Considering to have a second baby but feeling concerned about how your firstborn child will feel and react? You’re not alone, mama.
Some parents are worried that their firstborn child will feel an impending threat of losing parental love and attention to his new sibling. But you know what? This kind of worry may bring about a scarcity mindset.
First of all, it teaches the child that love is limited. But is love really limited? Certainly not! However, it does largely depend on the parents. If the parents’ ability to love grows alongside the size of family, then love would be boundless. Love would not be perceived as a fixed-size whole cake, either to be served exclusively to just one child or shared among many.
So, is it possible for parents to improve their ability to love? Most of the time, yes. When a couple first gets married, they only have to take care of their own lives. But when a child comes into the picture, it is a whole new ball game. There are so many things to take care of and to worry about, so parents’ accountability will inevitably grow. This sense of accountability is essential for developing the ability to love.
In addition to accountability, patience is equally essential in parenting. Both of these traits must be nurtured. Do you notice that, each time after you yell at your children, you will be overwhelmed with a sense of guilt but you will also be reminded to express yourself better and be more patient next time. This is love; it drives us to be better parents. I can’t find anything else in this world that can nurture someone’s understanding, tolerance, patience and care, more than having a child.
In short, parental love is certainly not limited. Just as our work experience, parenting experiences grow over the years, as long as you are committed to growth. However, there are parents who are complacent, just like some lazy employees, never wanting to grow and change for the better. If this is the case, it’s better if they don’t go for a second child.
So, when deciding if you should have a second child, the most important consideration isn’t your family’s blessing but your own willingness, commitment and ability to grow and change.
Other than that, the perception that a new sibling may take away existing parental love leads the child to becoming a constant recipient of love, depriving the child’s opportunity to be a provider of love. This means that the child will only expect an external source of love. As we explore our spiritual development, most of us will learn that we should first love ourselves and be our own primary source of love. We should help our child to learn how to love himself.
When I was pregnant with my second child, I often reminded my firstborn son, “You are going to have a new family member! She is going to be close with you, just like papa and mama! She will be with you for a longer time than we can be. The two of you are going to be siblings to each other, as well as children to us. So you should love her, very very much.” By doing so, my son learns that love is not scarce, and he gets to develop a sense of responsibility and accountability. He also realises that he too, can love someone, just like how his parents can love him.