The Age Difference ~ 4 Years

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I never planned (*) for my kids to be 4 years apart, but I have clearly learned that things do not always go as planned. It was my intent for them to be two years apart, but obviously that did not happen. In my head, a two year gap was the perfect age difference. I mean, L would have his time to be the baby, but he and the new kid would still be nice and close in age so they’d be able to play together.  Yep, a two year age difference was where it was at.

But now?  Now I think a 4 year age difference is perfect.  WB is the baby.  L is the big kid. L doesn’t want to revert back to “baby stuff”.  I don’t have to worry about him trying to steal WB’s pacifiers (not that WB uses one, but whatever), having a baby steal “his” crib, potty training, etc.  Sure he likes WB’s toys, but the difference is that he plays with WB’s toys with WB.  And he wants to play with WB.  Oh, and he plays nicely with him.  He understands that WB is, well, a baby.  He knows he needs to be gentle and not push or hit or bite.   And if I need to give WB a bath or run upstairs to change WB’s diaper or go feed him (*), I don’t have to worry about leaving L alone for a few minutes.  He’s not going to burn the house down or climb on the kitchen counters or any of that.  He’s perfectly capable of entertaining himself (***) for a few minutes.  Oh, and L can even feed WB while I am driving if it comes to that (thanks to my Podee bottles of course).

And the best part is that L loves being a big brother.  And WB worships him.  L can do no wrong in WB’s eyes.  It’s so fun to watch.  And if WB cries, L tries to comfort him and to make him feel better.  If I am getting ready or whatever and WB is fussing in his crib, L is more than happy to go in WB’s room, climb in the crib and sit in there and talk to him, play with him, etc.  So d*mn sweet ;).  I know this could all blow up in my face tomorrow, but I am loving it right now!

And now it’s your turn.  What are the age differences between your kids?  Do you love it? What’s the best part?  And the worst?  I cannot wait to hear!

(*) Plans are dumb anyways.
(**) Remember, WB likes to eat in a dark room with no distractions.
(***) Or letting Sponge Bob or Scooby Doo entertain him.

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Jennifer is the author and founder of Subscription Box Ramblings. She first discovered subscription boxes in 2012 and has been addicted since. Current favorites include CAUSEBOX, Boxycharm and Beachly!

This Post Has 20 Comments

  1. Kelsey N.

    2 years apart is good and bad. Mason loves to help and he knows to be nice with the baby. He is also at the terrible two’s so it can be stressful at times when baby is crying and Mason is throwing a fit about something. Dill and Mason are almost 4 years apart and that was nice too. I dont think I could do anything closer than 2 years apart though.

  2. Amanda

    Mine are 13 mos apart. I know people think I’m insane (and it certainly wasn’t planned), but I have always loved it. If I had waited 4 years after Darren, there’s a strong possiblity he would have been an only child. The thought of starting over horrifies me. I would have loved to have had another 2 or 3 kids, but I would have wanted them all about a year apart. Now that Leah’s nearly 5, I really don’t want to go back to diapers and sleepless nights and babies who cry FOR NO REASON.

  3. Elizabeth

    My first two were 21 months apart. It was pretty easy and they have grown up the best of friends (aged 9 and 7 right now). The third was almost three years younger then the last. He is kind of the odd ball out but it was still easy introducing him into the family. I’m due next spring with number 4 and my youngest will be a few months shy of 5 when the baby is born. Will be interesting to see how easy/hard that age difference will be.

  4. Kyra

    I am so glad to hear this! I hadn’t planned to have mine this far apart (we’re getting ready to try for #2 soon!) but my insurance co said otherwise. However M will be 5 by the time #2 is born. I also like that baby #2 will get solo time with me bc M will be at school part of the day!

  5. Jennifer

    My babies are 20 months apart (2 years old and 6 months old) Since I have only been experiencing this age gap for 6 months, I can say I love that they will be close in age during school etc, but at this stage it has been more difficult. Although he is a toddler and is gaining independence my little guy still needs me. He has his moments of crying, wanting to be held and they usually happen when she is crying and is needing me. He loves his baby sister, but doesn’t always understand the meaning of gentle so I have to watch them together always. He loves to play with her and also loves to take her toys away. He is helpful if I need him to grab her bottle, give her her binky or make her laugh if she is fussy. I know the older he gets the easier it will be. But the best of it all is she is in love with her big brother and he is in love with his little sister, and I think no matter the age gap this will always be and is the sweetest thing for a mother to watch!!

  6. Jenny

    Mine are 3 years and 2 weeks apart. Hubby and I had said between 2 and 3 years would be great and this is how it turned out. I do think its a great difference because like you said N is able to do some things on his own while I’m dealing with C. We’ve been at this for almost 21months now and they are doing great. Our issue now is one I know won’t matter the age difference is C wanting to do everything that N can do and playing with all of Ns toys and things. That is a sibling issue and not an age issue though. 🙂

    BTW this would make a great scrapbook page. I may have to borrow this idea for my boys.

  7. Alicia

    I have 3 kids. My daughter is 11, my first son is 9 and my second son is 4. The two year age gap is good and the 5 year age gap is good too!! The oldest 2 are close in age and were basically raised together, but it was hard toting a baby and toddler everywhere and I swear I hardly ever went anywhere during those years!! They love each other and they hate each other, if that makes sense.

    Now, we thought we were done when # 3 came along…… It’s been GREAT! The older two got to take part in having a baby in the house – bottles, diapers, baby food, playing, etc. My older two are in school and it’s kinda nice just having one at home these days. However, my older two go to private school, so we do spend a lot of time on the road! The downside to the 5 year age gap – starting all over again. We had just gained a certain amount of “freedom” and then started all over again with a newborn. We had gotten rid of almost everything baby gear wise too!! But, I wouldn’t trade my red headed little boy for anything in the world. He is the baby and he knows it!! While he can get a bit bratty sometimes, he is still mostly the cute “baby” that we all spoil.

    My point – age differences happen for a reason. I don’t think I would still be sane if #3 came 2 years after #2. He needed to come a bit later so I wouldn’t go crazy, LOL!! Age differences have a way of working out, no matter what they are!

  8. Kelley

    15 months between my son and daughter and 22 months between my daughter and youngest son. The oldest 2 do fight, but they are also super close and do everything together!

  9. Shannon Dew

    Even when I was a “one and done” mom I always said IF we had another I wanted them to be further out, like 3 -4 years. Now that IF has turned into WHEN I am so glad KP will be a little older whenever Baby Dew #2 shows up. For all the reasons you listed.

  10. Cindy

    Two years, nine months. Second pregnancy: Twins! Three kids under 3 for those keeping track. It was exhausting and hard. The best part…they are are all “close” now because they have much in common with no big age gap between them, they had to learn to share and get along with each other. The worst part…parents not getting a break…when they were babies. (Pretty harsh, right!?) 🙂

  11. Norma

    We were just talking about this at work today… Mine are 4 years apart too & it’s perfect for us. I can’t imagine having a 2 year old & a baby. At the age of 4 they understand do much more than a 2 year old and to me it made it easier to divide my time 🙂 I honestly think I would have gone crazy with a toddler & a baby. Toddlers are so unpredictable most of the time. By the age of 4 my daughter was well mannered, of course she still had her days, but they were much milder than 2 or 3.

  12. Carolyn

    all of my kids are 2.5 years apart and I thought even further apart would have been easier. I thought age 2 was a pretty tough age with my girls. We didnt have any issues with them reverting back to baby ways, but more that was just an active, tough age! Big girl beds, potty training, ect.

  13. Simone

    My oldest are 4 and 5, it was hard at first but they are great together now. We also just had another baby boy 5 Weeks ago and as for now the age gap has been great and I am enjoying my last baby and so are my boys.

  14. Karen

    My girls are almost 5 years apart my oldest is almost 6 and the baby is 15 months. For the most part the age gap is great for the same reasons you listed, the biggest challange was for my oldest was not being the only child & grandchild anymore. She still has her moments now & then, but she is a great big sister!

  15. Alysia

    I could write a book on this. But I’ll keep it short & write my own post 😉 Thanks for the inspiration. My oldest 2 are 18 months apart. There are 3 1/2 years between kids #2 & #3. And there are 2 1/2 years between kids #3 & #4. Each has had its advantages and disadvantages, but it’s all good. They all fight, regardless of the age difference between them. But they are super close too. My grandma had 6 kids in 7 years…now that I cannot imagine!

  16. Jen

    My kids (a boy and girl) are 20.5 months apart (planned) and I love it. They have pretty much been the best of friends their whole lives. They are now 18 and 16 and I can say the worst part about it is having two teen drivers at the same time (boy is insurance expensive!) and I will have two in college at the same time for 2 years. Yeah, I never thought of that one either. I loved getting all the baby stuff over and done with. I was young when I had my kids and that’s something I enjoyed as well. We might have struggled a little moneywise when the kids where little, but they didn’t know they didn’t have the latest and greatest new toys. Now that they are older, I can appreciate those struggles and be happy we are in a much better place when they really need us to be.

  17. Sarah

    My daughters are 2 years and 3 months apart. When the youngest was a baby, my 2 year old was “little miss mommy” and that made things easier. I just had her get involved and she’s been helping ever since. They are now 6 and 4 and are the best of friends. Sure, they fight but they’ll be there for each other through it all and that makes my heart happy!

  18. Deena

    My two kids are almost four years apart and like you, it’s not what I planned, but it worked out perfectly. It is great for all the reasons you listed and I really can’t think of any significant cons to the gap. My friend just had her second baby and the kids are two years apart and she is having a bit of a tough time with a toddler and newborn. Oh, my nine month old has to nurse in his dark room with no distractions, too! It’s so weird!

  19. Diane

    My kids are 10 years apart, my daughter from my previous marriage. I absolutely love it!! She has been so amazing with her little brother since day one ! And now, she babysits 🙂 He adores his big sister, he’s too young to fight with her, but I know it’ll happen. We may try for another within the next year, for some reason I always wanted three kids 🙂 My brother is 5 yrs younger than me and I hated him…I think because I always wanted a sister. We get along now 🙂

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