how hard/easy/possible it will even be to get pregnant again, but I would be doing it for Emma — so she has a sibling. I always envied my friends who had a sister or brother to hang around with. I don’t think I will ever get “baby fever” so I am trying to be a little more objective about it! Lol.

  3. hotwellrn says:

    My kids are 22 months apart and I think this was a perfect age for us. They are very close and hug and kiss each other all the time. They obviously have their arguments but it is never anything like my sister and I were. (we are 28 months apart and fought all the time.) When I took my childbirth refresher course, our instructor said it is best to have a second before the first turns 2 because after a few weeks the first will not remember being by him or her self. I wasn’t sure how my son would do when we brought my daughter home because he is such a momma’s boy but he has loved her from the beginning. I think the most important thing no matter the age gap is to include the other child. We always said when I was pregnant that it was our baby. My son is very protective of his younger sister. My youngest is now 2 1/2 and we are expecting our 3rd. Both kids are very excited and my daughter calls it her baby. I am looking forward to seeing their reactions when they see it at my sono later this month!

    • Amanda Tress says:

      Aw! That is great! Sounds like your kids have a great relationship, and that is what I would hope for! And congrats on being pregant with your third!!! I am sure they will both love their new baby brother 🙂

  4. sportsbrasandsippycups says:

    My daughter just turned two and we too have been getting plagued with this question. We are still on the fence about when or if we will be ready for baby number two. I am enjoying my daughter growing up and she is doing it so fast, I don’t want to miss anything. Although I am not sure i would want them to be more than 5 years apart. 4 to me seems reasonable.

    • Amanda Tress says:

      I hear ya! I can’t believe how many people ask me the question too! Yeah — 5 years apart seems far, but then they wouldn’t be in college at the same time, which might be nice 🙂 I agree — I don’t want to miss anything with my daughter growing up either, so I am afraid that my attention would be split too much if I hurried to have another. We’ll see!

  5. Kayla says:

    My husband and I have not had kids yet but think that 2 years apart would be great based on what we have seen in other families. Him and his one sister were 4 years apart and he thinks that was too much since they didn’t really get close until after college. My mom had 6 kids and they were all about 16 months apart – but in two sets (my mom was married twice). We were all able to play together and be in the same stages around the same time.

    • Amanda Tress says:

      Thanks Kayla! Yeah, my husband and his next oldest brother were 4 years apart, and that seems to be a big gap. That’s fun that you had 6 kids in your family to play with! Thanks for reading and commenting!!

  6. Stephanie H. (@fitmomtraining) says:

    I honestly think it depends entirely on you and your kids. I have almost exactly 2 years between my boys and so far, it’s been ok and I think it’s a good age gap that they will grow into nicely together. If we had another, I’d wait a bit longer because it can be very hectic the first months. I also know of many that have much greater or much less of an age gap and manage just fine. I think it depends on how much you can take on and where you’re kids are at. No matter what though, if you love on them and teach them the important life lessons, that’s all they need. Remember that no matter the age gap, they won’t know any different 🙂

    • Amanda Tress says:

      Hi Stephanie! You’re right — no matter the age gap, they won’t know any different 🙂 I was kinda thinking that if we had another one sooner rather than later — I might wait a few years before considering a third. I want Emma to have someone to play with at some point. Thanks for reading!

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