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parents panel

Parents Panel: Readers share the differences between their first and second pregnancies

More hormonal mood swings, less frantic Googling – and *far* better nappy-changing skills.

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AS PART OF’s weekly Family Magazine, we wanted to create a space for parents to share their views. A place where mums and dads could share their experiences, lessons learned, and even mistakes along the way. 

If you decide to have a second (or third, or fourth) baby, you’re at least assured of knowing what to expect. That said, a second pregnancy and baby can bring a whole new set of challenges:from different pregnancy symptoms to navigating the parenting of two kids, rather than one.

This week we’re asking our panel (at least, those it applies to)…

What was the biggest difference you noticed with your second pregnancy?

Here’s what they had to say…

Parents Panel All 7 - Copy - Copy Top L-R: Olly Keegan, Alan Dooley, Denise, Ken Hyland. Middle L-R: Ríona Flood, Ross Boxshall, Marta Lisiecka, Denise Cumiskey. Bottom L-R: Kait Quinn, Susannah O’Brien, Derek McInerney, Suzie Kelly

I didn’t have to look everything up online: With knowledge comes power. Having gone through it all already, you have less need to panic or Google every little ache or twinge. Also financially you are better organised the second time round – you know what you need and you don’t waste money on items that you *think* you might need. There was one downside to my second pregnancy though: the offers of help were far fewer, as everyone must have thought I was a pro at that stage!

- Denise Cumiskey

I know what she’s going through: I have a slightly different perspective with the second pregnancy. For a start, it’s not me that’s pregnant this time! My wife is almost six months pregnant and due early next year. I carried our first son who is four. We never initially planned that it would happen this way but it’s just the way it’s panned out. This relatively unique situation allows us both to experience each “side” of pregnancy.  Although each pregnancy can be different for different women, at least I can empathise with my wife over how she is feeling. I’d like to think that I’m aware of things like the tiredness and how it can just hit you out of nowhere.

- Olly Keegan

shutterstock_755788630 Shutterstock / Natalia Deriabina Shutterstock / Natalia Deriabina / Natalia Deriabina

I’m much more hormonal: I am 39 weeks pregnant with my second child this week, so hopefully the baby comes soon! The pregnancy itself is different to the first one. I look different (less weight but my hair and skin are much worse), and I am much more hormonal – but I have fewer issues with back pain. Also I am SO much more tired this time around. The whole pregnancy has flown by as I am so busy with Tymek (my son), full-time work, marriage and everything else.

- Marta Lisiecka

People assume you have it all sussed: You definitely get treated differently when you’re “an old hand” at the pregnancy stuff. People always comment “Sure you know what you’re doing this time.” But we were still as unsuspecting and naive the second time around! In our second pregnancy we initially found out that we were expecting triplets so nothing felt as it did on our first. We soon learned that we would only give birth to twins but it was still a huge novelty all over again.

- Ross Boxshall

IMG_0002 'The most obvious difference with our second pregnancy (twins) was the size of the bump!' Ross Boxshall Ross Boxshall

We went from one toddler to two kids under two: From a Dad’s perspective the only real difference was that I was ready for the rollercoaster that was pregnancy. I knew there would be pregnancy hormones (mood swings, my wife’s sudden urges to kill me etc), sleepless nights with lots of crying (some of it mine). The toughest part was adapting to suddenly having two under two.It was important to make sure that our eldest didn’t feel left out or that he was being replaced by the new baby.

- Ken Hyland

More Parents Panel: What scared you most about parenthood before you had kids?>

More Parents Panel: What’s one thing your child just won’t eat?>

Want to win a night of magical family fun at Dublin Zoo’s Wild Lights? Enter here – and don’t forget to subscribe to our weekly Family Newsletter below! 

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