Monday, March 7, 2011

You need to read this..."Kids Just Aren't Worth it"

I ran across this article and was shocked, so I thought I'd share it here to get your feedback on it...can you believe the author calls children "economically worthless"?!  Taken from

Kids just aren’t worth it 
posted: 03/07/2011, 10:01 am
I hate to be the bearer of bad news here, folks, but it turns out that kids aren’t worth it after all. According to a new study published in the Journal of Psychological Science, our little cherubs aren’t so much a joy as they are a big old financial burden.

Gone are the days when kids used to work on the farm and such, benefiting the family finances. Instead, parents shell out big bucks to raise a child – $190,000 over 18 years, according to one recent estimate – and get little reward in return. Researchers at the University of Waterloo have found that, faced with the overwhelming expense of parenting, we tend to overstate the joys of having children in order to make ourselves feel better about the decision.

The result? “The economically worthless but emotionally priceless child,” to borrow a phrase from Princeton sociologist Viviana Zelizer.

“Many people believe that to be truly fulfilled in life, it is necessary to experience the joys of parenthood. Children are considered an essential source of happiness, satisfaction, and pride,” write professors Richard Eibach and Steven Mock. “However, the idea that parenthood involves substantial emotional rewards appears to be something of a myth.”

“The costs of raising children motivate parents to idealize parenthood,” they continue. “The perceived joys of parenthood may thus be a rationalization of the high costs of having children.”

I can’t argue with the fact that kids can cost a bunch. From diapers to child care to food and shelter, the expenses do add up. But it’s easy to tally the $2 for the loaf of bread and $200 for the soccer team. What’s harder is to put a price tag on the joys – and yes, there are joys. Not only the cuddles and kisses, the first steps and first day of school, but the inexplicable reward of watching your child grow into a person all her own.

6016 146063812673 548797673 3876273 6841177 n1 300x199 Kids just arent worth itI spent yesterday afternoon blowing bubbles in the front yard with my “economically worthless” children. The baby curled cozily against me in the sling, I watched as my 4-year-old twirled dizzy circles in the grass with her wand outstretched, lost in a swirl of bubbles. She’d spin until she fell down, an exaggerated, laughing collapse, and then run over to squeal at her baby sister, who happily squealed right back; their own little language.

I wasn’t thinking about the cost of the bubbles or the new shoes I’d have to soon buy her, the preschool fees that are due this morning or the college fees down the road. I wasn’t thinking about much at all. But I was happy, purely. I don’t imagine that kind of joy can be quantified.


  1. Hmm... i would be interested in reading the actual study. The link up there just leads you to a Fox News article. I wonder if other conclusions (some probably not so shocking and media-worthy) could be drawn from the study instead.

  2. I had read this and pretty much everything that comes from the financial bottom-line perspective has to be taken with a grain of salt and that's one big emphasis here. It's the same problem with viewing education through a corporate lens: they're just not the same thing. Apples and oranges.