If you're anything like most women out there, you have had a set number in your mind since before you can remember as to how many children you've wanted to have. After the first child, this number may have swayed a little bit. After the second, this number may have swayed A LOT. What is it about this set number that makes it so flexible? In other words, how do you know when enough is enough and you're done having babies?
When the baby fever comes to a halt
Time explains that "if at some point you’ve had an irrepressible, inexplicable urge to make a baby, you may be interested to know there’s a term for that — baby fever — and that it’s a bona fide physical and emotional phenomenon". Suggested to be linked to the biological clock, in which time is of the essence when it comes to baby making, baby fever gets most of us at some point. In saying that, however, if you're looking at a newborn baby and thinking about how insanely adorable they are, rather than how much you want to have another one, chances are your baby fever days are coming to a close. Experiencing little to no baby fever-but still wanting all the snuggles!- is a tell-tale indication that it's probably time to pass the baby making onto another friend or family member while you just sit back and soak up all of the smiles and cuddles.
When you're too overwhelmed
Being a mom is tough no matter how many children you have. Whether it be one or nine, if you feel like there just isn't any more of you to give, sticking with the number of children that you have might be a good idea. That way you can ensure each of your children has enough of your attention to flourish. In addition, stretching yourself too thin in all aspects of motherhood is never a good idea, although it happens to the majority of us. If you've reached that point where you just want to be able to breathe and start learning who you are again, that's another clue you've reached your baby limit.
When you feel complete
A lot of moms can relate to the feeling of incompleteness, especially after having their first and only child. If you aren't done having babies, most of the time, you feel like someone is missing from your family unit. You feel like someone is still waiting to be born and that the child you have now is missing a sibling. You will know when your family is complete because that sense of feeling unfinished goes away. It no longer is a sad thing (okay, maybe it's a little sad) to think that you can finally get rid of all of the baby gear in your house.
When you come to that point in your life (if you aren't there already) when you're asking yourself if the days of pregnancy kicks, newborn noises, and "firsts" are over, remember these three signs and if you can relate to all of them... well then you have your answer. If you are on the fence about whether or not you want another baby, the chances are pretty good that you aren't done. When you are, you will know it.