Starting a family is a big step for any couple, and it deserves due consideration before taking the leap. Before you embark on one of the most significant adventures life has to offer, consider these five key questions.
Can you afford it?
Starting a family is a very personal decision, but it’s certainly wise to think of the practicalities. Pregnancy alone comes with a whole host of medical costs, required time off work, and that’s before the child even arrives. In the United States, the overall cost of raising a child comes to an average of $12,980 USD a year, based on the average middle-income family. This cost totals $233,610 to raise a child to the age of 17, including housing costs, clothing, food, and so on. That’s a tremendous amount of money that you need to consider when starting a family.
If money is tight for you, think about getting this under control before you try for a child. Tools like MoneyGains can help you get there, so your dream of having a family won’t be too far away. For instance, you can compare your electricity prices and see if there is money that could be saved each month just from doing a little bit of research with MoneyGains. Saving money where you can will make a huge difference if you wish to start a family.
Would kids suit your lifestyle right now?
We often have an idyllic image of kids, but the reality can be much different. Think about the lifestyle you live right now: is there room for a child? If not, are you ready to give up certain activities, levels of independence, and more to make room for one? Once you decide to have a child, you’re in it for the long haul. You might not get time to yourself for several years, so if there are still points left to be ticked off on your bucket list, it may be best to achieve those goals first.
How strong is your relationship?
Parenthood comes with its own set of struggles and bumps in the road. From the very beginning, there could be issues between you and your partner when it comes to reproductive health, cost of treatment, and your respective fertility success rates. This is a good time to really dive deep into your relationship and any past fights you’ve had.
Try to resolve any long-standing disagreements now and facilitate truly honest conversations about how you want to raise a child. Disagreements now could really affect your future child, so it’s wise to at least have an idea of what could affect your parental relationship in the future.
Are you ready for any potential obstacles along the way?
Many hopeful parents dive into the process full of optimism— and you should, it’s an exciting step! But you should also have a measure of realism and understand that the process may not be perfect. Infertility is a more common problem than many people might think. Even the best IVF doctor in Los Angeles notes that difficulties can arise with women as young as age 35. There are a whole host of other factors at play here that can lead to the need for fertility treatment or the risk of miscarriage, along with health concerns like polycystic ovarian syndrome and more. Be sure that you are ready to face the good as well as the bad with your partner before you embark on this journey.
Where are you at in your personal life journey?
In broader terms, does having a child now fit into your greater life plan? Are you where you expected yourself to be this time last year? Have your aims and goals changed, and does having a family still fit into that? you need to make sure that you are having a child because it’s right for you at this moment, not because it’s something you decided for yourself years ago or something that you had decided for you by someone else.