The Sibling Age Gap War : Part 1 - xoxo Rebecca

The Sibling Age Gap War : Part 1

I know you have all heard it. Those comments, remarks, snares.... it kind of sucks and sometimes. And let's be honest, we all want to say to most of them, "it's none of your business!" Am I right? What am I talking about? 

The comments moms get about how close {or even} how far apart in age our children are {or AKA: The Sibling Age Gap war}. I know this subject comes up a lot. And there are some people who are very sensitive when someone makes a remark and others who say to get over your feelings and toughen up about what others say to your face about the subject. I've been seeing this topic come up a lot on Facebook and in different baby site articles. So I figured I would put in my experience with it all. I have already read three different posts about this on my Facebook feed just today. 

So raise your hand if you have ever been out in a store, walking down the street, or just having a day out at the park, and you have been the victim of this question?

"So, how far apart are they?"

As a mother of three, but two of my children are 13 months and 30 days apart, I get this one a lot. And I mean.... a lot! But I will come back to this one in a future post.

Before I had my third child, my oldest daughter was six years old when my son was born. I used to hear remarks all the time from people about the age gap. I would hear that they are too far apart. I should have been more like them and kept my children's age gap a little bit closer. It would be better for them. They would have each other to play with and they would never feel alone. They would be best friends and things are just better when children are closer in age to "just get it out of the way". I had heard that more times than I can count. "Just to get it out of the way and be done".......

But I always responded, that my brother and I were 14 months apart and it wasn't always so great. So I don't mind my children being a bit farther apart. I see it this way.... my oldest can be a big helper for me with the baby. And boy was still is.

I didn't see what the big deal was. Why people were so worried that my daughter and son had six years between them. I don't see that as a big age gap. Now some people I know have siblings who are 10+ years between them. One of my friends in high school was a prime example. We were both 17 and her oldest brother was in his 30's. And why should it matter if a family has children far apart in age? What difference does it make to the commenter?

I admit that once I became a mom the first time, I didn't want to have any more children. One child was more than enough to handle for me at the time. So I had no thought about adding in another anytime soon. But once my daughter turned three, my mind started to change. I felt more comfortable being a parent and finally felt I was getting the hang of it all. I had just spent a year as a single mom while my husband was away for work halfway across the country. We didn't get to see him except four times throughout that year he was gone. By the time he returned, I felt like I wanted another baby. But it didn't seem to come that easy. It took three more years until our son was finally born. 

So if I had to have it go the way I felt, I would have been pregnant when my daughter turned three. But life doesn't always go as we want it to. So when she turned six, we welcomed our son. And of course, with that welcome, I also got a lot of comments on how they were just too far apart. And to me, that is where the sensitivity comes into play. For people being told that they should have calculated it better to have their children closer in age...well, sometimes we can't play God and things either happen or they don't. So to me, the comments about how children should be closer in age can be cruel ones and really kept to themselves.

Why do people see that they need to put you down and say stupid things about your children being a few years or more apart? I don't know about you guys, but it really bothered me at the time when I just had my daughter and son. I hated people telling me advice because my son would make my daughter's life a living hell as she entered the teenage years and he would be the "terror little brother" always in the way and getting on her nerves. I had someone ask me even why I would do that to her and torture her life with a little brother who was six years younger. Why didn't I keep them closer in age?

It just really ticks me off when people give that "oh-so-unwanted advice". Please tell me I am not the only one that it bothers around here. It shouldn't bother me. I should be able to just brush it off and say, "whatever" and walk away. But it does bother me. So tell me, have you ever heard the unwanted comments of having your children too far apart for some people's liking? I feel like I am at war with defending myself and my children's ages sometimes.

I'll be adding my thoughts and experience on other people's comments to children who are very close in age in a future post. So stay tuned for that one.