Post # 1
As some of you may know, I was a “young-ish bride” – I got married when I was 22 and Darling Husband was 24. We’re now 23 and 25 and coming up on our 1st anniversary (yay!). We kind of enjoyed our first year without toooo much planning for the future but now I am getting a little anxious to make a plan. I am not at all ready to have kids soon but sometimes get the “baby bug” and I want us to be in the position to make it happen when we are ready.
So Darling Husband and I sat down and made a financial plan, and discussed the goals we want to meet before we have a baby. Those goals are: getting out of consumer debt, saving a beefy emergency fund, saving a down payment on a house and being ready to start funding a college account when the baby is born. We mapped these things out and we won’t be in this position for 4 years.
4 years just seems so long from now! I know I will be only 27 and we will have only been married for 5 years. But today for some reason I am just feeling like a year or two from now I might be very ready and kind of resentful of this plan.
Any other bees feel like they have a long way to go before they are “prepared” for a child? Do you think our plan is a good one?
Post # 3
i think it’s great that you’re making strides to be debt free and have savings before there’s a little one on the way! that’s super important as you prepare for your life together!
most important is that you guys are on the same page. don’t be afraid to revisit your plan once a year and adjust as your feelings/situation change. then there’s no resentment because you guys are communicating about wants and needs. and in four years, there can be raises or job losses, yearnings for children or feeling more patient.
also realize that there may be no “best time.” i have lots of plans for our family and i have a good feeling that God’s going to laugh at those plans and the best thing you can do at that point is roll with it!
Post # 4
I don’t think you can ever be prepared for a child. I think it’s smart to wait until you feel comfortable with your financial situation, but something will always happen to make it stressful.
Post # 5
I am a huge fan of not carrying debt and I believe in living on a budget. What I want to stress is to remember is that you cannot fool mother nature. If you two are on the same page about waiting, I would like to make a friendly suggestion that you meet with your ob/gyn to discuss your fertility. Many women think they can wait and then when they are ready to start, they find out they have problems. Meeting with your doctor and being realistic with your partner about your agreed timeline will allow you to be at peace with your decision.
Try not to laugh but I am 41. I’ve wanted to have kids since I was 26 but I didn’t have a partner nor did I have any money. You can always make more money but you can’t always make a baby.
Post # 6
I agree wholeheartedly.
I applaud couples who set out a “5 year plan” for starting a family to make sure they are financially and emotionally ready. But sometimes life happens. And you know what? Your child WILL be fine if you can not start a college fund for them the day they are born. They WILL be fine if you do not have enough money for a big family vacation every year.
Recent life events have prompted my husband and I to move our TTC plans up significantly. Like you we also had items a, b, c, and d on our list of things to do before having a child. At the end of the day for us we decided starting a family was more important than a, b, c, and d.
Granted I am assuming you are both in stable full time jobs making average money and are emotionally and financially able to support a baby day to day and enough savings for a rainy day.
If we were not already in that situation then we would have worked triple as hard to make that happen still to move up TTC plans.
Again, I think this is a personal decision for each couple. And if you and your husband feel this plan is best for you then stick to it. If it feels to far to bear then make those saving plans more aggressive.
I hope that made sense.
Post # 7
Saving takes time. I think what you guys laid out was responsible. In my circle, people don’t have kids before 30, so 27 is even rushing it ;-). You may be surprised by how much your mid-20s throws your way, and all the changes that happen. It won’t feel like 4 years, for sure!
Post # 8
You guys have a great plan! I also married young, 20, and im already expecting,will be 22 when we have our baby, hubby will be 24. We love kids, and know we are ready to start a family. Of course, we are not 100% ready financially, but no one ever is!! Its about how ready you feel, if you wait for the perfect time, it will never happen. My advice is: stick to your plan, take it day by day, you guys will know when you are ready, even if it means ignoring some plans and just going for it!
Post # 9
We got pregnant within our first year of marriage and while we were lucky we weren’t in any debt we certainly don’t have the cash flow we would like right now. Everything about this pregnancy has been expensive and we have been very cheap about all purchases and medically things have gone smoothly. I can’t imagine where we would be if I needed even more than the routine medical treatment or if we wanted to splurge on baby gear.
Post # 10
i think you’re plan is a great one, but i would echo PPs that the most important part is that you and your hubby are on the same page. getting out of debt and having some sort of emergency fund (1-2 months income) before having a baby is a really fabulous idea — feeling at least somewhat financially comfortable will make money one less thing to think about! but like others said, i don’t think anyone can ever be 100% prepared to have their first baby. you can never save enough money or feel be ready for every situation cause you just don’t ever know what to really expect.
i say, if you and your hubby think 4 years is too long to wait, chop it in half and do what you can in 2 years! even after the baby comes you can still be financially responsible (e.g., starting a college fund and saving small amounts here and there for a house).
Post # 11
We were planning to go off the Pill next month (a year after marriage) but my Darling Husband feels that we need to pay down our debt before we start TTC. I will be 31 in a couple months, so it’s hard to swallow the fact that I will most likely be 32 when we have our first baby. I have friends who are done having kids! But at the same time, how he feels is just as important. He is willing to compromise by assessing our situation every couple of months, and I appreciate that. We’ve also overhauled our budget. Maybe you could come to a similar plan.
Post # 12
Oh man. I remember feeling the same way. We married in 2009 and I got a BAD case of baby fever right after. We decided on a tentative TTC start date of 2012 and it felt SO far away. I was sure there was no way I could make it that long and was pissed we couldn’t save faster. Now 2012 is next year and the crazy baby fever has passed. I still want to start then because of my age but now I’m thinking, holy sh*t will we be ready in a year?!
Anyways, moral of the story. I’ve totally been there and it sucks but hang in there. 4 years is a long time and a lot can change, even your baby fever. 😉
Post # 13
Well maybe only 3 years away – it takes almost a year for a baby to grow inside of you!!! Maybe that might cheer you up a bit (thats what I always tell myself when I think about when we will be able to afford our second in a couple years)
Post # 14
I know it’s tough but you are doing it for a reason! I’m about to be 24 and I don’t think we are going to be ‘ready’ for a while. I think I’m about to make another career change and since I don’t think I want to be a stay at home mother, I will need to stay in that field for a while before even considering children.
Post # 15
I think your plan is great. Stick to it. You’re still so young. You’ve got plenty of time to be a mother. For now, enjoy being a wife and spending tons of quality time with your hubby.
Post # 16
Thanks for all your support and wisdom, ladies! It really puts things in perspective. I think I was just having an emotional day because just a few days later, it isn’t really bothering me nearly as much! It’s so strange how this “baby fever” just comes and goes so randomly!