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Don’t Have Kids

Posted By Jim On 11/05/2007 @ 9:10 am In Devil's Advocate | 283 Comments

Ever hear someone mention that they don’t want to have kids only to hear, invariably, someone ask “why not?” The reason people ask is because having kids is the norm, actively not having kids is not the norm, and so in this DA post I tackle the reasons I think one would decide against having children. I think this particular post falls into the realm of personal opinion and desires, not “good” or “bad” advice, so it’s slightly different from other DA posts.

Kids Are Expensive and Time Consuming!

The number one reason why having kids is a bad idea is that they are expensive and they require a lot of time (time is money!). Given the cost of a hospital stay, which is almost unavoidable, your upcoming kid is already costing you a lot of money and they haven’t even been introduced to the world yet (Read Connie’s story about how much it costs to have a baby [3]). Afterwards, this little tyke is going to eat a ton, run through clothes like it’s the Running of the Brides at Filene’s Basement’s Bridal Gown Sale, and they’re going to have ridiculously expensive hobbies. That’s before they leave elementary school! As the years go on, they get more and more expensive, culminating in college. College, while not required (see this DA post on why you don’t need college to succeed [4]), is basically the minimum of education demanded by society if you want to make something of yourself (or at least that’s the public perception of what society demands).

Tremendous Responsibility

Once you get the past the money, there is a tremendous amount of responsibility when you’re raising another human being. Not only will they be expensive, but you’ll also feel compelled to spend that money because you want your child to succeed. Marketers will bombard you with advertisements about how your child needs to have the latest learning gadget, or how they need to be in this plan or that plan, or how you can’t buy thing particular product because it’s not as good for you as their product. You’ll have to make these decisions, try to make them independent of cost, and still try to provide what you need for your kid to succeed? It’s like when people say they won’t go to the cheapest person for Lasik even if they’re certified and have done thousands of them, they don’t want something that important to be dependent on price; well, are you going to buy the cheaper cereal or do you not want what your child eats to be dependent on price? What’s more important, your child’s health or your eyes? Do you want to be making those decisions?

Your Life Is On Hold

I can’t imagine having children in my early twenties, but that was the norm many many years ago. Heck, I can’t even imagine having a child now, at the age of 27, when my parents had me. With so many young professionals focused on their careers, it’s very difficult to for someone to put it on hold, if only for a little while. Certainly there are plenty who find it more important to raise a family than it is to generate income but many young professionals want to work, advance in their organizations, and make the big dollars so they can, maybe, relax in their older years. Women are no longer looking to become housewives and I think they shouldn’t have to be compelled to feel that way, just like men don’t often look to becoming stay-at-home dads. So, asking anyone to put their career on hold might be a little unreasonable.

I think those are the main reasons why people wouldn’t want to have kids but to be perfectly honest I don’t know (we want children) for certain because I’ve never broached the subject with anyone. If you’re on the “No kids” side of the argument (or at least “no kids for a few more years”), please do share your thoughts. If you’re on the side, I’d love to hear your opinion about these reasons.


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[1] Tweet: http://twitter.com/share

[2] Email: mailto:?subject=http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/dont-have-kids.html

[3] how much it costs to have a baby: http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/babies-are-expensive-total-cost-of-having-a-baby.html

[4] you don’t need college to succeed: http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/you-dont-need-college-to-succeed.html

Thank you for reading!