After marriage the next important decision is having a child. This attains further importance when thinking of having a second child as it is bound to affect each and every aspect of life namely, the spouse, first child, other family members, finances, and your comfort and time involvement.
Proper planning is necessary while deciding to have a second child. There are two schools of thought regarding timing of having the second child. According to some, if it is possible to manage having two children at short intervals, then both will grow up together and the mother will be free soon with complete family. The other is having long gap between two children. This is a personal decision depending upon the circumstances in which the family is placed.
The decision of having a second child should be a happy transition and not a traumatic experience for the whole family. It is said that after pregnancy and child birth, there are marked hormonal changes in the body of the mother and also some nutrients get depleted. It takes about two years for the body to come back to normal, so there should be a difference of two years from the end of the first pregnancy to the next conception. Also the coming of the second child will have psychological effect on the whole family. This period of two years will give time to adjust to this change.
The next important thing is how to inform the first child about the arrival of a new sibling. The ideal time to tell the child will be when pregnancy is midterm. It should not be an abrupt process. Inform the first child about the arrival of a new member, and benefits to him or her as there will be a new friend to play with and look after.
The first few months after a child is born involves lot of activities. Looking after the new child takes up a lot of time of the mother. A careful and continuous look at the change of behaviour, if any, in the first child is necessary, and in no case should he feel neglected by the mother. As far as possible, involve the first child in bringing up the second one and he should be assigned specific duties.
The husband should also play a positive role in looking after the family and manage needed finances both for short and long term. The proper management will leave a long term effect on the whole family and the children will grow up as better citizens.