Post # 31
summerpeach : Did they wait until they were 40+? Otherwise, I think you may be using anecdotal evidence to scare people into trying while younger.
Fertility doesn’t significant decline until late 30s. Even at 35, you have a good chance of conceiving with a year if you don’t have other fertility issues. The reality is, if you have fertility issues, you sadly will struggle when you are younger or older. Sure, being younger gives you more time to figure things out, but until you start trying, you don’t know.
Also, 85% of couples will conceived naturally on their own, without intervention within a year. So a lot of people worry about fertility issues when they really shouldn’t.
Post # 32
thesoontobemrsv : I agree with PP that there’s a middle gound between ideal and struggling, and it’s important to think about where you would actually fall on that spectrum. Darling Husband and I rent a small townhouse, are both students with small incomes, have a pretty good amount of student loans from previous degrees that will need to be paid back once we graduate, and live on a fairly tight budget, so in that way our circumstances are less than ideal. However, we do have a decent amount of savings to cover living expenses for a couple of months, enough money to buy the things we need for a newborn (though many generous friends and family have bought us things so we’re actually able to save most of that money), good medical care, and the flexibility in our schedules to go without daycare for at least the first year.
It’s really important to think at least about how you would pay for out of pocket medical expenses for both pregnancy and birth, setting up for an infant, and the first few years of expenses including formula, diapers, and daycare. I’m 29 weeks now and have already been in the hospital 4 times for complications and testing, which would cost a fortune under my previous insurance (we live in Canada now so it’s covered). And there’s a high chance we’ll end up delivering early and need the NICU, which is also thousands of dollars out of pocket under many insurances in the US. You can never know what will happen, so having some kind of backup financial plan is necessary. Same with diapers, daycare, formula if you need it (and you won’t necessarily know that until baby is born). Those things are ridiculously expensive and you can’t really go without.
You don’t need to own a home, have a massive savings, own your car(s), or be able to buy brand new name brand everything for baby, but there is a huge difference between comfortable/middling and struggling. Darling Husband and I are able to buy things we need for the baby as we find them and seek appropriate medical care as necessary, but I have friends who recently had a baby that couldn’t afford anything at all. It’s very hard on them and the baby, and my friend has PPD and needs a postpartum glucose test because of gestational diabetes, but can’t afford to see a doctor for even basic care. It’s not at all romantic to struggle like that, and it will be really hard on you and your future kids. Waiting a year or two to get your feet under you is worth it in the long run.
Post # 33
thesoontobemrsv : You keep saying how ready your are. I think you said it four times in your post. You also say you want a couple years just the two of you, it’s isnt actually a good time, and you never in a million years thought you’d want to be a mother in your 20s. But you feel ready. Um, ok? Parenthood is stressful. Wonderful, but exhausting and draining and difficult and a huge (understatement!) responsibility. Having your shit together as much as possible before throwing a grenade into your life and your relationship is advisable. You don’t need to own a mansion and have one billion dollars in savings. But you should have some stability and a decent plan in place. If waiting a few years (which it sounds like you should do anyway) eneables you to be in a better position to be parents I don’t see why you wouldn’t. It’s the right thing to do.
Post # 34
erikamin : Maybe you want a child really young so you can grow up together (did I really read that right!?) but what about the needs of the child? In my experience (I’ve worked with kids for 15 years and have two of my own), kids need an ADULT to care for them. Not a young person who is struggling. They need to feel safe and secure. I don’t think it’s fair to burden a child with adult stresses and responsibilities just because you romanticize young parenthood. Being a good parent often means putting your child’s legitimate needs before your own desires.
Post # 35
We are on the fence having kids at all,we do have a lot of time to decide though should we agree to do so. What I will say is that it is fun to fantasize about having a baby BUT the reality stings. You can never be too prepared at this point in time. I would be worried more about a difficult pregnancy/delivery or having complications any time after postpartum; financial,health,relationship or otherwise as pps have stated. My biggest concern would be having a special needs child which is much more expensive, if we agree to kids and ttc, the genetic testing alone is over 10k and that’s just one test we’d have to pay for out of pocket since our insurance most likely won’t cover it. (Side note; Fiance has a family genetic mutation that could be possibly be passed on and has been-for this reason his cousin will not have children because of the stronger possibility of his children having that condition and knowing all the stuff he went through with his sister-he would not choose to go through it again willingly)
but take my opinion with a grain of salt, only you know your situation and good luck to you bee!
Post # 36
- Wedding: December 2014 - Maui
My mother was in pretty much the least ideal situation you could think of when she had my older brother and me. Born with a physical disability that doctors didn’t understand, high school education only, married to an abusive alcoholic, my brother was born with the same disability as my mom but worse (needed physical therapy and was in a wheelchair until he was 8), then I was born and she kicked my father out to protect us from him. Single mother with two young kids, started babysitting kids in the neighborhood from our house because working minimum wage and sending us to day care would have eaten her entire paycheck. When we were old enough to go to school and she finally started working outside the home and working on being certified to run a daycare, she got hit by a car and her injuries made her unable to work for life. We lived off food stamps and my mom and brother’s disability payments. We were barely surviving, pretty much one step above being homeless.
But, did my brother or I notice? No, not really. We still had birthday cake and presents, we still had a Christmas tree and dinner with the trimmings, we took walks, played outside, got second hand toys, went to the zoo, aquarium, parks, etc. I’d say we had a pretty happy childhood given the circumstances. The material things, after school lessons, sports teams, expensive trips, etc. are all nice, but I think what’s really important is the love you give your children. My mom gave us plenty of love, she was always there for us, always supported us, always taught us. So I’m very thankful for the way she raised me and I wouldn’t change any of it. I think it is a basic human right to be able to experience the joy of parenthood if one really wants to, no matter their circumstances. Of course it’s good to plan and save, but only you know if you’re really ready. Best of luck to you.
Post # 37
bee, I am very glad you had such a good childhood given such difficult circumstances.
But ask your mom if she would suggest anyone to willingly go through the rough life that she had.
And I’m sorry, parenthood isn’t a right to be experienced by anyone who wants to be a parent regardless of circumstances. You have to be able to provide for a child.
I’m happy that your mom made it work, but in today’s environment in the US, I would be sick with fear because they try all the time to take away any and all assistance given to kids and families.
Post # 38
- Wedding: December 2014 - Maui
Sansa85 : My mom has said plenty of times that we were both planned pregnancies, so I guess she willingly went through with it. She also has said that we were the only things keeping her going through life, so we obviously gave her a lot of joy and love as well. Just because someone is poor doesn’t mean they are necessarily unable to provide. There’s so many more important things for parents to provide than money and material things. And I think poor people deserve love and happiness, too.
But you’re probably right about the US now. My mom raised us in the 80s-90s, it was probably different then and I know she got some government assistance. I wouldn’t want to give birth in Trump’s America no matter what, so I’m glad I’m not living there now.
Post # 39
- Wedding: April 2016 - Manhattan, NY
thesoontobemrsv : They say that when the time is right, you just know! I had this whole vision for what I wanted our life to be like at this point. It did not include being in our current house in our current city, which we’ll likely be in for a couple more years if not more. I like our house, but it was a big compromise for me. We live in the city, which is convenient because it’s close to my job and fun for summers because we can walk to all of the festivals and enjoy the restaurants and boutiques, but our house is not ideal for raising a family. City school districts suck, we live on the second level of our home (it’s a double and we rent out the lower apartment) so that’s a lot of stairs for lugging a baby and groceries and everything else. We don’t have a fenced in yard and worry about the street traffic and odd passersby.
With all of that said, I’m happy that we’ve waited to start trying until we did some of the things that were important to us. I knew that I wanted to be married for a couple of years first. We will begin trying (or at least not preventing) in May when we go on a European vacation celebrating our second anniversary. Going to Europe was something I always wanted to do and it was important for me to be able to enjoy one more big trip before we become parents. Not that we’ll stop traveling once we have children, but I wanted this for us. Waiting has also allowed us to set aside money for my maternity leave and all of the costs that are to come (medical, childcare, etc.) and that gives me some peace of mind. Even though my hormones are telling me that I want a baby right now, I feel better about sticking to my plan. I wish you and your husband the best as you move forward with your plans 🙂
Post # 40
thesoontobemrsv : financially speaking how “unready” are we talking? It’s not realistic to expect that every single person that has a child owns a home, is actively maxing out their retirement accounts, and still has cash leftover to pay for exotic vacations every year. HOWEVER. Can you afford infant childcare in your area (I’m about to start paying $415/week for my babe – it ain’t cheap)? Can you afford to live on one salary if one of you decides to stay home? Assume you will need formula in your math just in case breastfeeding doesn’t work out (I spent a lot of money on getting breastfeeding to work after a rocky start and we still needed to formula supplement for a few weeks until my supply finally came in). How much will your health insurance premium go up? Will you have to cover unpaid time off for your maternity leave? Do you have life insurance?
I think when you’re ready, you’re ready, and that’s great. But just run the math to make sure you can swing it without going into debt or poverty.
Post # 41
I also agree that you don’t need to own a house, be maxing out your retirements, and have $30k+ in your checking/savings. But before you TTC on purpose you need to sit down a do a budget and figure out if you can actually make it work. Do you have free (or super cheap) childcare from a relative? What happens if they decide they don’t want to do it any more? How much is daycare in the area? How much will your insurance premiums go up? Do you have room for extra medical expenses (how much will the birth cost? how much are your copays?)? You need a budget line for clothing, food, and eventually activities. There will always be medical expenses. We got lucky with my first (not in daycare until 18mo) who really didn’t need more than the well checks until 1.5 but my second was in daycare earlier so I probably spent hundreds in $25 co pays for sick visits plus $250 ER trip for croup. My 3 year old broke her arm and there was $700 in a month. Otherwise, perfectly healthy kids. What if one of them had a disability or ongoing medical needs? It would be a lot more. Our infant care is $275/wk which is fairly reasonable and the only places I see lower are more rural areas (I am in the midwest). Even if one of you stays home, you now have lost wages and need to be able to live on one income.
If you’re still in your 20s, you have plenty of time. If you’re already super tight financially you still have a lot of time to get things in order or get better paying jobs before you TTC. Don’t rush it. Don’t purposefully put yourselves and your child in a bad situation. Being ready to be a parent means you cannot be selfish anymore, and that starts with making sure you are in the best situation possible before you TTC. Especially since you are in your 20s. Now if you can run budget numbers (real numbers, call daycares to get infant pricing) and can live comfortably then you’re probably fine. So my best advice would be to come up with a budget based on actual numbers and see if you’re financially capable right now.
Post # 42
there is never enough time, money, or space.
i don’t think it is still on the air, but check out the tv show, the jim gaffigan show. it is about him raising 5 kids in a 2 bedroom apartment, based on his real life.
Post # 43
kes18 : I didn’t even remember the cost of the actual birth! I know some people that spent thousands (luckily we had met our deductible for the year with IVF treatments so ours was only a $275 copay).
OP one thing I did when we started TTC was “paying” infant daycare to our savings account. It got us used to the expense and it built up our savings so I was able to take an extended maternity leave which was mostly unpaid. I can’t imagine going back to work in 12 weeks or less. I took 5 months and I wouldn’t trade that time for all the money in the world.
Post # 44
LilliV : I spent about $3k out of pocket for each birth I had. Standard vaginal birth (one was induced) and I have a standard PPO with 20% coinsurance. My deductible was either $500 or $1k (one of each). In fact, I spent a bit more on my spontaneous delivery because I had to go to L&D which was billed as an ER copay and my insurance refused to cover the amnisure test they gave me. Most of my cost was the coinsurance on the hospital stay- around $1800 each time? Rest was the dedictible and my OB fee was only maybe $300 each time. $100 for each epidural…totally worth it though haha.
My work does not have an HSA so we just have the standard FSA and that maxes out for one year around $2500 so I did max that out for the upcoming year a few months before I gave birth to our second.
Granted it’s a one time expenses (birth) but it can still be pricey depending on your insurance. My OOP max is $4k so I didn’t quite get there.
Post # 45
My little sister and I are employed at the same place, so we have the same insurance plan (that sounds confusing, we have the same plan but paid individually, obviously). She told me that her out of pocket for her c-section was $5k, so I kept in mind that I had to have that much in savings, at the very very least, on top of a few month’s expenses. On top of that, I wanted to make sure that we had enough to pay for daycare and save a bit each month. Once we got to that point, we were ready to start trying.
I hate this theory of everything will work out. Sometimes it doesn’t just work out. Sure, we don’t max out our retirement contributions and we don’t have $30k in the bank, but we do have something. Also, I wasn’t worried about TTC in my 30s. I started at the end of 31 and I’m now 32 years old and almost 28 weeks pregnant.