Which is harder: going from 1 to 2 children or 2 to 3?

Any number of kids brings its own challenges, but we were curious: which transition do mums find the toughest? It seems there's a mix of opinion - and even celeb mum Jools Oliver's weighed in...


Now, first off, we’ll say right here that in the big old parenting world, going from 0 kids to 1 (or perhaps straight to 2 or 3 if you have twins or triplets) is the biggest transition most of us make…


That’s when we’re dealing with all those new issues that come with being a mum. The ones that leave us ecstatic, exhausted, confused and surprised all at once ?

But once you’ve become a parent, if you decide to have more children, which of those early transitions is toughest? Having the 2nd baby? Or going from 2 to 3?

We know there are lots of other combos, of course. We have a mum in the MFM office who went from 1 to 3 when her 2nd pregnancy resulted in twins, and another who’s deliberately stuck at just one so she’ll never need to answer this question.

But for those of you who’ve had 3 (or perhaps you’ve had 2 and are thinking about a 3rd), which stage was hardest?

We asked our mums on our Facebook community and had lots of interesting – and pretty evenly split – responses…

The mums who say going from 1 to 2 is harder

Jolene G reckons after you’ve had 2, things become that bit easier and you take it all in your stride. She tells us:

“Going from 1 to 2 was definitely harder for me. I went from 3 to 4 recently and at this stage it’s just a case of ‘sure what’s one more ?”

Ellie C agrees: “1-2 was much harder than 2-3 in my opinion!” and Samantha C said the exact same thing.

Sian P even decided to stop at 2 as she found 2 to be quite enough, saying: “Couldn’t even imagine having 3 – I stopped at 2 and had them 6 years apart lol.”

The mums who say going from 2 to 3 is harder

Others though, reckon going from 2 to 3 is tougher – because of the logistics, or the fact you don’t have as much room – or 3 hands!

Even celeb mum-of-5 Jools Oliver says the transition from 2 to 3 is by far the toughest. “I did have that same feeling,” she told MFM in an exclusive chat.

“Going from 2 to 3 was so much harder I felt,” Jocey B agreed. “Not enough hands or time to spare, the logistics for travelling, 3 car seats are a bugger to fit in a standard car, public transport – everything in 2s!

“Now mine are older it’s getting easier except for day trips – theme parks don’t cater for 5, hotels don’t either.

“But when everyone is fed, rested and happy it’s amazing having the 3 playing and giggling together.”

Isabel H has found the move from 2 to 3 tough, too, even with fairly big age gap between the first 2. She says:

“2-3 harder for me. My eldest was 7 when her sister was born so I was able include her, but when their brother arrived they were 9 1/2 and 2 1/2.

“My youngest daughter found it very difficult to adapt. A year on she still hasn’t I don’t think.”

Sarah S thinks the age gap can be a factor too: “2-3 is harder… but then there is less than a year between my number 2 and 3.

“My 3 boys are 5, 3 and 2 years… So it’s very much non-stop at the moment.” We totally get that Sarah ?

What do you think?

If you have 3 kids – which transition did you find the hardest to adapt to -having your second child, or your third? Does the age gap make a difference?

Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook or Instagram

Images: Getty Images

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