"You're *NEVER* financially ready for children"

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TheDoctor82
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05 Sep 2011, 11:01 pm

I've heard many folks say this over time, and several co-workers said it again to me earlier tonight.


I decided then....to get them to elaborate; and they totally couldn't.

One of them said "even when you don't think you can do things for your kids, you find ways"

The way I see it is like this: right now, I'm pretty much broke. I couldn't even afford to buy a pet guinea pig, if I wanted to. I'm honest about it; I'm not gonna knock up my gal without thinking about the financial consequences of doing so, and that's especially right now.

So, what is meant by that saying? Could someone--anyone--elaborate?



Zen
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05 Sep 2011, 11:53 pm

Maybe they mean that no matter how much money you have, kids always make you broke?

Or maybe it's just an excuse people use to justify the fact that they had kids they couldn't afford.



TheDoctor82
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05 Sep 2011, 11:57 pm

Zen wrote:
Maybe they mean that no matter how much money you have, kids always make you broke?

Or maybe it's just an excuse people use to justify the fact that they had kids they couldn't afford.




If it's the former, how do kids always make ya broke?

That's why my money's on the latter.



Franma
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06 Sep 2011, 12:24 am

When people say this they mean a whole bunch of things

Mostly - Don't wait forever, the circumstances will never be perfect.

Partly - Having kids is full of bumps in the road and you can't plan for all of the things that could happen

Partly - Being a parent forces you to figure out how to do what you have to do to get what your kids need. Sometimes this means not telling your boss off because your kids need to eat, sometimes it means selling lots of chocolate bars so they can play soccer, it could mean lots of different situations. Most parents would do without themselves to see that their children get what they need.

I don't think they are trying to justify having kids you can't afford, just encouraging you to not overplan.

IMHO - I would need at least a decent paying steady job, health insurance and a little in the bank as a dead minimum for starting a new family. That would give you some resiliency for life's little emergencies.


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TheDoctor82
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06 Sep 2011, 12:40 am

Franma wrote:
When people say this they mean a whole bunch of things

Mostly - Don't wait forever, the circumstances will never be perfect.

Partly - Having kids is full of bumps in the road and you can't plan for all of the things that could happen

Partly - Being a parent forces you to figure out how to do what you have to do to get what your kids need. Sometimes this means not telling your boss off because your kids need to eat, sometimes it means selling lots of chocolate bars so they can play soccer, it could mean lots of different situations. Most parents would do without themselves to see that their children get what they need.

I don't think they are trying to justify having kids you can't afford, just encouraging you to not overplan.

IMHO - I would need at least a decent paying steady job, health insurance and a little in the bank as a dead minimum for starting a new family. That would give you some resiliency for life's little emergencies.



Well....all of that totally makes sense to me, and I pretty much already figured that anyway.

Look.....I'm hoping to be very financially well off in time. But I sure don't expect to hit the jackpot for at least another 10-15 years at the bare minimum. If I can at least make it to the lower-middle class by the time I have kids, steadily rising to hit upper-middle, then further up to upper class, that's fine.

I figure I won't be makin' the big bucks til my '50s or '60s anyway; but as long as my woman and I aren't financially struggling beyond words like my Mom and Dad were even before they had me, I can live with that for now.


Considering though that most folks who give me the line all the time with no further elaboration, I don't think they've thought any of it thru though to the detail that you've explained it; that might be another reason they say what they do: they didn't think before doing it, and assume no one else will either.



nemorosa
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06 Sep 2011, 1:53 am

Though I agree with Franma there is another possibility: That people are repeating to you what they have heard without giving it any thought whatsoever. I've observed people doing this all the time. It's amazing what people will regurgitate not knowing the meaning of what it is they say.



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06 Sep 2011, 2:55 am

I don't think this is a recommendation to people on the breadline to procreate.


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ooOoOoOAnaOoOoOoo
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06 Sep 2011, 3:03 am

What means is when people know a couple has kids, they are more willing to be helpful. An example would be a boss giving an employee a raise when the first child is due. It's because people become aware you aren't just working for yourself. You have a family to support.



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06 Sep 2011, 3:38 am

My guess is even if you are financially ready for kids, s**t can happen in the future and you are broke. You lose your job lets say and you have no money. So you end up needing government assistance. Or let's say you get divorced or separated or your husband/wife. So therefore you aren't financially stable as you were before.

Also if you wait forever to have kids and you saved up to $50,000 so you can have kids, you be too old by then to have kids. Plus it costs a lot more than that to raise a child until they are 18 and that is about $220,000. I have seen people say online people should save up to have kids but I think that is absurd or they will never have kids because then they be too old by then.

How do kids make you broke? Well these days kids are spoiled and parents can't even say no to their kids so they get whatever they want. Always things they don't even need like junk food or desserts or a new toy. Also they don't need cable or every new game system that comes out and video games every time they want a new game. They also don't need cable or internet hook ups in their bedroom or cable elsewhere in the home. if you can't afford it, don't get it, also they don't need cell phones or clothes and shoes they don't even need. I grew up with lot of "No's" and mom only got us what we needed, she didn't load us up with clothes or toys so we wore what we had or played with what we had. Plus if you can't afford it, don't sign them up for it and you don't need to buy books and DVDs every month for the kids. I laughed at that one when it was listed on Babycenter for your monthly bills for raising kids. Even my mom agreed that was silly. There were even spoiled kids in my neighborhood when I was a kid because they had whatever they wanted but they never went anywhere fun. They were stuck at home and never went anywhere for fun.

But if you are that poor, you can still be broke because they need food and clothes and shoes, things they need, plus don't forget about school. I found out that even public schools have registration fees and school supplies cost a lot and a parent can spend up to $200 per kid for school supplies. Plus schools ask for money for field trips and I found out they do rental fees. And doctor appointments, that cost money.



nemorosa
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06 Sep 2011, 4:36 am

League_Girl wrote:
But if you are that poor, you can still be broke because they need food and clothes and shoes


Oh, the shoes! They can grow so fast that sometimes they only wear a pair for a few weeks, and childrens shoes despite the small size still cost about 75% of adult size. I think we may have got through at least 20 pairs between 2 boys over six years.



Franma
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06 Sep 2011, 4:57 am

nemorosa wrote:
Though I agree with Franma there is another possibility: That people are repeating to you what they have heard without giving it any thought whatsoever. I've observed people doing this all the time. It's amazing what people will regurgitate not knowing the meaning of what it is they say.


I agree, some people are just repeating what they were told without thinking. People do that a lot.


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nostromo
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06 Sep 2011, 5:04 am

Wait till some friends have kids first then have yours. My son gets all our friends kids hand me downs and those people are well off and buy loads of nice and well made kids clothes and shoes, so the little guy is dressed better than I ever have been or will be!



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06 Sep 2011, 10:08 am

Quote:
How do kids make you broke? Well these days kids are spoiled and parents can't even say no to their kids so they get whatever they want.


Um, no, very few people are actually stupid enough to drive themselves broke buying toys. Most parents who buy way too many toys for their kids are rich.

Even if you aren't like that, there are many costs to raising children:

* feeding them
* keeping them in clothes that fit (which means new ones often because they grow fast)
* buying school supplies
* paying for childcare
* taking time off work when crises come up, which delays job advancement - or one parent may even quit working altogether, at least for a few years
* repairing damages that children cause, such as when a toddler flushes something down the toilet or decides to start ripping off the wallpaper
* in US paying for medical care, in Canada and US paying for prescriptions (kids get sick more easily)

I think the reason they say you are 'never financially ready for kids' is that if you wait until you're sure you can afford kids you'll be too old to have them. So it's better to just have them based on your hopes of future attainments, and find some way to handle the costs. Plus when you're actually in the situation you'll find ways to handle it that you never thought of before, and end up managing the cost better than you expected. And lastly, kids are so wonderful, they're worth all the stress just to be able to watch this little person grow up and know that you're the most important person in their lives (except for the other parent).

I'm a bit disappointed by what some people here are saying, by the way. Just because someone is poor doesn't mean they shouldn't have kids. There are qualities for parenting a lot more important than whether you have money, and society should give enough support to people with children that the children's needs get met even if the parent is poor. (Personally I think poverty should not even exist - it's disgraceful that a rich and prosperous country can't even keep all of its citizens with a decent standard of living. China does better than US/Canada in this regard.)



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06 Sep 2011, 10:44 am

I think what it means is not that you will go broke, but that you will always end up spending more money on your kids than you think you will. For example, before you have a child, you might have a budget worked out, assuming you will spend this much on shoes, this much on clothes, this much on medical care, but that when the actual child is born, that budget will get blown out of the water because things will happen that you can't predict, and you will just have to go with the flow and figure things out as they come.


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TheygoMew
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06 Sep 2011, 11:12 am

How many people here had rich parents?