Parenting is a labour of love. We all adore our kids, and would do anything for them, right? But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Which is why you may think that parents with more kids are more stressed than ones with less; but a 2013 study, which has resurfaced this week, indicates that’s not necessarily the case.
The study, which surveyed 7,164 mothers in the United States, was conducted by the US Today show. It concluded that mums with three kids are more stressed out than those with one, two, four or more children.
New York psychiatrist Dr Janet Taylor explained to Today that apparently many mothers don’t begin to relax in motherhood until after their fourth child. And she’s speaking from experience, as a mother of four – including a set of twins.
“There’s just not enough space in your head for perfectionism when you get to four or more kids,” she said.
“The more children you have, the more confident you become in your parenting abilities. You have to let go… and then you’re just thankful when they all get to school on time.”
The survey also found that mothers with four or more kids reported less stress, because once a ‘critical mass’ of kids is reached, family life seems to hit its stride.
Which makes you feel for mums of three kids – and think of one of the world’s most famous families of three kids: the Cambridges.