This mother explains why it's fine to have just one child
"I was asked about a second child before the first one had even exited my body"
“You can’t be ‘one and done’.” (Oh yeah? Why not?)
“Because it’s not fair.” (Fair on who? Your tired ass casting judgement on me because your life choices are exhausting you?)
“Because she won’t have older siblings to learn from/for guidance.” (That’s what everyone else in her life is for, too, ya know. She has cousins, parents, grandparents and a whole gang of friends. Social skills are the least of my worries, it’s feeding everyone who loves her and wants to hang out that stresses me.)
“Because she will be spoilt.” (Last I heard, you can’t spoil kids with love.)
“Because it’ll be up to her to look after you when you’re old/sort your affairs when you die.” (You sure are fun at parties, aren’t ya?!)
I was asked about a second child before the first one had even exited my body … there’s nothing that brings on a bout of the baby blues faster than someone making you feel as though the one you have been through so much to get – isn’t enough.
We’ve thought about it. We’ve spoken about it. And it turns out … one is enough.
I’ve had one, and I’m done.
I’m not sad she’s my first and last, I’m not broody when I see babies, I don’t yearn for a boy, or twins, or feel like our family isn’t ‘complete’ just because we don’t get ‘family tickets’ for days out, or see ourselves represented as often as a family of four does.
But the most bizarre phenomenon in regard to being ‘one and done’ is that EVERYONE wants to know why.
They are also no one’s actual f**kin’ business.
Every woman has her own reasons, each as valid and as complex as my own.
From previous miscarriage, to secondary infertility. To baby loss, premature births, relationship breakdowns, finances, previous birth trauma, sexual trauma, hyperemesis gravidarum, mental health, lifestyle changes and my favourite and reason I return to the most …
Because I can’t be f**king arsed to do it all over again.
Sleepless nights? Completed it, mate.
Cracked nipples? Done ’em.
Endless nappies? F**ked the planet with ’em.
Colicky babies? Never again!
And yes, there was also:
- nights spent co-sleeping
- wonderful bonding time feeding my baby
- feelings of accomplishment that I nourished her solely
- joy of picking out cute outfits, and finally;
- two years of cuddling a baby that wanted only us.
But I’ve done it. It’s done.
I could never agree that it ‘was worth it’ because it left me feeling so wrung out, so often.
And I hear this a lot, too: “Oh, one kid is SO easy, you have no idea” and you know what – it never makes me feel inept (as is intended).
It makes me think, “I was right to trust my reasons.” (And then I go for a nap in the day and it’s like, oh f**k yeah!)
So listen, I will never, EVER judge you for having one kid, two, three, four or more. It’s your life, you all make beautiful babies, you all make wonderful mothers …
So stop judging me for how many kids I don’t have in mine.
You have no idea why I have stopped at one. It may be something deeply upsetting, it may not.
And I am not obliged to explain myself.
This article was first published on KidSpot and was republished here with permission.