My mother tells a sweet story: One day she was holding my darling baby day she was holding my brother and kissing him. When she noticed that I was gazing intently she asked, "Are you jealous?" "Yes," I responded, "I want to kiss him too." My brother and I were best of friends and are still very close with each other and our families."But they always said that close together makes for friends." Yes whoever the mythical "they" are did say that. Are "they" right? I notice that sibling rivalry is more common with close spacing, yet, once in a while, the relationship can be magical. Still, most parents who call me for help with jealousy and aggression among siblings are those with closely spaced children.Some of you may read this column and say, "This isn't true; my sister and I had a great time and I want to give such a friendship to my children." And some parents report wonderful friendships between their own closely spaced children. Although it is possible that closely spaced children will enjoy each other, their memories are from older ages. When you ask their parents what it was like in the early years, the story will be different. While the child may recall good days of play, the parents recall anxiety and hard times.
Ask ried by preteens and teenagers, their needs were met by a number of adults and youth and they even sipped milk Naomi from the breasts of other women in the family. The focus of these children was not only mom and, therefore, the arrival Parenting of another baby was not necessarily a Without huge loss to them. Struggle The nuclear family has brought the natural multi caregivers to an end. Your two-year-old is a baby whose human Naomi Aldort by Naomi Aldort world is mostly you and your partner. Having another baby is a loss of almost her whole world and a premature loss at that. She is still dependent on you for a Spacing Children’s Births few years. Such a young child has no nat- ural ability to sacrifice her needs for an- Q: My child is 15 months old and I am baby. Depending on the child, this may other. She needs to be breastfed, held, thinking of getting pregnant again. I be true at age six or not until a couple of slept with and fully cared for. She has no hear of giving birth close together so the years later. reason to give up any part of her primary children can be friends. I also hear that it Spacing close together, however, has connection with you. is initially very difficult. I’d like to space its benefits and joys to consider. There Having two fully needy babies is un- my children for ease and peace for all. are no mistakes and no one right away. likely to bring you peace and ease. Moth- Can you shed light on this dilemma? Although a young child may not be in- ers of closely spaced wee ones find clined to give up her needs, if reality dic- themselves often unable to meet basic A: All spacing possibilities are filled tates and with supportive parents, she needs, angry with the older child and not with wonder and there is no one right an- will draw from it the lessons that will enjoying themselves. They are also wor- swer. What I will try to do in this column shape and strengthen her. Depending on is shed light on the nature of raising chil- the children, on the parents and on how dren close together or far apart, so you many children you raise, all possibilities can make a choice with these specifics in are right. mind. Most parents have children be- Answering tween one to four years apart, so I will Spacing for ease and peace all your start with the nature of seven years apart, Your particular question is about which is less common, yet much easier. planning for a second child with the idea
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