What it’s Like to Live in a Big Family: The Good and the Bad

Let’s face it; it doesn’t matter whether you have a big family, a small family, or a chosen family, sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s bad. As Forest Gump said, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.”

The truth is living in a big family isn’t much different than any other family. We have our great days and we have our bad days. However, the challenges we face may be a little different.

The Good

Although I have many days that I want to just sit in a closet and cry, more so since we’ve all been stuck together in lockdown (only kidding!)I have many good days with my big family. When it’s good it is good! Here are just a few of the good things you have to look forward to with a big family:

Life is never boring.

There is always something going on, and you never have time to get bored, our lives are always so busy, I couldn’t imagine having just one child, now that all seven are home, there’s always someone to play a computer game with, or challenge to a game of badminton.

Big Family Unit

There is so much love.

I can’t imagine having less people to love or less people that love me, and think how many of us there will be in the family unit if all of the children get married and have children! 

You have built in babysitters.

Once in awhile you just need to get away, and when you have a large family, the good thing is you have built in babysitters, although you do have to negotiate a price, as it may be cheaper for you to ask the grandparents!

There are tons of helpers.

One of the great things about a big family is that you have many people to help you when you need help, whether it be helping round the house or a shopping trip, there’s always someone on hand to rely on.

There is always someone there.

When life gets tough, there is always a child to draw you a picture or give you the best hug in the world, its certainly never lonely, and with the added love of a big slobbery Newfie, I am never alone, in fact it’s VERY quiet when they are all in education.

Big family enjoying a meal together

Family Celebrations are Epic!

During lockdown we have had five of our birthdays, but with nine members of the family (plus the dog) the house felt full of people and we were able to play party games, sing happy birthday and eat a giant cake, without feeling like people were missing!

The Bad

Some days, when you are the mother of a big family, you find it almost unbearable to function. Because there is always someone there, there is never any alone time or time in general. Here are just a few of the bad things about a big family:

Lack of Space

Its fine when the children are small and don’t need any room for belongings, but as they get older and start to gather possessions, they all need more space, when I was younger my parents added a bedroom and ensuite above our garage, so we are looking at the costs to build a garage extension with the view to extending the overall floorplan of our property.

It’s expensive.

Everything you do is expensive because you can’t just buy one of something; you have to buy at least a couple of packets, and a day out is not a cheap option, even if you do find some special ‘family tickets’ they usually consist of 2 adults and up to 3 children!

The house is always messy.

With so many coming in and out, it is absolutely impossible to keep up with the mess, nine coats, nine pairs of wellies, nine umbrellas, you get the idea!! Most of the children share bedrooms, so it’s easy for them to blame the mess on the others in the house too.

Big family Laundry is neverending

The laundry is never done.

I literally never see the end of the basket. It’s impossible. With so many living in one house and only one washer and dryer, laundry is always there to do, even though we have a 13kg washing machine, one set of dirty clothes each per day means 63 sets of clothes per week!

Everyone is a different age.

In a big family you may have teenagers and toddlers at the same time. So, as you deal with toddler tantrums, you are dealing with teenage strops, as well as being the chauffeur and housekeeper!

Big family is exhausting

It is exhausting.

Because there is always someone around, there is always something going on. You basically never stop, never sleep, and live on caffeine, the younger children go to bed earlier, whilst the teens go to bed late, which means you never really settle until they are all in bed, but then the younger members of the family never want to lie in, so you end up with less sleep than anyone in the house.

No matter how bad it may be, the good always outweighs the bad. Do you have a big family? Share the good and the bad in the comments below!

this is a collaborative post

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