I'm curious if the economy is affecting your desire to have children or have another if you have a kid or two now. I admit it does bother me (I have one). It didn't until today on NPR - basically the message that things are bad but will get far worse.
Childcare is expensive - I don't mind it part time but full time...not as excited about that. That assumes you have a job or a decent income or it's not even worth it.
Not sure who to believe - the pessimists or the optimists - or how to weather if it gets much worse. All this makes me wonder if it's a good time to have children. How about you?
In a perfect world, the economy wouldn't play a part in family-planning, however reality sets in fast when you have a deficit in health insurance coverage, gas is ridiculous (or was two weeks ago and will soon be again), and more parents are finding they can't stay at home if they want to. I have two children, a boy and a girl, and while I haven't planned on more, in another economy you might find me trying to convince my hubby to give in to my baby fever. As it is, I'm happy with what I have and am not going to push for more... and that's about 80% because of the state of our nation's financial woes right now.
Well, I have six kids and am pregnant with #7. I have never really thought about the economy affecting our family size. I have stayed at home for almost all of the time we have had kids (I worked a part time job at the church for about 6 months, more to help out than to earn money). I couldn't imagine what childcare costs would be for our family, I am sure outrageous. My husband is the military so we few health care expenses. Yes, it is expensive to fill up our gas guzzling vehicle, but I can't imagine our family without the children we have.
We have lived significantly below our means for the past 9 years, and it has really paid off. We are putting away money for the kids' college and our retirement. Anyway, I have more concerns about terrorism affecting my children than I do about the economy.
Just my $0.02 Toni
I have just one child also, and I'm currently going through a baby fever. But I feel I can't responsibly consider having another baby at this point in time. It feels reckless when things are already so difficult.
I'm not as concerned for our family now, but I do wonder about the kind of world our kids will grow up in. I fear people/companies who need to learn from this crisis will not, because the government will bail them out. In the end I think it's worse to prop up failing industries and ways of doing things, so people stay delusional that buying lots of things and having a huge house stuffed full of crap will make them happy. We live in a small apartment and try to be frugal and leave a modest footprint on the world. It's not so bad to not be rich. Anyway, we are going to stop at two (wonderful boys :) so we can continue to live within our means, and also have money left over for things my parents could never afford, like vacations and private education if needed.
As a mama of five (number 6 on the way) my experience is that kids are as expensive as you make them, to a certain degree. Sure daycare can be expensive, but when you get to a certain number it is much cheaper to get a nanny so my daycare costs won't increase with this baby. I get more bang for my buck because I have been able to get so much use out of all my baby gear (and maternity clothes. ha!)
I homebirth, work at home, breastfeed exclusively for 6 months and beyond and use elimination communication. I also cosleep and babywear. So when you take out hospital costs (unless there is an emergency), formula, bottles, diapers, laundry, cribs, strollers and daycare, kids do not really cost that much. All you need is some clothes, a carseat and the ability to say "no" to toys. :)