How many kids should you have?
At the same time, having only one kid means parents miss out on the opportunity to have at least one boy and one girl—an arrangement they have tended to prefer for half a century, if not longer. (Couples are generally more likely to stop having children once they have one of each.) Maybe this is another reason two is such a popular number—though in the long run, one researcher found that having all girls or all boys doesn’t meaningfully affect the happiness of mothers who wanted at least one of each. (This researcher didn’t look at dads’ preferences.)– The Atlantic
First of all, hat tip/LOL at “didn’t look at dads’ preferences”. I mean, I can’t blame them.
Secondly, the answer is two. God bless my friends diving into three kid territory (those friends exist now), but it’s definitely two. Having more than one is a game changer, but I think for the most part it’s a change the average parent will ultimately enjoy. Having a third just feels like — to me — the worst of both worlds. You have more hilarity to enjoy, but it’s paired with an increase in logistics that soaks up the time you’d actually use to experience the hilarity.
Maybe you just need a super-parent in your home to make this work. My wife and I see ourselves as pretty good parents, but we’re also ordinary, flawed people with intense jobs and deeply personal hobbies & interests we barely get to pursue anymore, so the costs of parenting (along with the joys) are pretty tangible to us. So not only am I a fan of the two kid approach, I’m a fan of our accidentally compressed timeline that front-loaded our kids’ heaviest logistics (diapers, naps, trying to figure out what someone needs when they can’t talk, etc.). Pretty soon we’re going to be done with the baby stuff, and I think as character-building as its been, we’re going to really enjoy raising little citizens.