Saturday, December 8, 2012

When There's Love At Home

I get so many emails from parents that are contemplating having more children.They write with their concerns and questions, in the end wanting to know what my perspective is on the subject. Keep in mind that you may have a different perspective than I do. That's ok, as long as you remember that this is my perspective.

I guess I'll start by saying that none of our kids have been planned. A few months prior to getting pregnant I would always have a experience or some sort of nudge letting us know that we were about to have a baby. My husband and I never sat down and said "Ok, let's start trying for a baby!" It always felt prompted.

We have 3 kiddos ages 4, 3 and 1. We found out that our 4 and 3 year old had Autism when I was 1/2 way through my 3rd pregnancy. I can't begin to tell you how I felt at that moment. I layed in bed for what felt like forever but was the course of 3 days, and cried. I felt so guilty that I was pregnant. I knew the brunt of this would fall on me. With my husbands work and school schedule, I knew I would be the one at the meetings, involved in their therapies and handling their behaviors. I worried what if the baby I was carrying was Autistic too? What if he wasn't and here I was bringing him into this "Autistic Sibling" life? What if he grew up resenting me? What if?...What if?...What if? Those were the only questions that seemed to circulate round my mind. I was severely depressed at this time, I was cursed with mentally unstable in-laws from the underworld that we had just slapped with Restraining Orders and then the news of my two toddlers. My husband was doing his best to encourage me. He would frequently tell me that if anyone could do this, it was him and I. Because we had love at home. Still, it wasn't enough to get me out of bed.

That following weekend, I had quite the experience that snapped me out of the funk I was in. As my husband and I sat there with heavy hearts over the heart warming experience we had had, we knew a way would be provided for us that we could effectively take care of our family and the needs that would arise. I never understood how some would say that Autism tore their marriage apart. For my husband and I it did the very opposite. We were already close but it made us that much closer. We know our kids need both of us. So with that all said, how do we feel about having more kids???

For my husband and I, we have a good solid marriage. I'm also a stay at home mom, which works for us because we have no family to help or babysit. We do our date nights when our kiddos go to bed or are at school and even then we still have our 1 year old with us. This all works for us. At this point we understand our kids that have Autism, we know how to calm them, for the most part. I feel like I have my household under control. We have next to no debt, we know how to budge and I still feel like my sanity is in tact. So for us, we say YES to having more kids BUT only after you evaluate your own situation. Can you handle more? Is your sanity in tact? Do you have the time to spend with them? Is the relationship you're in solid?

Why I Think Having More Kids Benefits Kids On The Spectrum

First I should say that my son has moderate Autism and my Daughter has Severe. I have seen with my own kids that having more kids pushes my Spectrum kiddos out of their "Autism" bubble. For example, my daughter is perfectly content being on her own. Prefers it actually. Having a very mobile and social 1 year old doesn't allow for that. He's always in her face, accidentally sitting on her with his fat bum, sneaks her snacks, slobbers on her, you name it. Sometimes she'll yell and flap but it only lasts for a few seconds. Today I watched my 1 year old wobble over to my 4 year old (who is also on the Spectrum), grab his hand and start sucking/gnawing on his finger. My 4 year old started laughing. Not the typical response for a kid on the Spectrum, right? However, after months of this, he has gotten used to it.

If you keep your kiddos in a box you made for them, they aren't going to grow and develop their weaknesses into strengths. When we first brought our 1 year old home, my daughter screamed every time he cried (she's sensitive to noise). Now she brings him his bottle. Also not the typical response for a child on the Severe end of the Spectrum, right? She learned how to cope. Her and my 4 year old also enjoy wrestling! It's my belief that it's the best thing you can do for their Autism, is to have more children. It teaches them so many wonderful things. One of the biggest ones we have seen is how to cope when unpredictable situations arise.

So in a nutshell, this is my take on having more children. You can be expecting more children from There's Tulips In Holland! Sooner than you might think, too ;)


  1. COngratulations, I think!! I just wanted to say I love this post and agree. I have 5 children and it is my middle son who is severely, non verbal autistic. Though he is severe he has a wonderful disposition and accepts and looks for love and affection. His older brothers are 14 and 13(he is 6). We never tried either the boys all came when they weremeant to. From the moment Ryan was born everything was different, didn't know what we were deling with right away but we knew he was going to need a lot of help. Ryan was diagnosed early at about 21 months and one of the first things the doctors told us thatday is he would benefit from a younger sibling. We agreed, and I didn't feel my family was complete, so we kept going along and after awhile our daughters were born. They are 3 and 1 now. I tru;y believe the girls andmy big guys are nothing but beneficial for Ryan. They all give him something and they all love and care for him. What Ryan has given them is also endless. I strongly believe that having to tolerate the chaos of being 1 of 5 is beneficial in every way for Ryan. He can't be alone and he doesn't want to be. Though Ryan is still consideredsevere for so many reasons, in his ability to love and be loved he is so far above and i think that comes from our crew.

  2. Your two kids are to cute !!! =] cute Fam pics !!!

  3. Hey there! I just found your blog because you left a comment on mine way back in October! I was reviewing posts for a best of 2012 post and there was your comment. :) I've enjoyed catching up on some of your posts here and look forward to reading more.

    Have a great new year!

  4. Sounds like an announcement....