September 27, 2011

Minding the Gap

Lately I've been wondering if there is really an ideal age gap for siblings.
Jude is perfecting the stoic, Civil War baby photo face (you know how in those old photos everyone is always so grim looking)
The "threes" around here have been pretty terrible of late, and I can't help but think maybe adding a baby to the mix at this age wasn't the best of thoughts.
Who am I kidding, I can't imagine not seeing this sweet, smiling face every day!

Back to topic: things here have been difficult with Soren, mostly typical preschooler stuff like not listening, screaming, hitting Chris and I, and inappropriately shoving his face into our butts when we're standing up and walking.  Not exactly the kind of butt kissing his dad and I would hope to have from our child, but we deal with it.
At least he's not kissing butts here.
I wonder if there really is a good age to space children.  Too close and you're up to your arms in poopy diapers, endless feeding, eye poking and biting.  Too far apart and you get jealousy issues (or maybe a super-helpful big brother/sister) or the attention-seeking behaviors that we're dealing with.  My mom says that she doesn't recall any issues with me and the oldest of my 4 brothers, and we are 17 months apart.  Then again, she says I was a pretty helpful, agreeable child.

My friend Shana doesn't seem to have too many problems with her kids, who are a little under 2 years apart.  Some face poking and one story about her daughter "coaching" her non-walking baby brother down the steps.  {Shana, leave me a comment to tell me how wrong (or right) I am about your kids.}
I have hope that as Jude gets older, that the two boys will "grow" into their age gap and that each of them will find the good qualities of their ages in relation to each other.  I like to imagine Soren as a didactic older brother, finding ways to teach Jude and enthusiastically share his interests.  And I hope that Jude will make Soren nostalgic for experiences from his childhood and make him eager to relive things with his brother.  We'll see...

7 comments:

  1. Lili's actually graduated to tossing furniture at her baby brother, K -- kid-sized furniture, but furniture nonetheless. I pretty much need to watch them all the time, or she's inflicting some damage. We've been joking that preschool is five hours out of the week that Lloyd is safe! So, maybe I don't express it enough, but I did tell your husband over the weekend that raising kids is really just living Lord of the Flies...they're nothing but little feral, deadly animals.

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  2. Oh, I mean little feral, deadly animals that we love and adore.

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  3. I worry about the if/when #2 happens... I've just enjoyed the solo time with Charlie so much. It's hard to imagine what it would be like with that age gap too.

    I'm sure they'll grow into their gap just fine :) Such a beautiful family!

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  4. I have two boys who are 13 months apart. They did pretty well together when they were younger, but their personalities are so different now that they don't much get along. I actually started crying the other day when my oldest son told the youngest that he cares about him. After hearing them argue all the time, it meant a lot that he said that. There's no set age gap that's better or worse than the other. There will be good days and there will be bad days.
    Love the first pic of your boys together.

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  5. I once read that the ideal age gap was 7 years. That would limit most of us to 2 children unless we started having babies when we are 12. I understand the theory - you give the child all the attention they need up until they are firmly in school and then you have the time to do the same for the next child.
    I clearly didn't listen. I waited 15 years between kid 1 and kid 2 and then just to stay consistent kid 2 and kid 3 are 15 months apart. Months... years... I get confused easily. :) I blame the kids... their names escape me at the moment but one of them smells and I probably should do something about it now... :)

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  6. All I can say is more power to you Kathleen! It sounds like you've got quite the handful, but like you say, hopefully it will smooth out as both boys get older :)

    In the mean time, hang in there!

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  7. Hahaha. Soren & Kidoodle are two of a kind, although we haven't had funny head-butting. ;) Kidoodle seeks some positive attention, like wanting to be "worn" in the sling or Pikkolo and asking me to nurse him, too. (No way, buddo. You never learned how to do it, and those gleaming teeth are terrifying.)

    My hubby is 2 yrs 8 mos older than his little brother (just about spot on for my 2 boys, too) and they had gads of fun playing as boys. They still do! ;) My sister and I were only 14 mos apart, and we loved playing together when we were little.

    I've heard that allowing a 2+yr gap allows for higher IQs in the younger siblings. We laugh about that, cuz we know some genius people with siblings less than 2 years older than them. ;)

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I'm a good listener...comment away!

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