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Feel like I'm betraying my firstborn when I contemplate a second child

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#1 MotherMonkey

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:03 PM

I'm going to do my best to explain this without sounding insane...!

My son is 18 months old & I've always thought I'd have 3 children probably about 3 years apart, but since having him I can't believe how inlove I can be with one small person &, as a result, I'm suffering tremendous guilt when considering having another. It's like I'm cheating on him just thinking about loving another baby...

Logically I know it's ridiculous (I felt the same way about the dog when I was pregnant!), I've told myself that Number 1 would love a sibling to play with etc., & I know I'm most likely depriving myself of the second love of my life (third if you include the hubby!), but I just can't get past the guilt of no longer having my first born as the centre of my universe.

Please don't get me wrong, I'm not a psycho over-protective mum who won't leave her sons side, I still go off to work and do all my normal stuff, I'm just besotted by my boy original.gif
I know I will love another baby (although I do fear that if it's possible to love it as much as the first my heart may in fact explode), but I fear the guilt may actually stop me even trying. (& then I feel guilty about the poor second baby, but we won't even go in to that!!!)

My husband is very understanding (he's quite used to my craziness!) & tells me he's ready whenever I am, but I think I just need to speak to some people who have been in the same boat so they can tell me how wonderful it is having a bigger family & that It will actually make me a better mother to my son because....? (this is where you come in...) wink.gif

#2 Tesseract

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:07 PM

The love in your heart isn't a finite resource that is divided up amongst your family and friends. When you have another baby you won't love your DS less, your heart will just bigger to accommodate the new baby. And so will your DS's (eventually!).

#3 Kay1

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:11 PM

This is extremely normal!  Most mothers I know felt the same when thinking about a second child or when pregnant with #2.

Your heart won't explode, the extra love just fits in and you really do love the second just as much as the first, without taking away any from #1, its amazing. original.gif

And the gift of giving your child a sibling is wonderful. I adore watching my two boys together. They love each other so much. I adore my DS1 but now I can't imagine him without his little partner in crime. They bring each other so much joy and companionship. wub.gif

I must admit though that I liked the age gap we had (nearly 3 years), I think this made it easier as DS1 could talk and we could explain why we couldn't do x right now etc. I think I might have felt guiltier if he was still a toddler who couldn't understand why I wasn't seeing to him immediately.

#4 PreachersWife

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:13 PM

QUOTE (Tesseract @ 07/05/2012, 02:07 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The love in your heart isn't a finite resource that is divided up amongst your family and friends. When you have another baby you won't love your DS less, your heart will just bigger to accommodate the new baby. And so will your DS's (eventually!).

This is so true and made me feel all squishy!

I'm pregnant with #3 and this sums it up for me, that plus this...

Seeing my daughter and son play, hug, kiss fills my heart with even more love for both of them. And now the way my four year old interacts with my belly just adds to the excitement.

#5 hiccamups

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:14 PM

Your heart just gets bigger OP.  You'll feel the overwhelming, heart popping love you do for your first, with your second.  It's amazing how much love we are capable of.

And there is a lot of guilt to endure when raising children.  For me, the biggest guilt came from having to reject my first so I could settle my second.  But you know what, I believe it's character building for your elder child.  Imagine a world where we never had to learn to take the back seat? Where we never had to wait, or be ok not being the centre of the universe.

It's tough, but it all works out.

#6 Isolabella

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:17 PM

QUOTE (Tesseract @ 07/05/2012, 02:07 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The love in your heart isn't a finite resource that is divided up amongst your family and friends. When you have another baby you won't love your DS less, your heart will just bigger to accommodate the new baby. And so will your DS's (eventually!).

Yep even at 36wks PG with #2 I would be cuddling with DS1 and think how can I love any more?. Well as PP have said love is not a finite resource, your heart just gets bigger and your love encompasses all. With #3 I never had any 2nd thoughts as I already knew after #2 that my heart would grow bigger still.

#7 pitzinoodles

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:18 PM

Totally normal emotion! Amazingly you can love your second just as much as your first. After a little while the second is big enough to play with the first and you realise you gave both your children the gift of a sibling - which is a beautiful thing biggrin.gif

Edited by pitzinoodles, 07 May 2012 - 02:19 PM.

#8 7girly-girls

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:24 PM


Edited by 7girly-girls, 16 June 2014 - 12:05 PM.

#9 ~kacee~

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:36 PM

The loveliest way I've heard it described is that your love doesn't halve, it doubles  wub.gif With baby #2 due in a few weeks, I understand the guilt, but I also think giving a sibling is the best present you can give.

#10 Guest_Nyz31_*

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:47 PM

I know exactly how you feel.... number two is due in 3 weeks and I've had the guilts from day one about our daughter having to 'share' us with someone else. BUT I remember my Nanna saying what a lonely childhood she had being an only child and not having any cousins nearby and also where they lived was on the outskirts of town not to mention that her Mum was divorced (very tsk tsk tsk in those days).... so that makes me feel better about it. We also don't have any family within 5 hours and we don't have a huge circle of friends here so it will be lovely for our poppet to have someone to play with (apart from me and her Dad!). And to be honest, I think she would love having a sibling, at such a young age, she's already very considerate and kind to other children, especially those younger than her. My biggest concern now is that she is going to think the baby is hers and no one elses! hehe

#11 MotherMonkey

Posted 07 May 2012 - 02:49 PM

Omigosh you girls are just devine, thank you so much for replying to my nonsense!

I LOVE the idea of #1 having a 'little buddy' & I'm kind of hoping that at age 3 he might be a little more independent of me anyway?

I must admit though that because we have such a cool time together & are mostly by ourselves the idea of not being able to hang out all the time just us seems a bit sad still sad.gif

#12 i-love-my-son

Posted 07 May 2012 - 05:55 PM


Edited by i-love-my-son, 01 July 2012 - 10:59 AM.

#13 hiccamups

Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:08 PM

I must admit though that because we have such a cool time together & are mostly by ourselves the idea of not being able to hang out all the time just us seems a bit sad still

I know OP, it's heartbreaking. It's all part of them growing up though, sadly.  You wait until they're at school every day.  Oh, that's just tears and heartache all over again.

I imagine it never ends - when they get married, have their own children.   wub.gif

#14 nicknick

Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:16 PM

Oh I was only having this conversation this morning with some friends - with a week and a bit to go until bub 2 arrives it's doing my head in. I like the way Howls describes your heart getting bigger  original.gif

#15 SuboptimallyPooks

Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:18 PM

I feel bad that I don't want any more like I'll be denying him something. Ahhh we mothers are good at guilt.

#16 Kay1

Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:24 PM

I must admit though that because we have such a cool time together & are mostly by ourselves the idea of not being able to hang out all the time just us seems a bit sad still

I remember thinking that when DS1 was that age. By nearly 3 he was a very different child and while our bond was just as strong, he was pretty hard work and a day of daycare a week was a lifesaver for me. Absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that LOL. Also you will still be with him, you'll just have another little person to look after.

#17 Black Lion

Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:38 PM

I remember this feeling well.

I also remember looking at DD1 and thinking that she was just the most beautiful baby, and how would I cope if I had another daughter who wasn't as pretty (I know it sounds totally shallow, but I hated being compared to my own sister who was always much thinner, more athletic, petite, has gorgeous hair... etc)?

I am totally in love with both my DDs. They look different (both gorgeous, of course) they have different personalities, different strengths and natural abilites and I love them both for who they are.  With both my girls my heart is near bursting (still).

agree with other PPs about watching them together- I love that they love each other so much. othing better than hearing one call out to the other when they are hurt/sick/tired! Of course they argue too happy.gif

#18 Lilura

Posted 08 May 2012 - 10:28 AM

I felt the same having my daughter, and admittedly we've had a few bumps because my DS is 8, so is kind of used to being the one and only, but i love them both equally!

I find it really fun and amazing to see how different they are, and seeing them interact is awesome.

I think its pretty normal, but you will make it work original.gif

#19 MotherMonkey

Posted 08 May 2012 - 01:28 PM

Thank you so much everyone.
"Ahh we mothers are good at guilt"

I completely agree that I'm sure I'd find something else to feel bad about if it wasn't this!
It just seems such a risk! And at double or nothing kind of odds...
It's like someone saying to me I have risk the relationship I have with my son for the chance to win twice as much love.
But I know things won't stay the same for ever, it's just so easy to torture myself about it!

#20 *mylittleprince*

Posted 08 May 2012 - 01:37 PM

If you are both keen, I say go for it.

I absolutely adores DS, he is 3 in September and my little best friend. We have such fun together, I love hanging out and doing stuff and he is a wonderful little person. I'm due with twins just after he turns 3 and at first I felt similar to you, then I thought what a joy to give him siblings. I absolutely adore my sister and it's such a special bond to have a sibling. I think it's not just about feeding/settling a baby, etc but giving them each time. #1 will sometimes have to wait while baby is feeding/being changed, etc and baby will sometimes have to wait while you are busy with #2. I'm going to keep doing things DS loves (playdates, parks, playgroup, etc) so he doesn't feel like his whole world has changed and the babies have taken over.

#21 MotherMonkey

Posted 08 May 2012 - 09:40 PM

You're right MyLittlePrince, I shouldn't look at it like we'll be missing out on things, I should just see it as a challenge to get twice as much fun in!
Thank you x

#22 CallMeFeral

Posted 08 May 2012 - 09:52 PM

I felt the same.
No. 2, however, happened as an accident when DD was only 4 months old.

And now when I hear them laughing and giggling together, and hear about them playing together at daycare even though they have so many other kids to play with, and see how they are comfortable in any situation because they have eachother, and how much they are each others best friends - I thank my stars for that accident.

And who knew - I can dote on two children just as much as I doted on one! The only downside is that I feel TWICE as vulnerable as there are two of them to protect and worry about now.

#23 lozoodle

Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:16 AM

It's normal, you get over it pretty quick. I adore my second just as much and now we are trying for a third original.gif

#24 BVB09

Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:26 AM


We were axactly the same when we were contemplating having our second child after being so in love with the first child. When I had my second it was the same feeling all over again.

They try and battle for my affection, but I have plenty of love to go around for the two ! wub.gif  wub.gif

#25 lilwonder

Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:13 PM

I felt exactly the same when pregnant with my second, but after seeing her with her brother over the last year I have absolutely no guilt left - what she has gained in her relationship with him makes the time and attention she now has to share a total non issue. So much so I am now unexpectedly pregnant with my third and I have hardly felt guilty in the slightest as I know it will just mean more love for our family and it will enhance the lives of my kids even further

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