Thursday, November 7, 2013

How Many Is Too Many?

One of my brothers once said something to me along the lines of "...having more than two children is dumb. It you have more than two, you can't give sufficient love to all of them."

He had two. I had four. Yeah, he's not my favorite brother.

It is an interesting question. Is there a number that signifies someone has too many children? I can only speak from my own personal experiences and observations. For example, when I was homeschooling Birdie and DoodleBug in middle school, we met a family with 10 children. TEN. Holy crap. I never could figure out how that mom did it. She was amazing and so was her hubs who was so supportive and involved. The children were lovely--well behaved, happy, smart, active, etc. It was always a pleasure to interact with this family. None of the children seemed to be lacking in time or love from either parent. They were thriving children. No one was starved in the area of love or food or attention...

But then I look at someone like the Octomom and I shudder. Thankfully, I don't believe her to be the norm. I do wonder as to her sanity. But she's not the norm. And, if she was, I would deny it. Vehemently.

I also know families with 5 and 6 children and I find them to be the same as the family I mentioned with 10 children. I just have not, personally, known parents who cannot or do not give their kids plenty of love and attention or provide for them financially just because they have more than one or two children.

I HAVE, on the other hand, known and observed parents who have only one or two children and give them very little attention. These are parents who are self-absorbed either with each other or with themselves and their friends and their own activities. It's sad, but true. It happens. I just have yet to witness it based solely on the number of children one has.

I also know a local woman who takes in foster children and, usually, ends up adopting them. She has made such a difference in the lives of these children. Children who others might not have been so quick to love. This woman is making a difference in multiple lives and has been for as long as I've known her which is going on 20 years. No matter how many children she has in her house at one time (I've never known there to be more than 4 at a time) I've seen them and been around them. They are happy, healthy, loved...

I don't know what the 'real' answer is to this question. But I do believe that, as long as parents are devoted to raising their children in a loving home, the number is not what's important.

Oh, and my brother who made that stupid comment? My four grew up to be healthy, productive, intelligent, dynamic, loving, loyal, humorous, delightful, beautiful women. His two? The mayor and deputy mayor of Dysfunction City.

November NaBloPoMo


  1. I think my heart would of been big enough to have and lot 10-12 or more children but the Lord gave me one when the doctors said none. So thus daycare and in my 14 years I have had a dozen kids and 7 of them since birth and 3 of them still come even when there's no daycare, they come for my love so pooh to your brother. The heart grows with each child, as long as want them you will love them.
    Blessings my friend!!!

  2. I didn't want more than one child because he had the energy and will
    Of two. I didn't have patience. I envy women who could have more. I think as long as you can provide a home and financially have the means, have as many ad you want.

  3. I'm the oldest of four. We all turned out just fine, and my mom worked full time. We also lived near a family with 10 kids (later 12!!). The same experience that you had with your family of 10. Amazing parents, great kids, loving and fun and involved. I loved going to their house to play.

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  5.'s so interesting to me, that people who have one or two or NO children are so opinionated on how many children someone should have. I have five grown children...wonderful wonderful people. They are smart, educated, loving, well-balanced, hard working, loyal to the bone kids that anyone would be proud of! We didn't have a lot of money, I was a stay at home mom for most of their young lives. I love big families and am so happy I had all of them...I even wish I could have had just one more to round it out!! My cousin has 9 and they are just as tell your brother he's full of mud...and be proud of your kids! It's not the number of kids you's the integrity and love in which they are raised!

  6. One thing to consider about how much love there is to go around: Children in large families also have their siblings to love them! And children in the large families I've known seem to be less demanding and selfish so they start adding to the pot of love early on. When the parents are gone, there are more people left to continue being loving family.
    But love is not such a commodity that it can be measured like material things. It's the kind of thing that, the more you give, the more you have to give.

  7. Julie- I know it is! You've got more kids than the rest of us and they all know how much you love them! :)

    Barb- Agreed. If I had known how ADHD Breezy was going to be, I would have stopped at one. LOL

    Terri- I'm the oldest of four too. Which is funny when you think that my brother made that comment. LOL

    Stitcher- Oh, I told him he's full of mud. Well, 'mud' isn't the exact word I used. LOL You and I were a lot alike when raising children. No wonder they all turned out so great. :)

    Gretchen- Well said!!!


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