When our 4th child was born our lives changed in many ways, and in many ways it stayed the same.
Now that our youngest is 18 months old, it’s very obvious to me what life will be like for the next 18+ years. If you’re on the fence about having a 4th child, or you’re a newlywed chatting about your future children, this blog post is for you!
What it’s really like to have 4 children, the pros and cons.
Let’s start with the cons:
- There is always an unhappy child. It’s almost inevitable at any given moment of the day, someone will be unhappy. Whether it’s one of the older kids fighting over something or the baby needing attention.
- There is always chaos. You’ve heard the term “controlled chaos”. Well, with 4 kids there is none of that. There is little control and mostly pure chaos all the time.
- There is always loud noise. THEY. ARE. SO. LOUD.
- Your house will never be clean again. I try. I try really, really hard to maintain a clean home but it’s so hard with 4 kids. Especially with a baby who still doesn’t quite understand that not everything that’s handed to him needs to be thrown on the floor. We make the kids clean up a lot. Way more than I remember my parents making me, I hope they don’t look back and are scared for how much I make them clean. Beyond their daily chores, we do “flash cleans” and “reset the rooms”, this helps with the mess… but it’s always there.
- The laundry never, ever ends. Ever. Doing laundry every single day drove me mad, so I stopped doing it everyday and made Wednesday and Sunday “laundry days”. It’s made my life a lot easier pushing all the laundry and linens off to one day a week. A day my husband and kids can help fold and put things away.
- Traveling is more expensive. No longer can you squeeze into one hotel room, unless it’s a very large room.
- Speaking of needing more space, you’re going to need a large car with a trunk for the strollers. I secretly despise my minivan, but it’s a necessity!
Alright… enough of the downers, let’s get to the pros!
- Going from 3 to 4 was really no big deal. The transition from 3-4 was our easiest. You’re already outnumbered and used to the chaos, so really, what’s one more?!
- There is always someone to play with! With an even number of kids, they can break off in 2’s to play and still have so much fun. With 3 kids, there was always one that was left out. When you add a 4th, it really balances everything off nicely.
- They are built-in best friends. On that same note, when we go places… like a playground, they don’t have to make friends. They usually do, but they are also okay going anywhere alone because they have each other to use their imaginations with.
- Speaking of, they never ask me to play with them. hahahaha. c’mon moms, admit it…playing with your kids sometimes sucks. It is very, very rare that one of my kids will ask me to play with them because they have each other and when they are alone, they kind of enjoy the peace and quite. Can I get an amen?!
- Our future will look much different. Yes, college will be expensive. Yes, first cars will be expensive. Yes, sports are expensive now! But with 4 kids, I have faith that at least one of them will live near us when they grow up and move away. And if not, I really hope they all choose amazing places Jeff and I can visit! Goodbye, Ohio!!!
- They adjust really easy. Because there are so many kids in our house, they share rooms and a lot of times they share beds. When we travel, they have no problems sleeping anywhere at anytime.
- They aren’t on any kind of routine. Sure, I have some routines like a bedtime and breakfast… but beyond that, they’re kind of on their own. The baby naps on the way to golf or ballet or in the stroller at the zoo. We don’t plan our entire day around a nap time, otherwise we’d be prisoners of our home. They just go with the flow and aren’t attached to any kind of routine, it’s kind of freeing.
- Safety in numbers. All of our kids are shy by nature. But by having each other they gain confidence in talking with adults and trying out new things.
- SO MUCH LOVE. Need I say more?!?! With every pregnancy you don’t understand how your heart could possibly grow any larger, yet it does…. every. single. time.
I hope this list was helpful. Even the “cons” aren’t horrible. I wouldn’t change my 4 for anything in the entire world. In fact, Jeff would love one more! I still need a lot of convincing for that. hahahahah.