The Elusive Second Child

I always dreamed of having two children.  So did Mr. MPB.

Eventually our dream became to simply have one living child.

We now have that dream thanks to Baby MPB.

Yet, I already feel my heart longing for another.  I’ve already said on multiple occasions, if I could have another one without compromising Baby MPB’s lifestyle and future I would, in a heartbeat.

Yet, we are already giving away and selling Baby MPB’s things that we no longer need. Because the dream of a second child feels unachievable.  The facts for us are simple:

  • International adoption will cost us another $80,000+.
  • Local adoption will be at least a 3+ year wait.
  • My body will not sustain the life of a fetus without significant intervention which we cannot get locally and thus would cost us $80,000+.  And, the intervention does not come with a guarantee.
  • A gestational carrier has never really been a viable option for us (read all of that here).
  • We are tens of thousands of dollars in debt due to the bills associated with our current adoption.  This will take at least a few years to pay off.
  • We are not contributing to Baby MPB’s education fund in the way we’d like to.  It has always been our goal to be able to afford to pay for his post secondary education (if he wants to go) so that he will not accumulate his own debt to start out adulthood.
  • I’ve never wanted my children to be many years apart.  And for us to adopt locally or finding a way to pay for another adoption will take us years.

So, rationally, we cannot have another child.  And, like it or not, Mr. MPB and I are extremely rational people.  We took our leap of faith when we adopted our son, and honestly, he’s as close to perfect as humanly possible.  He’s all I could ever have dreamed for.  Heck, he’s more then I ever dreamed for!

And so, I’m finding these days I’m saying things like:

  • Being an only child isn’t a bad thing.  He’ll make great friends and be involved in a lot of social activities – bring on soccer and hockey!
  • There’s a 99.9% chance Baby MPB will be an only child, so we’d better make the most of these baby days.
  • With only one child, we should be able to afford to travel and experience the world Baby MPB the world.  Maybe we’ll even be able to buy our dream second home in the mountains one day.
  • If by some miracle we have another child one day we can just re-purchase everything we are getting rid of now.
  • With only one child, we should be able to pay for his post-secondary education so that he will be debt free coming out of university.
  • Maybe we could foster other children.  Or do respite for other foster families so that Baby MPB will have other kids around and we will have other kids around to fill our house with love, joy and silly chaos that’s we’ve always hoped for.  I’m confident that we’d get approved since we already have a government approved home study so we don’t have to worry about that.

Maybe I’m just trying to convince myself that we’ll be okay with one.

Maybe my heart will always long for another.

Regardless, all I know is that our one child is perfect and if he’s the only child to ever call me mommy I’ll be okay with that.  Every single day I am thankful to be his mommy!

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19 Comments on “The Elusive Second Child

  1. You know if I had the time I would have spaced my kids 4 years apart. Right now with them so close, I am not a mom to both, just surviving. Thats just me though. i am sure there are moms who have 3 under 4 years. However, never say never. Things could change, maybe the next Lotto Max is yours! 🙂 but I get you and the desire for another child. i truly do, hugs.

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  2. I was wondering where you were with this. I think fostering sounds like a great potential plan. As my little guy gets older without a sibling in sight, I keep hearing more and more stories about the value of a larger age gap. Each child has more attention, less rivalry, better family dynamics, stage out the empty nest etc. All that being said- accepting one child has really been in the back of my mind too. Wishing you peace with this decision. Xo

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  3. I loved being an only child. My family still couldn’t afford to travel or pay for my education even with just me, so that didn’t even factor into it. I was thankful for being an only child because I got all of my parent’s affection and attention, I felt like the most special person in their lives, and I developed a kick ass imagination and I think it helped me to become a leader, marching to the beat of my own drum, etc. I think having only children is wonderful! With or without a sibling, baby MPB is gonna be one lucky kid.

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  4. I know you didn’t want a several year age gap, but is putting yourself on a local adoption list now out of the question? If I recall correctly, it’s a pretty inexpensive option (the down side being the wait!) and you could always take yourself out if you change your mind. But if you do still feel a longing for another child, you would have the option with a 3-4 year age difference.

    On the other hand, I am also struggling with the one baby or two question– without the added difficulty of infertility or RPL. I thought we would be one and done. Life is simpler with one. We can devote all of our time, attention, and money to her. Studies show only children tend to have better friendships to make up for a lack of a sibling. Then there’s the not insignificant likelihood that she wouldn’t have a good relationship with a sibling…many do not! And last but not least, we really have been blessed with an angel of a kid, so easygoing! Number 2 could be a lot harder and complicate life beyond just having two kids. All compelling reasons. But as I get older and my family ages, I worry about her– not as a child, but when she grows up and her own family (us!) ages and passes away. Is that enough of a reason to have a second child? We haven’t decided yet. I can’t forimagine adding in the complexities you face…but whatever you decide I’m sure will be right for you and your family and you will all have peace about it. There’s just no single right way.

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  5. You and MR. MPB are very thoughtful people and I feel strongly that you will make the right decision for you both. Baby MPB is so lucky to have parents like you and however your family ends up will be perfect. I can see how this is a hard thing to think about so I wish you peace with whatever will be. Hugs.

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  6. I hear you and I don’t even have a baby in my arms at this point. I want two, but I am a realist and one is likely the reality of all this. There will always be a sadness around the fact that I didn’t really choose this path rather it was chosen for me. But perhaps that is the universes plan because we can be the best gosh darn only child parents on the block. 🙂

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  7. I truly wish there were some way for you to have the second child that you long for. That said, as an only child myself, I can reassure you that Baby MPB will not suffer from being an only child! He’ll grow up fast spending lots of time around adults, and as you say, there will be more resources for you to show him the world and help him with his education.

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  8. These are the exact same thoughts that I feel and see with other mums. It’s friggin expensive to have a baby! And we also want to be able to travel. I finally feel at peace with that but it does come out and haunt me from time to time that E won’t have a sibling. I swore my whole life that I would never be the mother of an only child and here I am.

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  9. This post makes a lot of sense and has so much gratitude in it. It sounds like you are doing so well and making good, sound decisions for the here and now at least. We can only make decisions for what we can foresee, and then life usually changes on us anyway! Meaning…maybe a baby will come into your life, simply, with just the help of a lawyer or something some day. You never know! We also go back and forth with this all the time. We will get this bio baby home – crossing our fingers – and then plan to keep pursuing adoption but we will just have to see what it entails! Much love to you and your strong spirit.

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  10. So many things to think about! I don’t know if you have any interest, but we have found that creating a childcare swap with a family with compatible values has created a sibling-like experience for Darwin, and I feel like we’re all alloparenting each others kids. It takes being in the right mindset and finding the right family to work though.

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  11. Growing up in a house with so many siblings and so little “stuff”, was one of the best things I could have asked for, but when there wasn’t enough to go around, I always thought, “I wish I were an only child! Things would be much, much better!” I mean, things can absolutely change from here to another 2 years. Become foster parents! It’s amazing! I mean, the drama isn’t, but so many people get so so lucky. One of our friends, got a little girl 3 days out of the hospital. 16 months later they are a foever family. You never know! Either way, even if it does end up being just the 3 of you for all time, there are always grandbabies, and even after 4 kids (and maybe more one day), i am absolutely looking forward to that!

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  12. I hope that one day you will have another miracle come into your lives and that maybe baby will have a sibling. But if that’s not what fate has in store for your family, then there is absolutely nothing wrong with being an only child! You make some valid points on the benefits of having only one child, and those are all huge things. Maybe one day you will foster, and I think that would be a fabulous thing for you guys to do. I know it’s hard to not think about the future, but also try to live in today and enjoy all these moments and days that you have right now! ❤

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  13. I really appreciate that you tackled this concern on your blog. I primarily experienced secondary infertility (depending on how one views it), and I find that not many people give consideration to what you said in the opening line – “I always dreamed of having two children.” So did I, and I believe many of us did. And it’s a valid dream. The problem is when those of us who have one child express our desire to have another, and are met with some not so nice comments.

    I’m sorry that your options for having a second child are not ideal. That sucks. I appreciate what Mamalife said about wishing she could have spaced her kids 4 years apart. Initially (before my miscarriage), my kids would have been spaced 2 years apart. When all was said and done, they were almost exactly 4 years apart, and I couldn’t be more relieved for all of the reasons that mamajo mentioned above.

    In saying all of this, I do believe that only children thrive extremely well. Not only do I believe this, I see it every day with only children. Three person families are becoming more and more common, and the benefits are becoming much clearer.

    It might feel like you’re in a tough place with all of this, but in the end, whatever happens will be for the best. I know that sounds totally cliche, but I believe in that. Thanks again for sharing!

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  14. You never know what the future holds so I think there is no need to give up on the possibility yet. Sure it is great to be realistic but truly, life can surprise you sometimes. Also unless you were brining a sibling into the family within the next 2 years I would recommend getting rid of the stuff anyway. Mine did not store as well as I’d hoped (we have an almost 5 year gap) even though I tried really hard to make sure it was protected so we have chucked a lot more stuff than we intended. Economically we would have been better off selling it all second hand when done with it and then re-purchasing this time around. We actually would have made a bit of money back that way.

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  15. Gosh…such a tough thing to get your mind around isn’t it? I’ve always wanted multiple children too and just tonight we were talking about that. I said something like “I’d love for Luke to have a sibling but if not he’s all I’ll ever need” and I know you feel the same about baby MPB.

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  16. Just read your gestational carrier post on relation to this one. I have been a gestational surrogate. I did so without an agency, with contracts drawn up by us, and signed, (basically good faith documents, probably not enforceable, we knew that). We worked with a clinic that offered 3 IVF cycles for one price. Meaning if the first try didn’t work, we had two more tries at no additional cost. While I know none of it was “cheap” I think we did this much more reasonably than any of us thought. My insurance didn’t exclude surrogacy and so medical was covered. Parents just needed to cover IVF and what they compensated me. I wasn’t a girl looking for extras.

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