Hello!  I’m on my way to the Grand Canyon today.  Mrs. Money over at the Ultimate Money Blog has been kind enough to send a guest post my way.  Great thanks to her and make sure you check out her blog.  It’s definitely worth the read.

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I always thought I would have children before I turned 25. Now that age is getting much closer and it doesn’t look like there will be any children in our very near future. I’ll be honest- I’m a little sad, but not nearly as upset as I thought I would be. While children are a blessing, they are also a lot of work, and I just am not ready for that responsibility yet. With the economy in its current edition, that plays heavy on my mind every day. I go back and forth on whether now (or ever!) is the right time to have a baby.

I am honestly afraid to bring a child into this world with the economy the way it is right now. I know things will never be perfect, but with all the turmoil in the world today, I am really apprehensive about choosing to get pregnant now. What if I lost my job while I was pregnant? What if we weren’t able to make our mortgage payment and bills? I would feel guilty for choosing to have a child and then not able to afford it. What type of a parent does that make me? I want to know that when we do decide to have children that we can 100% afford them. Now, many people tell me that I will never be able to afford a child, and if I wait until then that I won’t ever have kids. I just want to be a little more financially stable.

Kids are so expensive. Sometimes I think about not having kids just because of all the money we’d save. I know it sounds horrible, but I’m being honest here! I know that with all the expenses going out for bills, and then to add a child or two on top of that, it would be a lot more money going out each month! If we didn’t have kids, we would be able to pay off more debt, save more money, and live a more extravagant life. By “extravagant” I mean less strapped for cash. Diapers, clothing, cribs… the list goes on an on. Kids are really expensive!

If we didn’t have children, our lives wouldn’t be as stressful as if we did. Right now we have two Labrador retrievers that are like our children. Sometimes they are so naughty I can feel my blood pressure rise! I can only imagine the stress children would bring to daily life. With myself and my husband both being in management, we lead stressful professional lives. Why add more stress onto our daily routines and onto our marriage as well if we could choose not to?

If we don’t have children, I think I will always wish that I did. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life wondering how it would be if we had children. I don’t want to grow old and then resent my choice to be child free. I know a couple that tried and tried to have a baby, and after a few years they gave up. She didn’t want to undergo any more fertility treatments, and they chose not to adopt. Now she wishes she had gone the extra step. I don’t want to be like that, but I also don’t want to resent the choice to have a baby.

It’s such a hard choice, and one that cannot be taken lightly. I think this is the biggest decision anyone can make in their life. Being responsible for another human being is the ultimate responsibility. While it may be good when it comes to tax time, I’m also being realistic and will be as sure as I possibly can when it comes down to the wire. Does (or did) money affect your decision to have a child?

Ashley here:  I think it’s impossible to make the decision to have kids with a rational mind.  It’s not a rational decision.  There is NO reason to have kids if you are going to sit down and make pros and cons list.  I can’t think of any pros.  Less money, less time, less sleep, more stress, more chaos, more responsibility.  But to me, it’s what life is all about.  Life isn’t about how much money you have when you die, how many fancy vacations you took, or what kind of car is parked in front of your big house.  It’s about loving, giving, having a family, growing, learning, and experiencing.  And having kids gives you all those things in a way that money never will.  I couldn’t live my life without ever seeing my child on Christmas morning, or watching those first wobbly steps, or waking up at 2 am to clean puke off the rug.  (Ok, maybe I could do without that last one.)

pic by: peasap

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