I'm sure someone, somewhere, has done a study about the happiness level of large vs small families. I don't have time to research it, so we'll just have to rely on my paltry observations. There are many families in our area of North Idaho that consist of anywhere from five to twelve children. I'm personally acquainted with at least thirty to forty such families. In every single case, the children are well adjusted and the mothers happy and healthy.
One lady I work with is in her late seventies (early eighties?) and has twelve kids. One of her daughters has ten and another has eight. I'm pretty sure the remaining ten kids also have fairly large families. You would be hard pressed to find a more lovely group of ladies (who also happen to have great figures.)
A blog I follow, Parisienne Farmgirl, just had her fifth baby after thinking the fourth one could have been her last. The joy of the new baby (born at home) shared by her husband and other children is palpable. I swiped this pic from her blog and I hope she'll forgive me.
I guess the real question is when did having an over-sized and overpriced house, a $40,000.00 SUV (or two), and fancy doodads become a substitute for children?