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I was just looking at someone's sig who has a few more dc than me. We've got some whose ages match up, & the rest of hers are either older than my corresponding kid or older than all of mine.

 

She mentioned it being hard, her being busy, but I saw the ages, & all I could see were kids who could bathe themselves, wipe their bottoms, read to themselves, & help w/ littles. I realize there's more school work to go w/ bigger kids, but I'm good at that part of parenting. AND I like it, lol.

 

All that's to say--it dawned on me--it only gets easier from here. IF we have more children, nothing will be as hard as the years we've just finished.

 

Then the flash of insight faded & I realized I probably only thought that because I haven't dealt w/ teenagers. I actually probably could be more tired than I am. :lol:

 

So look at my kids' ages: 2, 3, 7, 9--if we don't have any more (& we're not planning to), I don't care what you say. I choose to believe it gets easier. :smilielol5: (It already is--words are *so* nice.)

 

But what about having more? Is it true that after 4, a couple more is no big deal? (It's midnight & I'm randomly wondering, don't read any plans into this.)

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I'll testify that it definitely gets much easier once the kids are house broken. I've got 3 teens and a 9yo and things are much easier. When DD9 was a baby, she was much easier than her sibs because there was always an extra pair of hands to help out with her.

 

Teens may present you with more complicated parenting challenges, but the physical work is much lighter.

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I had a neighbor who thought big families were easy until she had her 5th kid. That one gave her a run for her money. I remember her telling me that if he had been her first, he would have been her only. This was a kid who could climb to the top of the refrigerator before he was 3yo.

 

That would be #3 for me. Thankfully, the sleep deprivation that following year, w/ the combined efforts of her..."quirky" personality & surprise baby #4 gestating while she was only 3mos old served as a complete mental block. I know it was hard, but I have no idea how hard. Now I've got these 2 adorable toddlers that came out of nowhere. And a couple of white hairs that did the same. :lol:

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Agreeing with AK Mom! We have seven ranging in age from 17 down to 2, all *about* two years apart, and the olders are such a huge help with family affairs (including child care). I joke that I haven't buckled a kid in the car in YEARS -- although it's an exaggeration. If I need to take a nap, I can. If I need to run errands, I don't have to load several kids up in order to do so.

 

So far so good with the teenagers -- there are bumps and tears and tenseness and "discussion" of course. But they know we love them and are dedicated to their well-being, and we know they're hearts are tender toward us.

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I'll testify that it definitely gets much easier once the kids are house broken. I've got 3 teens and a 9yo and things are much easier. When DD9 was a baby, she was much easier than her sibs because there was always an extra pair of hands to help out with her.

 

Teens may present you with more complicated parenting challenges, but the physical work is much lighter.

 

That's funny. Mine spent the afternoon outside in the rain, coming back & forth to tell me, "I got some rain!" & then spreading squishy wet hands on my head to "share." :lol:

 

"House broken" can have so many meanings!

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Physicallly its easier as kids get older, but mentally this mama is beat! Actually pysically, driving kills me and I seem to drive alot!

 

I went from 3 to 5 so I can't answer how things balance out after 4. I just remember going into shock with 3 kids. All the sudden my husband and I were out numbered!

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Hmm...

 

Well, I think it gets easier and harder at the same time. It is not so physically exhausting as it was when I have five 8 and under. It is much richer and far deeper in conversation and day to day life together--truly a deep blessing! I love the relationship I have with all my children, but my teen children are just amazing to me. I have to say though that having such a relationship takes a lot of work/development before you land in the teen years. It is a blessing from God that we have the relationship we do because most of the time I feel like a bumbling mama.

 

We have very open communication and I have never let them remove themselves from relationship with me. I have striven to maintain a closeness even when we were not getting along and that has been tough to do at times when I have felt we didn't share much in common. I have had to go out of my own comfort zone at different times to maintain it.

 

I am FAR from a perfect parent, but I think having older children is the richest reward of parenting. It is ten times better than a new baby in my mind and worth every bit of work it takes to get there. God has, over and over, given my dh and I different avenues of being who He wants us to be to our children. We sin over and over, but His grace is what keeps us going on the path He has set before us.

 

He gets the praise for our family life. :001_smile:

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It got way easier for me when my youngest turned 4. People used to tell me all the time that it gets harder when you're schlepping them around all over the place. That's where we are now and it has its hard moments but is still WAY easier than 4 under 5. I refuse to believe anything is harder than that (and apparently Michelle Duggar will back me up). I like the big kid stuff way more than the little kid stuff, too. I like not having to put up things that could break and not having to jump up and run across the room every time they're in imminent danger, which is mulitple times a day.

 

I've wondered if, now that the kids are older and more helpful, we could handle another family member more easily. However, we did 36 hours of babysitting in the last couple weeks, and while DD10 is helpful, being the responsible party is still draining. So I'm not sure about the "after you have 4, what's one more?" argument. But it's been a while since I've had a toddler, so that might be why.

 

That said, I don't know about teens. I'm inclined to think that all the time we've spent together and all the work we've done on character development will have an effect on what kind of teens they are...not that they'll be perfect, but that hopefully at least *some* of what we've worked on all these years will stick??

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I'll testify that it definitely gets much easier once the kids are house broken. I've got 3 teens and a 9yo and things are much easier. When DD9 was a baby, she was much easier than her sibs because there was always an extra pair of hands to help out with her.

 

Teens may present you with more complicated parenting challenges, but the physical work is much lighter.

 

 

I love my kids, but let me tell you, when my two oldest (or three even) are not home, life is soooo good. The very oldest is already in college. I was thinking the other night why this was so and concluded it was because them being teenagers dh and I feel very responsible about them learning and behaving right and enough etc. etc. so we feel tense most of the time, trying to direct them and guide them. They also have a lot of needs to be driven places and making the right social connections so that takes real time.

 

I have been on top of the game all the time (I think!), but #8 got to me. She is actually the easiest of all my kids, but perhaps due to that, then I am enjoying her and not staying on top of everything like I used to.....

 

In general, then I agree that if you raise the first bunch fine, then the others will do OK. Dynamics change a lot, though, which we are finding now. About being busy, then I make time for what will fill our social and emotional needs.

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I'm currently preparing for #5 while also gearing up for the teen years. :001_huh:

 

I see many pros and cons, and I'm counting on it being a wash!

 

My 3 oldest are beginning to provide more help around the house. They can handle 2 of the 3 daily meals, plus snacks, on their own (and helping the 3yo) when needed. The 12yo can do most school work completely independently when needed, and the next two can work with limited assistance when needed. The 3yo is close to being potty trained. And only the 3yo needs serious supervision. I can send the others out to play without worrying much.

 

On the con side, I worry about the stress of running errands, my energy level when bf'ing around the clock, and then when dealing with another toddler (my parenting weakness), the impact on my kids' activities (what am I going to do with a new infant during baseball season, which can be both freezing and sweltering, when I have kids on 2 teams and others to watch after!), the already difficult task of trying to find someone to watch the kids 2 or 3 times a YEAR, and the financial impact over the course of time.

 

Bottom line, I don't worry much about a normal day around the house, which we have 4 or 5 days out of the week. It's the 2-3 other days that make me a bit nervous. But I was pretty darned freaked out over the concept of #4 joining us, and that went smoother than I ever imagined, so I have some high hopes!

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I think it's different. Harder in some ways, easier in others.

 

Harder:

Horomones!

Letting go - "Mom, can I please ride with M (17 yo!) to a karate thing on the other side of town?" Hard.

Finding things that interest everyone in the family. Family trips to the zoo just aren't as interesting for my 14 yo anymore. He still comes, but he'd prefer to be elsewhere!

"Mom! It's not fair! Everyone else is doing it!"

Have you tried getting a 10 yo to take a shower when he already had ONE this week?

They're expensive! It seems like every week, they're telling me of something new they need for baseball or karate. And, they EAT!!! Boy, do they EAT!!!!

 

Easier

My older two are mostly responsible for their own school.

Most of their personal hygiene is all them (with the occasional reminder to reapply deodorant!)

They can stay home alone!!!

They can cook!

They can clean! (But, they also make bigger messes!)

They can babysit!

I can talk to them like adults.

 

Overall, I'm enjoying this phase MUCH more than when I had littles. Yes, the problems/issues with teens are bigger and can have life-long consequences, but so far, I'm finding them VERY enjoyable! (So far!)

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As your family gets older, it will be easier in many ways. The physical demands are far less. Everyone can go to the bathroom without help, fix themselves a snack, sleep through the night, walk through the store, and even help with the cleaning. ;)

 

When children are young, their future is an open book of possibilities....and then they have to make choices.

 

The rewards of relationship with older children are priceless....and then we have to send them away to relate to others.

 

Older children can care for themselves....and then they get their driver's license, and you say a sober prayer every time they leave the house.

 

Older children are accomplishing things without your help.....and then you have to watch them hurt while you can't do anything to fix it.

 

When children are small we can live in the delusion that they are ours. They aren't, but we often think that way and actually operate in that mindset. There is a happy contented feeling that "all my little birds are in the nest", everyone is fed and clothed, and all is right with the world. When children are older it is poignantly clear that they never were ours, and we have been given the incredible privilege to help them on their journey to adulthood. However, that journey is theirs and not ours....and we have to learn to step aside.

 

Babies and toddlers aren't easier......just simpler....

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My kids aren't any older than your (just spaced a little differently). I've been thinking about the same kind of thing recently. My oldest was still 3 when my 3rd was born. Oy, that was hard. Then I had a 4-year gap between #3 and #4. Wow, what a difference it made to have kids who could pour their own cereal, get themselves dressed, and clean up their toys.

 

But now I have a toddler again. The house is a mess and my nerves are frayed. My dh just about has a heart attack every time I talk about having a 5th (I've always wanted 5). And my oldest is getting hormonal and difficult. . .

 

Ok, I have no advice, I just wanted to say that it really was nice for that year when I didn't have a toddler OR a pre-teen/teenager.

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I don't have a LOT of kids but I do have a teenager as well as two littles. The teenager is definitely harder in the mental/emotional sense. They are starting to get more independent which can be difficult but they can (theoretically) get themselves up and dressed, do their work semi-independently, even cook their own food, etc. I do a lot of driving (hours every day) for my oldest but the hardest part of that is having to drag the little ones along. My dd has actually given me very little trouble over the years - she's responsible, active, gets good grades and we have a very close relationship. But, I do worry about her going off into the world by herself - she takes her first driving lessons this week. :001_huh:

 

I find little ones exhausting. The constant questions, the total lack of independence, the having to help with every-little-detail. My son is theoretically old enough to dress himself but he will "forget" underwear if left to do it himself. Or there's a lot of "whoops, I accidently put my pants on backwards". :glare: Cute if we have the time but not so much when we are in a hurry. Don't even get me started on potty training.

 

I saw a reference somewhere (here?) about 6-11 being the "golden" years. Old enough that they have some independence but the hormonal crankiness hasn't kicked in yet. This was pretty true for my oldest but it's too soon to tell with the others (I have a feeling ds is going to keep me on my toes his whole life).

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Oh, it's all good. And all hard. And it changes from one to the other.

I think we grow as people as our kids grow. I know I'd be a different mom to my oldest two if I stayed the same and we could redo their younger years. I'm a different mom to my dd.

I agree with different challenges at different ages.

You definitly see the fruits of your parenting as they head into the teens. Don't think the little things don't count, b/c they do--but don't obsess, either.

 

I think you should have one more. :D

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Nursing, cosleeping, changing diapers, chasing a two year old down...when my oldest was nine and the rest younger, life was easier. Now we are dealing with hormones, sibling disputes, and greater variances in personalities. My oldest ones were the "easy going" ones. My middlers have the whole middle child syndrome going on. The younger ones give me a run for my money! Who knew my oldest would be my calmest and my youngest be my little whirlwind?! Then there is the whiner...I'm trying really hard to get her to understand that I can't understand mumbling or whining.

 

Yeah, enjoy the stage you are in, hon...the ride isn't over!

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Hmm...

 

Well, I think it gets easier and harder at the same time. It is not so physically exhausting as it was when I have five 8 and under. It is much richer and far deeper in conversation and day to day life together--truly a deep blessing! I love the relationship I have with all my children, but my teen children are just amazing to me. I have to say though that having such a relationship takes a lot of work/development before you land in the teen years. It is a blessing from God that we have the relationship we do because most of the time I feel like a bumbling mama.

 

We have very open communication and I have never let them remove themselves from relationship with me. I have striven to maintain a closeness even when we were not getting along and that has been tough to do at times when I have felt we didn't share much in common. I have had to go out of my own comfort zone at different times to maintain it.

 

I am FAR from a perfect parent, but I think having older children is the richest reward of parenting. It is ten times better than a new baby in my mind and worth every bit of work it takes to get there. God has, over and over, given my dh and I different avenues of being who He wants us to be to our children. We sin over and over, but His grace is what keeps us going on the path He has set before us.

 

He gets the praise for our family life. :001_smile:

 

Thank you for sharing your perspective. It is so encouraging!

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I was just looking at someone's sig who has a few more dc than me. We've got some whose ages match up, & the rest of hers are either older than my corresponding kid or older than all of mine.

 

She mentioned it being hard, her being busy, but I saw the ages, & all I could see were kids who could bathe themselves, wipe their bottoms, read to themselves, & help w/ littles. I realize there's more school work to go w/ bigger kids, but I'm good at that part of parenting. AND I like it, lol.

 

All that's to say--it dawned on me--it only gets easier from here. IF we have more children, nothing will be as hard as the years we've just finished.

 

Then the flash of insight faded & I realized I probably only thought that because I haven't dealt w/ teenagers. I actually probably could be more tired than I am. :lol:

 

So look at my kids' ages: 2, 3, 7, 9--if we don't have any more (& we're not planning to), I don't care what you say. I choose to believe it gets easier. :smilielol5: (It already is--words are *so* nice.)

 

But what about having more? Is it true that after 4, a couple more is no big deal? (It's midnight & I'm randomly wondering, don't read any plans into this.)

 

Looking back I would say that I had NO idea what life with teens would be like back when my boys were young. Potty training vs. driver's training; boo-boo's vs. heartbreak; phonics or whole-word vs. SAT 2s or Concurrent; etc. It's different, it's good, God gives the grace to see us through each of these phases. I'm more exhausted now, physically and emotionally. I'd love to be able to put the boys down for a nap every afternoon again ;). And even though they can dress themselves, wipe themselves, etc. it isn't always done to my expectations :D

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So look at my kids' ages: 2, 3, 7, 9--if we don't have any more (& we're not planning to), I don't care what you say. I choose to believe it gets easier. :smilielol5: (It already is--words are *so* nice.)

 

 

 

Igorance is bliss. :D

I'd love the workload of those ages again.

 

Dc are now 18, 16, 14, ,12.

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I have actually found it harder, as they get older. When dealing with the basic needs I was tired, but content and peaceful. Now I have kids that can decide to run out in pasture and chase cows...or get kicked by horse...or climb on the roof of the house...or decided not to come home from the kids house on the next cul de sac ( with their siblings when they know the rule is STICK TOGETHER!!!)...and I haven't even reached the teen years :glare:.

 

It's not the physical aspect...it's the constant emotional and psychological issues

 

I didn't not realize that there was no way to compare fighting a diaper rash...to wondering if you have instilled enough healthy copeing skills in your dc.

 

Not to mention the academics of homeschooling!

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It does get easier in so many ways. They are much more independent. But, I've never experienced the worry and concern when they are young that I experience now with my 20 year old. :tongue_smilie:

 

IF we have more children, nothing will be as hard as the years we've just finished.

 

Then the flash of insight faded & I realized I probably only thought that because I haven't dealt w/ teenagers. I actually probably could be more tired than I am. :lol:

 

 

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I remember talking to a mom of a teenager when my youngest was a baby. She commented on how tired she was, didn't sleep at all etc... I piped in, neither did I baby was up all night with tooth pains. She looked at me and said, that child was in your arms, my child was out until 2:00 am with friends... I got it. With young kids you are more in control, and with the older ones it is letting go.

 

Personally, the thing I find the hardest is that the my oldest stays up so late and that is his best time of the day. So we often do school etc.. at his best time, not my best time. I hate working with him at 9:00 or 10:00, but I love spending time with him. As my grandmother - in -law would say, "this too shall pass"... teething babies passed by quick enough, teenage odd hours will pass too.

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I was just looking at someone's sig who has a few more dc than me. We've got some whose ages match up, & the rest of hers are either older than my corresponding kid or older than all of mine.

 

She mentioned it being hard, her being busy, but I saw the ages, & all I could see were kids who could bathe themselves, wipe their bottoms, read to themselves, & help w/ littles. I realize there's more school work to go w/ bigger kids, but I'm good at that part of parenting. AND I like it, lol.

 

All that's to say--it dawned on me--it only gets easier from here. IF we have more children, nothing will be as hard as the years we've just finished.

 

Then the flash of insight faded & I realized I probably only thought that because I haven't dealt w/ teenagers. I actually probably could be more tired than I am. :lol:

 

So look at my kids' ages: 2, 3, 7, 9--if we don't have any more (& we're not planning to), I don't care what you say. I choose to believe it gets easier. :smilielol5: (It already is--words are *so* nice.)

 

But what about having more? Is it true that after 4, a couple more is no big deal? (It's midnight & I'm randomly wondering, don't read any plans into this.)

 

 

physically it gets easier. But life gets WAY more complicated. I don't know about more than 4 because that's where I stopped. I think though it probably depends on the dynamics of the family.

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The heartaches can be heavier when kids are older.

 

Exactly. Just between you and me and the whole internet, I'm heartbroken right now because one of mine is grown up and moving away. It's harder than I ever imagined it could be. And the next four are right behind him.

 

On the other hand, with four teens in the house, two of them girls, my house is almost always clean. Dusted, vacuumed. Laundry done and put away. Kitchen clean.

 

I'd take a messy house and all my babies home in a heartbeat.

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As far as the care and keeping of children go, we always joke that after you have three you don't notice one more. Of course rules change with a newborn, but after they hit a certain age it is easier to me.

It's the homeschooling that I am having trouble with. They can feed themselves, dress themselves, entertain themselves, but they can't teach themselves...yet... :tongue_smilie:

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I'm going to read more of the responses but I will say that without a doubt adding #5 was the easiest addition. Maybe it is because I am more laid back, or becaause he just happens to be the most relaxed and happy baby ever, or because having so many loving older sibs MAKES a boy happy, or because I no longer think I need to do anything else but raise these babies and help them become good, happy pople. But it is true. My hardest days are when only some of the kids are out of my clutches. It's always fun to change the dynamic and see who hangs with whom on those days, but things are also out of kilter.

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Hmm...

 

Well, I think it gets easier and harder at the same time. It is not so physically exhausting as it was when I have five 8 and under. It is much richer and far deeper in conversation and day to day life together--truly a deep blessing! I love the relationship I have with all my children, but my teen children are just amazing to me. I have to say though that having such a relationship takes a lot of work/development before you land in the teen years. It is a blessing from God that we have the relationship we do because most of the time I feel like a bumbling mama.

 

We have very open communication and I have never let them remove themselves from relationship with me. I have striven to maintain a closeness even when we were not getting along and that has been tough to do at times when I have felt we didn't share much in common. I have had to go out of my own comfort zone at different times to maintain it.

 

I am FAR from a perfect parent, but I think having older children is the richest reward of parenting. It is ten times better than a new baby in my mind and worth every bit of work it takes to get there. God has, over and over, given my dh and I different avenues of being who He wants us to be to our children. We sin over and over, but His grace is what keeps us going on the path He has set before us.

 

He gets the praise for our family life. :001_smile:

:iagree:(though there is no guarantee about the outcome of any child- they grow up and make their own choices, regardless of what we do or don't do!) Having said that, I LOVE having teens and adult kids. It is less physically exhausting, like with younger kids, and more emotional energy. Spent 1 hour on the phone with my 23 yo last night at 12:30 a.m.- she was exhausted, wornout, tired and angry and just needed someone to listen and say they loved her, that she is gorgous and can get done what needs done. Geez, I'm beat this morning;)

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I'm going to add that I think it depends on what kind of personality a parent has as to how this affects them.

 

I am an introvert. There was a thread a while back about "would you leave the house if you didn't have to" thing.....and I said I'd never leave if I didn't have to. I LOVE being at home. That is just "me".

 

When the kids are little, you are at home and your world revolves around your family and your house. There are a few little outside influences, like church or the possibility of an outside lesson or activity, but *you make the choice in all things. You can just stay at home and let the kids have a grand old time if that is what suits you, or you can choose to run all over the place and get involved in everything under the sun. It's your choice and decision to make. Obviously, if you are a home-body you'll choose home. If you are an extrovert you'll make sure your kids are out and about all.the.time.

 

However, when the kids are older, your home is no longer their universe. You don't do the choosing; they do. And forget the fact that they may make bad choices (they will). You deal with the heartache of that as well.

 

Now that they have outside interests and you are running, running, running....etc. The changing of diapers and wiping little bottoms is replaced by a huge calender with times and places written all over it for each child, and all the things you have to remember to take and do and....and.....you are never at home. Never. But still, school has to be done and you are responsible for making tons of schedules to fit all the academics between the outside activities. And there has to be a good balance of all the things they will need to look good and acceptable to perspective colleges and they will need good test scores for good scholarships and it is All.Up.To.YOU.....and all you want to do is stay at home like a good little introvert!!!!

 

Believe me, your sleepless nights are not over. I was more physically tired trying to get my teens to and from activities than I ever was cleaning up their messes at home. We couldn't afford to pay car insurance for drivers below age 18, so our kids didn't get their licenses until they could afford to pay their own insurance.

 

I loved it all....having my kids at home as littles, and watching/helpling them grow into adults. But, if I had my choice to repeat any of it, I'd have them all at home as littles again. It's absolutely the easiest and best of times for an introvert like me.

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in ways it's easier, in ways it's harder. Yes, they can take care of themselves, but you also have more food to cook, more laundry, more shopping, and they can't do all of that and it's unfair to put the burden on the older ones-they have chores AND schoolwork to get done, and their own projects. They're not my slaves, you know?

 

Then, they all want and need to go places. We have boy scouts, friends houses and they're different people and have different friends.

 

Though having babies is emotionally easier and physically harder, having teens is more emotional work. That said, my teens are awesome, even at their worst. I've been waiting a long time for these years (yes, I love my babies, but I always 'got' older kids better). In a few years I'll have four teens at home. I'm just trying to get my liver up to speed for all that wine I'll be drinking. :D

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I'm going to add that I think it depends on what kind of personality a parent has as to how this affects them.

 

I am an introvert. There was a thread a while back about "would you leave the house if you didn't have to" thing.....and I said I'd never leave if I didn't have to. I LOVE being at home. That is just "me".

 

When the kids are little, you are at home and your world revolves around your family and your house. There are a few little outside influences, like church or the possibility of an outside lesson or activity, but *you make the choice in all things. You can just stay at home and let the kids have a grand old time if that is what suits you, or you can choose to run all over the place and get involved in everything under the sun. It's your choice and decision to make. Obviously, if you are a home-body you'll choose home. If you are an extrovert you'll make sure your kids are out and about all.the.time.

 

However, when the kids are older, your home is no longer their universe. You don't do the choosing; they do. And forget the fact that they may make bad choices (they will). You deal with the heartache of that as well.

 

Now that they have outside interests and you are running, running, running....etc. The changing of diapers and wiping little bottoms is replaced by a huge calender with times and places written all over it for each child, and all the things you have to remember to take and do and....and.....you are never at home. Never. But still, school has to be done and you are responsible for making tons of schedules to fit all the academics between the outside activities. And there has to be a good balance of all the things they will need to look good and acceptable to perspective colleges and they will need good test scores for good scholarships and it is All.Up.To.YOU.....and all you want to do is stay at home like a good little introvert!!!!

 

Believe me, your sleepless nights are not over. I was more physically tired trying to get my teens to and from activities than I ever was cleaning up their messes at home. We couldn't afford to pay car insurance for drivers below age 18, so our kids didn't get their licenses until they could afford to pay their own insurance.

 

I loved it all....having my kids at home as littles, and watching/helpling them grow into adults. But, if I had my choice to repeat any of it, I'd have them all at home as littles again. It's absolutely the easiest and best of times for an introvert like me.

 

Interesting! I'm an introvert too, and my kids are little and I'm finding it SO HARD sometimes. Yeah, we can stay home...but I am never alone, and rarely get the chance to even think my own thoughts. Somebody is ALWAYS talking to me, climbing on me, needing to be picked up, making noise, making a mess...it can be exhausting. I'd rather leave the house more often and be able to squeeze in a few minutes of quiet somewhere.

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So look at my kids' ages: 2, 3, 7, 9--if we don't have any more (& we're not planning to), I don't care what you say. I choose to believe it gets easier.

 

Um, yeah, sure, Aubrey! When they're 10, 11, 15, and 17, it will be easier, hmmm mmm ;).

 

But what about having more? Is it true that after 4, a couple more is no big deal

 

I find that most people who think this is true either don't have a couple more, or the older kids are doing quite a bit of child care. Babies and toddlers are a lot of work; that work doesn't go away simply because they are numbers 6-8 rather than 2-4. The work may get redistributed, but it doesn't go away. Each family has to decide how much child care they are comfortable having the older children assume. I personally think that, if a parent truly doesn't notice the addition of a couple of extra human beings, the older kids are probably doing too much! :D

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Interesting! I'm an introvert too, and my kids are little and I'm finding it SO HARD sometimes. Yeah, we can stay home...but I am never alone, and rarely get the chance to even think my own thoughts. Somebody is ALWAYS talking to me, climbing on me, needing to be picked up, making noise, making a mess...it can be exhausting. I'd rather leave the house more often and be able to squeeze in a few minutes of quiet somewhere.

:iagree:

My oldest is very active - dances 5-6 days a week, plus cheerleading, plus school, plus college visits, plus friends that live in a town 30 miles away. But, when she's in dance I can sit outside in the quiet car or go to Panera and read with a nice cup of tea and a snack.

 

In contrast, when I'm at home with the younger kids, there is never more than 5 minutes without a demand for a snack or a drink, or a fight, or a crash to be investigated, or..... and that's in addition to the need to be right there for school time and meals.

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The heartaches can be heavier when kids are older.

That's what I'm thinking. Mine are 5,7,and 9 now and getting more independent by the day. SO physically on me it's not as difficult but the other issues are getting more difficult to deal with, issues as they mature and interact more with the outside world.

I believe "LIttle kids, little problems but big kids , bigger problems."

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said gently but honestly: You have NO idea. I used to hear "Small kids, small problems. Bigger kids, bigger problems," and it would annoy the heck out of me. It's true.

 

I do think a LOT can be escaped by keeping your kids out of school. My boys went into ps 4 years ago, and things changed.

 

Oldest is in college and a relationship. I worry about him more than dd10. Ds15 worries me for different reasons.

 

Dd7 is hard, hard, hard, but as a teen, I don't know if I will survive. I'm not just saying that.

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in ways it's easier, in ways it's harder. Yes, they can take care of themselves, but you also have more food to cook, more laundry, more shopping, and they can't do all of that and it's unfair to put the burden on the older ones-they have chores AND schoolwork to get done, and their own projects. They're not my slaves, you know?

 

Then, they all want and need to go places. We have boy scouts, friends houses and they're different people and have different friends.

 

Though having babies is emotionally easier and physically harder, having teens is more emotional work. That said, my teens are awesome, even at their worst. I've been waiting a long time for these years (yes, I love my babies, but I always 'got' older kids better). In a few years I'll have four teens at home. I'm just trying to get my liver up to speed for all that wine I'll be drinking. :D

 

This. And so much of my emotional stress comes from my family. Surely (pray w/ me)--my kids won't dish out more than my family has! :001_huh: Kind-of laughing. :tongue_smilie:

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I find that most people who think this is true either don't have a couple more, or the older kids are doing quite a bit of child care. Babies and toddlers are a lot of work; that work doesn't go away simply because they are numbers 6-8 rather than 2-4. The work may get redistributed, but it doesn't go away. Each family has to decide how much child care they are comfortable having the older children assume. I personally think that, if a parent truly doesn't notice the addition of a couple of extra human beings, the older kids are probably doing too much! :D

 

Well...#2 did have me in tears for a couple of months because I was changing so. many. diapers. (Ds wasn't quite potty trained.) Other than that, I came away thinking, gee, if I'd known that having 2 would be this easy, I'd have done it much sooner. Ds was 2. He really wasn't helping, lol.

 

When #3 & 4 came w/in a yr of ea other, that was a lot of diapers, but I had the whole 9mos to prepare for the fact, & dh had been parenting long enough to be happier about changing some, too. Still, we went from 2 to 4. That was HARD.

 

But the big two are at an age where they can change a diaper or two now & then. They can do some schoolwork w/out me holding their hands. 3yo can sort-of dress herself. (Sometimes she even matches!) 2yo's potty-training himself.

 

I don't know. Like I said, I'm not planning on it, & at this point, I really don't think we ever will, but I have a feeling that if we were surprised w/ another one, I'd be surprised how easy it would be. Most of the last couple of yrs, if I'd found out we were expecting another one, I'm pretty sure I'd have had a heart attack & died right there. :lol:

 

After #2, we had trouble getting pg. There came a time when we talked about being done vs adopting vs artificial help. I realized that although I'd always wanted 4, I was incredibly content w/ 2. Life would look different, but I could be happy, maybe. Then we finally had #3, & as soon as she was born, I knew I *had* to have a 4th. (I didn't mean 14mos later, lol!)

 

Anyway, I'm *thrilled* w/ the # of kids we have. I think I'd be happiest at this #, even. But if a 5th kid folds in as easily as I've heard *some* moms say they do AND we had a surprise baby, I think I might suddenly be in for a very large family. Kwim? (Probably not. It's not 12AM any more, so I don't know what's wrong w/ me. I've been staying up till 2AM every night reading about history currics again, so we'll chalk this thread up to sleep-deprived insanity.)

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Exactly. Just between you and me and the whole internet, I'm heartbroken right now because one of mine is grown up and moving away. It's harder than I ever imagined it could be. And the next four are right behind him.

 

On the other hand, with four teens in the house, two of them girls, my house is almost always clean. Dusted, vacuumed. Laundry done and put away. Kitchen clean.

 

I'd take a messy house and all my babies home in a heartbeat.

 

So what I hear you saying is you wish you'd had more? :leaving:

 

:lol:

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And I was going to say life was so much easier when kissing boo boos and offering num nums could make it all better.

 

Wait a minute, lol. I just left the library w/ a 3yo complaining that she couldn't carry the 40lbs of books my 9yo was complaining he had to carry & running away from big sis trying to hold her hand across the parking lot. That was the easy part.

 

2yo was SCREAMING & LAUGHING & RUNNING AWAY & ANNOUNCING "There's poopoos in my diaper," which is only sometimes true but always embarrassing. As he wriggles & slips away one way, 3yo runs up, grabs my arm, & starts hanging upside down from me on the other side.

 

I offer food, & they don't want it. They complain about naps & they complain about not getting naps. They cry on their way to bed & scream when they get up. (3yo cried the other day when I suggested a "little nap." Why? She's a *big* girl & wants a *big* nap!)

 

Don't get me wrong. They're incredibly cute. 5% of the time, lol. The rest of the time, they lay on the ground & scream, & when you ask why, you get, "iuknow." Ok, then. Could ya stop crying? NO! :lol:

 

Kisses? Sometimes they make things better. Other times, they get, "NO KISSES! NO KISSES!" :001_huh:

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