How many children should I have?
People always told me that I'd know when we'd finished having kids. I didn't. I loved babies and I couldn't see any good reasons to not have more children other than our ability to cope. So here we are - 5 kids later!
Why have we not had more? I got tired, I got old, I didn't want a bigger gap between our oldest and youngest, we couldn't see how we could fit another bed into our house, the first year of my youngest child's life was quite dark and scary for me and I was happy to not return to feeling like that again.
But I have been thinking a bit about what to think through when deciding whether or not you should grow your family.
- What's your personality like? I realised that I'm a bit of an introvert so having lots of kids at home all the time, has meant that I don't have lots of emotional energy left for the rest of the world. That can be hard sometimes.
- Are you content spending a lot of time at home with your children - and are you happy doing lots of housework and cooking? You will need to do more of that than friends with less children.
- Financially? Not an issue for me that ever concerned me so I'm probably not a person to comment on that issue, but it might be for you, so you need to think through that carefully.
- Physically is it wise for you to go through another pregnancy? Will having a difficult pregnancy have a long-term impact on your ability to care for your family?
- How do you feel about having a child with special needs? Does that feel too difficult on top of where your other kids are at now. I do think that God provides the strength we need to get through, but that doesn't make it easy or take the reality of the hardness away.
- Do you have plans to work as a missionary? Lots of children has certainly meant that we can't pursue that option and it has limited how much formal ministry I can do.
However, none of this is prescriptive. Just my random thoughts.