In the festive spirit of Valentine’s Day, Maci Bookout of Teen Mom OG posted a special announcement to her Instagram feed. Bookout, 24, and her fiancé, Taylor McKinney, are expecting another baby — the third child for Bookout and the couple’s second child together.
Bookout, who appeared on the first season of MTV’s Teen Mom way back in 2009, could not be happier — or more surprised — by her little bundle on the way. Bookout confirmed to MTV News that her third pregnancy was a surprise, also hinting that this baby would be her last with the use of the Instagram hashtag #lastbutnotleast. Bookout said the unplanned pregnancy was discovered right after she got engaged to McKinney last month, Bookout’s boyfriend of more than three years and father to their 8-month-old daughter, Jayde Carter. Bookout also has a 7-year-old son, Bentley, with her ex-boyfriend Ryan Edwards, as seen in the MTV Teen Mom series.
Surprise pregnancies are nothing new. Many of us have been there before, and the Guttmacher Institute confirms that roughly half, or 51 percent, of the 6.6 million pregnancies in the U.S. each year are unplanned. But what makes Bookout’s pregnancy so darn interesting (and so darn exciting for her family) is that baby No. 2 and baby No. 3 will be very close in age. Bookout is due with her third child, a boy, on May 30, and her daughter Jayde was born on May 29 of the previous year.
Since Bookout went into labor early with both of her previous children, there’s every chance that she could have two kids under 1 year old in her house. Coming from moms of toddlers who have been there before, we wish her the best of luck — and a few good nights of rest before the fun begins.
When it comes to expanding her little family, Bookout is in good company. We’ve seen more than a few Teen Mom alums add to their families after their season aired — Tyler Baltierra and Catelynn Lowell recently had a baby girl, Leah Messer is a proud mom of three, and even Farrah Abraham hopes to give her daughter a sibling through adoption.
Bookout’s situation is unique in that she’s not only going to have two small children close in age to wrangle, but she and her fiancé are going to be officially outnumbered. While many parents love having multiple children, and a great many kids love growing up in big families, studies show that having a third child tips the balance and can even place a strain on a relationship. In a 2013 Today survey of more than 7,000 moms in the U.S., mothers of three children were found to be the most stressed.
But for parents like Bookout with baby No. 3 on the way, the outlook isn’t necessarily bleak. The research for a third child might point to stress, which simply means that parents of three have to be more prepared to deal with the bumps along the way. And for the parents who are ready to take the ride, the rewards are great. Moms of three still swear that their family came out stronger after making the (rough) transition.
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We’re rooting for Bookout and her growing brood. While it’s not easy having three small kids under one roof, there’s plenty to look forward to. If Bookout’s relationship with her children on Teen Mom is any indication, she has more than enough love to go around.