The Cost of Raising Children

Seeing children only in terms of cost is a mistake.


John Stonestreet

Kasey Leander

Last month the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal responded to the claim that the average American family spends an estimated $300,000 to raise a child.  

Of course kids are expensive, they conceded, but “that  isn’t the way to look at it.” Seeing children only in terms of cost is a mistake. “Whatever children cost to raise,” the editors concluded, “they are a priceless vote of confidence in the future.”  

They’re right. It’s not that kids don’t take massive investments of time and energy. They do. But kids are investments. And the returns are incredible, though rarely easy.  

Parents should be thoughtful about how and when to embark on the journey, but children are a gift, not a burden. They are image bearers, not luxury goods. To think about kids only in terms of how they impact our happiness or our wallets is to completely miss the point. The most important relationships don’t always make life easier, but they do make it better.  


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