Friday, June 22, 2007

Lifestyle for kids...

Interesting on the LLNOE board I read, a woman asked the question should she wait to have kids (she's only 27), or should she just move forward while still in debt? I wonder about this too? We're not hugely in debt, and it's student loans and a mortgage. BUT I worry about money and time.

She got many differing responses about her situation. Most were suggesting she go ahead and not worry about money. Because children are only as expensive as you allow them to be. However a few did suggest waiting because she had over $100k in non-mortgage debt. The woman said it would take over 5 year to pay off this debt, so she was wondering if they should wait to have children. But they were able to pay their bills and "snowball" still debt now so they were not on that tight a budget. And they have childcare lined up with her mother-in-law.

However one opinion, which I really liked said, there is no wrong or right decision about kids. However picture yourself 5 years from now raising kids. How would you like to be raising your children? With a tight financial situation or less constrained? Would you like to have a choice to stay at home or be forced to work? Would you like new clothes or used clothes for your kid? Do you want a bigger or smaller home? Will it affect the number of children you have?

The woman who wrote this said that there is no right or wrong answer. Each person's decision is personal. And you and your spouse need to sit and decide HOW you want to raise your children. What it is you want to be able to provide, and if there will be financial stresses in life? She said she never thought she'd ever advocate not having children, but as a parent now, she believes that people should think before they leap. They should consider what they want.

The woman said if she could go back she would have waited just because she has a lot of financial stress impacting her marriage and children. It's hard for her because she finds it difficult. How she's raising her kids is not how she pictured raising them. And that is what is most important. How you want to raise your children.

This is something I wrestle with. I think if we just did the deed now, we'd manage for sure. We'd become extra frugal and really live to the bone. But we'd make it for sure. BUT if we waited we'd need to be less frugal and definitely not worry about money. Right now the decision for DH, not me, is to wait. He can't deal very well with financial uncertainty and says if we had a kid he couldn't sleep. He'd be worried about our bills, our student loans, our future. And though I think we'd swing it, I think though he's a risk taker in some areas of our lives, otherwise he has very set ideas about what we'd provide for our children and have as a financial base. And that image can't be accomplished if we had kids now. So I guess though it's possible, the ideas of family DH should be meet first.

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