Couples tend to get a lot of attention when they make the transition to parenthood. But when couples decide they want to have more children and extend the family, they don’t get the same level of support.
Evidence does suggest that couples who plan to have a second child have a strong ability to keep their relationship strong and are therefore more likely to stay together. However, that doesn’t mean that couples who are planning baby number don’t need any help.
Read on for tips on how to cope with a growing family.
Making the decision together
The happiest couples with children tend to be those who make a joint decision to become parents. If both parents share the same intentions and both are actively involved in the decision-making process, then they tend to handle the experience of a growing family much better.
If you want to have more children try sitting down together and planning what you want. Consider the following:
- how many children do you imagine having?
- how far apart would you ideally like the children to be born?
- what sort of role do you imagine playing in the upbringing of future children? Will the balance of caregiving change?
You may also want to discuss how day-to-day things will change. Consider how you will manage to care for the first and second child, how you will split chores, how your sleeping patterns will be affected and how you will schedule ‘couple time’.
Children are rather expensive to care for so when an extra child comes along, the money will become even tighter.
Men typically tend to spend more time at work when a family grows – this can also cause strain on the couple and family relationships.
If you’re planning to have another child, or are currently expecting another child, it may be worth considering the following:
- Can both of you work if you have more children?
- Will one partner be expected to work extra hours in order to provide?
- Are you able to afford childcare?
- Are relatives or trusted friends available to help provide childcare if you can’t cover the cost?