Making 2nd Bedroom mostly about Baby
Kind of a tie in with a previous post about Erik's daughter being bossy...she made another comment the other day about how, if we move into a 2nd bedroom, it would not only be the baby's but hers and her brother's room as well so decorating the 2nd bedroom with a Care Bear's theme wouldn't be fair.
This is more of a vent than anything. This is my first baby. Right now, I pay for EVERYTHING (rent, gas, family activities, etc). She and her brother have their own rooms - they do NOT share bedrooms- in their mom's apartment in which they live there full time. Eire has no 2nd home to visit on alternate weekends and any 2nd bedroom would be her domain full time. In some ways, it's unfair to Eire to have to share part of her room with her half siblings. I won't point this out to Erik's daughter only because I don't want her to feel like she doesn't belong nor make her think/feel she's intruding on a home situation.
I did bring it up to Erik on our drive today that the kids are only with us very part time - alternate weekends - so why would the 2nd room have to be split 3 ways?? To negotiate, I would be okay with the 2nd room being divided 3 ways for the first 6 months to 1 year of Eire's birth since it makes sense to set up a nursery corner for Eire in our master bedroom. By the 6th to 8th month mark we'd gradually move her into the 2nd bedroom so by her 1st birthday she can have her own room. Simultaneously, we would also transition the 2 older kids' stuff inside the closet or maybe storage??? What do you mom's think about that?...Good idea or maybe not such a great idea as I don't want the kids to feel like they're being pushed out and unwelcome. What do you think would be a healthy approach to this? How would you explain to an 11 and 13 year old?
If we end up getting a storage unit in town, I want Erik to pay for it all out of his paycheck. I live very simple and don't own much. The majority of the stuff already inside Erik's Dad's garage is recreational/camping/outdoor gear and kids' toys. I think I would get bitter and resentful if I had to pay for something that I would want to save or spend on my baby.
I don't want to get into your personal finances, but it also wouldn't be fair for you to pay everything and have to move up to a bigger home. I think this is the time to tell your significant other to step it up and help your family get into a position to where your kids can have their own room too. Just my opinion, take that for what it is worth.
As for the 11 and 13 yr olds. They are old enough to understand baby is with you 100% and they are with you part time. This is baby's room and it will be decorated accordingly. If there is a option for colors of care bears then they can help pick out colors or placement of the bears but the room will be of Care Bears. Life is NOT fair and this is something they will have to deal with. You do pay for everything so you have a majority say in the matter. Their opinions can help influence but they will not dominate.
I hope this helps. Good luck!
And I'm thinking of asking both kids, if the tables were turned, where sister and brother had to share a bedroom because one of them was with Mom full time and the other only part time & there's only 2 rooms, how would they resolve this fairly? Does it make sense to let the child who lives with Mom full time to have it primarily their bedroom and when sibling arrives for the weekend to share the bedroom and give that person some corner space? The great thing about Erik's daughter is that she has demonstrated empathy, and I know she'll be able to see everyone's viewpoints. I'll definitely emphasize that wherever we move to, it will be OUR home regardless of full time/part time weekend stays. But in the context of privacy/space, everyone needs to share and be conscientious of the space.
The 2B apartment that we'll eventually move into whether now or down the road, unfortunately CANNOT accommodate the kids' toys that are currently in the garage of the place we house share. We are hoping to find a big enough storage unit that is nearby. I've already decided that my pre-pregnancy clothes will go to my mom's provided that her offer still stands to let me store my clothes there. A tote or two per kid can get stored in the 2nd bedroom closet and anything additional they want to play with that is in another tote, they could take out of the storage unit but must be returned to the storage unit or swapped out with one of the other totes prior to them going back to their Mom's.
Erik is going through a work assessment with Vocational Rehabilitation so he can get retrained for a different line of work. He completed his first week unpaid and starting tomorrow all paid work hours. Yay! His body can only handle 20 hours per week being on his feet. Most of you know the story I think (He was a pedestrian struck by a moving vehicle at 45 MPH when he was 25. He has a host of physical challenges and his chronic pain worsens every year :-( ....So I knew all of this going into the relationship with him. I just didn't imagine life could be so difficult financially....
Thankfully this family discussion won't be until we move again into a bigger home. The 2nd bedroom will house all the baby furniture and items that she'll need/use. While I believe the kids should have some kind of space to call their own while they're in our home, they have stuff like a tote or two to signify this and it'll be kept in the shared closet of that 2nd bedroom. They can leave the totes out and put them away before they go to bed. They are only there on alternate weekends. It would be different if they were there full time AND I had some help from their father to get a bigger place to accommodate all of us. Right now he contributes nothing financially, and I have sacrificed a lot already making sure he has plenty of opportunities to see his kids, spend time 1:1 with them, etc.
I don't want to be bitter. I don't even have a nursery for my first born and barely anything is brand new. I am carrying the weight of the finances. The kids have their own bedrooms at their moms. They know what it's like to have their own personal space. The living room is going to be their temporary bedroom while they visit, and it's going to look like a living room again after their stays.
I appreciate all the input I receive on here because I have a better, balanced view of what could be overlooked. We'll see how that discussion goes when it's time.