Author Topic: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?  (Read 8294 times)

Freedom2016

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #150 on: January 03, 2019, 09:28:54 PM »
I read most of this thread sitting in my kids' room while they fell asleep tonight. They're 4 and 6 and yes, the early years were unbelievably intense. I mean, it's still intense and still exhausting, but we're out of the diaper phase, finally, which really helps. And it is all so very worth it; I can't imagine not having these awesome little people in my life.

You seem grounded in the realities you may face, and have lots of resources and support. IMO if you go into it with eyes wide open, as you seem to be, you will have done as much as any parent can to prepare themselves for the experience.

It sounds like you will regret not going for it - regardless of outcome - far more than you'll miss your money or freedom. :)

Good luck!

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #151 on: January 03, 2019, 09:41:02 PM »
I read most of this thread sitting in my kids' room while they fell asleep tonight. They're 4 and 6 and yes, the early years were unbelievably intense. I mean, it's still intense and still exhausting, but we're out of the diaper phase, finally, which really helps. And it is all so very worth it; I can't imagine not having these awesome little people in my life.

You seem grounded in the realities you may face, and have lots of resources and support. IMO if you go into it with eyes wide open, as you seem to be, you will have done as much as any parent can to prepare themselves for the experience.

It sounds like you will regret not going for it - regardless of outcome - far more than you'll miss your money or freedom. :)

Good luck!

Thank you. That was so sweet and kind. My fear now is that Iím getting myself excited about something that is still a long shot and after what I went through for 6 years, Iíd love to avoid more heartache, but that canít be controlled and as Iíve written, fear canít stop you from living.

Fields of Gold

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #152 on: January 03, 2019, 10:15:18 PM »
What are your next few actionable steps toward your dream? (Besides save up money until August.)

profnot

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #153 on: January 03, 2019, 10:21:52 PM »
Just to throw out a few ideas -

One nice guy I knew really liked teenagers.  So he would have a foreign exchange student live with him every school year.  Usually a guy in 11th grade.  He has kept in touch with almost all the kids and travels to visit some of them.

Foreign exchange students would take up the school year.  In summer, you could travel.


Another idea is the Big Brother program.  My brother did this with boys age 9 - 12 and found it very rewarding.  (Turns out my brother got cancer and died at age 59.  His wife was handicapped and could not have taken care of a child - even a teen - if they had adopted. So I'm glad he did his fathering in this way.)


I think you said your siblings have kids.  You could take them traveling during the summers - such as take them one at a time during the summer between her/his sophmore and junior year of high school.  That could be a life-time trip for a teen.  You already have a life-long relationship with these kids - a trip would deepen it.  Or you could live abroad and have each kid come stay with you rather than stay in US.

One retired gal I know likes to go to the hospital and hold babies who need cuddling.  She does this three days a week when she is not traveling.


There are lots of kids needing parenting and lots of different ways of doing it.     



MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #154 on: January 03, 2019, 10:31:47 PM »
Just to throw out a few ideas -

One nice guy I knew really liked teenagers.  So he would have a foreign exchange student live with him every school year.  Usually a guy in 11th grade.  He has kept in touch with almost all the kids and travels to visit some of them.

Foreign exchange students would take up the school year.  In summer, you could travel.


Another idea is the Big Brother program.  My brother did this with boys age 9 - 12 and found it very rewarding.  (Turns out my brother got cancer and died at age 59.  His wife was handicapped and could not have taken care of a child - even a teen - if they had adopted. So I'm glad he did his fathering in this way.)


I think you said your siblings have kids.  You could take them traveling during the summers - such as take them one at a time during the summer between her/his sophmore and junior year of high school.  That could be a life-time trip for a teen.  You already have a life-long relationship with these kids - a trip would deepen it.  Or you could live abroad and have each kid come stay with you rather than stay in US.

One retired gal I know likes to go to the hospital and hold babies who need cuddling.  She does this three days a week when she is not traveling.


There are lots of kids needing parenting and lots of different ways of doing it.   

Great ideas, thanks for sharing.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #155 on: January 03, 2019, 10:34:43 PM »
What are your next few actionable steps toward your dream? (Besides save up money until August.)

1. Researching surrogacy places
2. Enrolling in a surrogacy conference
3. Health check
4. Research baby budgets and the how to strategize FIRE
5. Researching and creating a plan for how I would make this work in reality

Fields of Gold

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #156 on: January 04, 2019, 11:19:47 AM »
You've touched on the cost and its impact on FIREing.  Sounds like fatherhood has been a life priority for more than six years.  If it took 250k Australian dollars (and selling some of your investments) in various unsuccessful attempts, then you could delay retirement and not travel as much.  If a child were born after spending $250k, then you'd find a way to balance work and being a single parent.  The child would get to see your work ethic, and you could model how to successfully balance career and family time.




MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #157 on: January 04, 2019, 12:57:36 PM »
You've touched on the cost and its impact on FIREing.  Sounds like fatherhood has been a life priority for more than six years.  If it took 250k Australian dollars (and selling some of your investments) in various unsuccessful attempts, then you could delay retirement and not travel as much.  If a child were born after spending $250k, then you'd find a way to balance work and being a single parent.  The child would get to see your work ethic, and you could model how to successfully balance career and family time.

One of the best things about MMM is teaching me to run the numbers, something I never did before with my life. Iíve started to work on my baby budgets for 0-1, 1-5, 5+.  The numbers are staggering particularly because right now I donít have a mortgage and the associated costs of home ownership, donít have a car and all of those associated costs and donít, obviously, pay for any childcare. Iíll keep renting, but Iíll need to have a car and need childcare from 1-5yo. That means my savings and investments will be a bit less than I had planned. I will most definitely have to work longer, unless the market goes wild again and I hit my target for FIRE quicker. Thatís particularly annoying because where I live and work isnít quite where Iíd want to raise a kid, but I wonít make this money and have my great job anywhere else. So I have two options: either bite that bullet and deal if I have the kid as soon as possible, or wait 2 years and try for the kid? The latter option would reduce the time where I live and work but increase my age. With the former option I worry that if the kid spends too much time here then leaving might be more dramatic, and I also would like the kid fluent in another language natively, but where I live is English speaking, unless I only get au pairs from the countries Iíd like the kid to be fluent in. More thinking required on this!

deborah

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #158 on: January 04, 2019, 02:10:36 PM »
If you live where I think you live, you shouldnít need a car. If you plan to rent there, do the Mustashian thing, and work out where everything is for the child and rent in that location so you donít need a car and can catch public transport to work. Your city is multicultural. You should be able to live in a multicultural community where the child will hear the language you want it imprinted on every day, where any baby sitter you want to hire speaks that language at home.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #159 on: January 04, 2019, 02:16:40 PM »
If you live where I think you live, you shouldnít need a car. If you plan to rent there, do the Mustashian thing, and work out where everything is for the child and rent in that location so you donít need a car and can catch public transport to work. Your city is multicultural. You should be able to live in a multicultural community where the child will hear the language you want it imprinted on every day, where any baby sitter you want to hire speaks that language at home.

I was thinking, do I really need a car? During the week I canít imagine using one, so that leaves the weekends. Iíd use it to take the kid to things but we could just as easy walk with a stroller. I guess I have that parent panic of, what if the kid gets sick and I have to rush it to the hospital? Even if I do Uber or taxis Iíll need to have a car seat I carry with me. The pre-school would b in walking distance.

MayDay

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #160 on: January 04, 2019, 06:17:20 PM »
Uber has a car seat option.

If you are going to do it,I would definitely do it NOW. Don't wait.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #161 on: January 04, 2019, 06:24:07 PM »
Uber has a car seat option.

If you are going to do it,I would definitely do it NOW. Don't wait.

Yeah, that would be great

MrUpwardlyMobile

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #162 on: January 04, 2019, 08:05:25 PM »
Uber has a car seat option.

If you are going to do it,I would definitely do it NOW. Don't wait.

Yeah, that would be great

Uber has a front facing child seat option that is not fit for infants under 12 months and not even recommended for children under 24 months.

https://help.uber.com/riders/article/uber-car-seat?nodeId=3abcbae1-132b-42a9-8277-0dab00fa3879

https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/Pages/AAP-Updates-Recommendations-on-Car-Seats-for-Children.aspx

deborah

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #163 on: January 04, 2019, 08:30:03 PM »
Uber doesnít appear to have that service where OP lives, however there are several taxi companies that are specifically for babies and young children. Taxis are exempt if the child is under 7. As Ubers are not taxis, they arenít exempt, so should decline the fare.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #164 on: January 06, 2019, 05:43:04 AM »
Well, geez, now Iím not feeling so great about this. Iíve contacted several surrogacy agencies, and well, all thatís fine. None of this will be easy or simple, but again, itís all doable.  While I was doing my research though I discovered blogs by children conceived through surrogacy advocating against surrogacy. Their basic argument was that surrogacy was the selling of human life, and it removed children from the birth mother and their is a deep link of child to mother that occurs in the womb, and removing this causes trauma for the child that might not manifest fully for years. The children experience issues like some adopted kids, low self esteem, loss of identity, etc.

One person wrote the following: ďBecause somewhere between the narcissistic, selfish or desperate need for a child and the desire to make a buck, everyone elseís needs and wants are put before the kids needs. We, the children of surrogacy, become lost. That is the real tragedy. ď

Iím haunted by this now. The kid wouldnít know the donor mother, or the history or any information about siblings. I would never be able to give them that information. And Iíll never know how important that information would be. I would want to know. Hell, I hate the fact that I was circumcised without my consent as a baby, would the kid feel that it was wrong of me to bring it into the world knowing that it would never be able to know half of its genetic history?  I think if the donor was known and somehow involved, even if through sharing pictures and light communications, it would be different. I think there are ways to address these issues but not with what is available to me as a single man.

Someone earlier mentioned co-parenting, which I initially didnít think would be right for me, but I can feel now, that ethically (my ethics only), it would be better than what I was contemplating.

I feel like everything is making it improbable to be a father and it crushes me as I know I would be a great one. Iím a bit bummed out as I thought I was making progress through this. Iím still going to attend the surrogacy conference but they donít have the children of surrogacy as speakers. Thatís a big miss, as the impact on the children and their sense of self should matter.

On one hand Iím quite sad about this, but on the other, glad my research revealed this information and I can make choices to not overly burden my kid. Iím starting to feel like I would be consciously adding so much weigh to the kid: child of a surrogate, single father raising, older parent, living in multiple countries, identity issues, lack of siblings, etc.

Although I know Iíve overcome so much, is that the life I want for my kid and how do I know it will cope, without some type of majoring suffering, especially because I wanted this so much and happened to have the money to make it happen?

This all feels so cruel.

Malkynn

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #165 on: January 06, 2019, 06:51:11 AM »
Dude.

Kids get fucked up every day by all sorts of shit.
If not fucking up a kid was a valid reason not to have one, then no one should have kids.

Of course wanting a kid is selfish. You would be doing it because you WANT a kid. So what? Are kids that are accidents somehow more valid?
Also, I know two women who surrogate and they DO NOT do it for money. I'm sure that's a thing, but women who do it for the deep personal experience of giving someone a baby are also out there too, so....

Don't worry, you might be a great dad and do everything right and your kid could still end up an axe murderer. There's literally no predicting how your kid will turn out.

There's no "solve for x" here.

I repeat: if you will spend your life regretting not having a kid, then have a damn kid. A part of having a kid is knowing that shit might go very very wrong. That's a BIG part of the deal.

You can't just want a perfect, happy, healthy kid who has a great life. You have to also be ready for a kid who gets cancer, a fucked up kid, a kid who becomes a fucked up adult, a kid who dies, a kid who decides they hate you and never talks to you again, a kid who becomes a drug addict, a kid who is born with defects so severe they need 24hr care for life, etc, etc.

Yes.
You might go through all of this and not get the wonderful parenting experience that you hoped for.
That's parenting for you.
Only you can decide if you still want it despite all of the risks.


sun and sand

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #166 on: January 06, 2019, 09:43:50 PM »
I feel for you. It sounds like you are thinking about having a child all the time. You seem certain that you would be a good dad. The most important part to being a good parent is being present in the moment. If you can do that, I say go for it. You do not know how long you will live. I adopted my second son at 44. I love him so much. I do not think that he minds that at 18 his mom is 63. I have a lot of energy and make sure I take fitness classes. One drawback is that I am retired and can not travel much as I would like to since he is a teenager and would rather be with his friends. Still, he goes to our beach house and to Spain where we have friends. I am a single mom and am so glad to have my two sons. At Christmas I had them both here and made a turkey.  Let us know your decision. Good luck!

Case

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #167 on: January 07, 2019, 11:26:52 AM »
Dude.

Kids get fucked up every day by all sorts of shit.
If not fucking up a kid was a valid reason not to have one, then no one should have kids.

Of course wanting a kid is selfish. You would be doing it because you WANT a kid. So what? Are kids that are accidents somehow more valid?
Also, I know two women who surrogate and they DO NOT do it for money. I'm sure that's a thing, but women who do it for the deep personal experience of giving someone a baby are also out there too, so....

Don't worry, you might be a great dad and do everything right and your kid could still end up an axe murderer. There's literally no predicting how your kid will turn out.

There's no "solve for x" here.

I repeat: if you will spend your life regretting not having a kid, then have a damn kid. A part of having a kid is knowing that shit might go very very wrong. That's a BIG part of the deal.

You can't just want a perfect, happy, healthy kid who has a great life. You have to also be ready for a kid who gets cancer, a fucked up kid, a kid who becomes a fucked up adult, a kid who dies, a kid who decides they hate you and never talks to you again, a kid who becomes a drug addict, a kid who is born with defects so severe they need 24hr care for life, etc, etc.

Yes.
You might go through all of this and not get the wonderful parenting experience that you hoped for.
That's parenting for you.
Only you can decide if you still want it despite all of the risks.

I take issue with your premise that having children should not be a rational choice (see one of your previous responses), but rather is a calling.  Raising a child not only effects you, but especially the child, and society as well.  Although there is some value in using gut instinct to decide if you really want a child or not, and this is indeed a highly important factor, this should not be the only factor.  Ensuring that the child has a reasonably promising future is certainly important, and I would argue at least equally important to your own personal urge to raise a child.  Because other people have to live with your choices too.  And simply feeling the calling to be a father is not enough.

Sure, a million different things might happen.  But I think the critical thing here is for the OP to decide if the cumulative risks related to 1) child-rearing in general, 2) his age, 3) his single status, 4) any other relevant things,... are too high or not.  And not just for his own self-focused interest in having a child, but for child as well.

Since these risks are not fully quantifiable, the best he can do is acknowledge that they are there.  And then try to make an educated choice on his own.  Simply making a choice because there is no other way to fulfill his need to raise a child, is insufficient in my opinion.  He is not the only one affected by the decision.

I don't know the answer to whether the situation he'd be putting a child into is too risky or not.  Certainly an average person (20s or 30s) having a child under average circumstances is not too high risk.  As people age, those risks go up.  Especially after age 35.  What if they OP was approaching 55 instead of 50?  What about 60?  70?  80?  At some point, fatherhood becomes ludicrous, because you're putting the child in a disastrous situation. 

To the OP, I'm not suggesting you shouldn't have a child for the reasons listed above.  Rather, I'm just suggesting you continue to think deeply about these things (clearly you already are thinking about them heavily), and not just make this an emotional choice.  Think rationally for the sake of your future child. 


I'm a red panda

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #168 on: January 07, 2019, 11:38:29 AM »
Well, geez, now Iím not feeling so great about this. Iíve contacted several surrogacy agencies, and well, all thatís fine. None of this will be easy or simple, but again, itís all doable.  While I was doing my research though I discovered blogs by children conceived through surrogacy advocating against surrogacy. Their basic argument was that surrogacy was the selling of human life, and it removed children from the birth mother and their is a deep link of child to mother that occurs in the womb, and removing this causes trauma for the child that might not manifest fully for years. The children experience issues like some adopted kids, low self esteem, loss of identity, etc.

One person wrote the following: ďBecause somewhere between the narcissistic, selfish or desperate need for a child and the desire to make a buck, everyone elseís needs and wants are put before the kids needs. We, the children of surrogacy, become lost. That is the real tragedy. ď

Iím haunted by this now. The kid wouldnít know the donor mother, or the history or any information about siblings. I would never be able to give them that information. And Iíll never know how important that information would be. I would want to know. Hell, I hate the fact that I was circumcised without my consent as a baby, would the kid feel that it was wrong of me to bring it into the world knowing that it would never be able to know half of its genetic history?  I think if the donor was known and somehow involved, even if through sharing pictures and light communications, it would be different. I think there are ways to address these issues but not with what is available to me as a single man.

Someone earlier mentioned co-parenting, which I initially didnít think would be right for me, but I can feel now, that ethically (my ethics only), it would be better than what I was contemplating.

I feel like everything is making it improbable to be a father and it crushes me as I know I would be a great one. Iím a bit bummed out as I thought I was making progress through this. Iím still going to attend the surrogacy conference but they donít have the children of surrogacy as speakers. Thatís a big miss, as the impact on the children and their sense of self should matter.

On one hand Iím quite sad about this, but on the other, glad my research revealed this information and I can make choices to not overly burden my kid. Iím starting to feel like I would be consciously adding so much weigh to the kid: child of a surrogate, single father raising, older parent, living in multiple countries, identity issues, lack of siblings, etc.

Although I know Iíve overcome so much, is that the life I want for my kid and how do I know it will cope, without some type of majoring suffering, especially because I wanted this so much and happened to have the money to make it happen?

This all feels so cruel.

This is good stuff for you to think about.
There are ethical issues to using a surrogate. There are ethical issues to adopting. There are ethical issues to biological children between couples. 

It's all very complicated, and you have to come to the conclusion yourself.

Malkynn

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #169 on: January 07, 2019, 12:43:32 PM »
Dude.

Kids get fucked up every day by all sorts of shit.
If not fucking up a kid was a valid reason not to have one, then no one should have kids.

Of course wanting a kid is selfish. You would be doing it because you WANT a kid. So what? Are kids that are accidents somehow more valid?
Also, I know two women who surrogate and they DO NOT do it for money. I'm sure that's a thing, but women who do it for the deep personal experience of giving someone a baby are also out there too, so....

Don't worry, you might be a great dad and do everything right and your kid could still end up an axe murderer. There's literally no predicting how your kid will turn out.

There's no "solve for x" here.

I repeat: if you will spend your life regretting not having a kid, then have a damn kid. A part of having a kid is knowing that shit might go very very wrong. That's a BIG part of the deal.

You can't just want a perfect, happy, healthy kid who has a great life. You have to also be ready for a kid who gets cancer, a fucked up kid, a kid who becomes a fucked up adult, a kid who dies, a kid who decides they hate you and never talks to you again, a kid who becomes a drug addict, a kid who is born with defects so severe they need 24hr care for life, etc, etc.

Yes.
You might go through all of this and not get the wonderful parenting experience that you hoped for.
That's parenting for you.
Only you can decide if you still want it despite all of the risks.

I take issue with your premise that having children should not be a rational choice (see one of your previous responses), but rather is a calling.  Raising a child not only effects you, but especially the child, and society as well.  Although there is some value in using gut instinct to decide if you really want a child or not, and this is indeed a highly important factor, this should not be the only factor.  Ensuring that the child has a reasonably promising future is certainly important, and I would argue at least equally important to your own personal urge to raise a child.  Because other people have to live with your choices too.  And simply feeling the calling to be a father is not enough.

Sure, a million different things might happen.  But I think the critical thing here is for the OP to decide if the cumulative risks related to 1) child-rearing in general, 2) his age, 3) his single status, 4) any other relevant things,... are too high or not.  And not just for his own self-focused interest in having a child, but for child as well.

Since these risks are not fully quantifiable, the best he can do is acknowledge that they are there.  And then try to make an educated choice on his own.  Simply making a choice because there is no other way to fulfill his need to raise a child, is insufficient in my opinion.  He is not the only one affected by the decision.

I don't know the answer to whether the situation he'd be putting a child into is too risky or not.  Certainly an average person (20s or 30s) having a child under average circumstances is not too high risk.  As people age, those risks go up.  Especially after age 35.  What if they OP was approaching 55 instead of 50?  What about 60?  70?  80?  At some point, fatherhood becomes ludicrous, because you're putting the child in a disastrous situation. 

To the OP, I'm not suggesting you shouldn't have a child for the reasons listed above.  Rather, I'm just suggesting you continue to think deeply about these things (clearly you already are thinking about them heavily), and not just make this an emotional choice.  Think rationally for the sake of your future child.

Everything I have said is under the presumption that OP has the capacity and means to provide a good life for a child. He's said this over and over and I'm offering my perspective based on that presupposition.

I don't personally think his age and marital status actually offer all that much in terms of risk to the health and well-being of a child. I think they are factors that make it much more risky for his own long term health and well being.

You may have a different opinion on that and think that those are significant risks. On that, we can just choose to disagree.

However, I can and will absolutely agree with you that if someone's situation is too risky to be able to reasonably predict that they will be able to provide a great life for a child, then no, they shouldn't have one just because they want to.

My point I was trying to make in my last post was that even if you do remove all known risks, you still can't guarantee that a child will turn out happy and healthy, and that's a serious possibility that even the best parental candidates need to consider before taking that leap.

Case

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #170 on: January 07, 2019, 01:50:32 PM »
Dude.

Kids get fucked up every day by all sorts of shit.
If not fucking up a kid was a valid reason not to have one, then no one should have kids.

Of course wanting a kid is selfish. You would be doing it because you WANT a kid. So what? Are kids that are accidents somehow more valid?
Also, I know two women who surrogate and they DO NOT do it for money. I'm sure that's a thing, but women who do it for the deep personal experience of giving someone a baby are also out there too, so....

Don't worry, you might be a great dad and do everything right and your kid could still end up an axe murderer. There's literally no predicting how your kid will turn out.

There's no "solve for x" here.

I repeat: if you will spend your life regretting not having a kid, then have a damn kid. A part of having a kid is knowing that shit might go very very wrong. That's a BIG part of the deal.

You can't just want a perfect, happy, healthy kid who has a great life. You have to also be ready for a kid who gets cancer, a fucked up kid, a kid who becomes a fucked up adult, a kid who dies, a kid who decides they hate you and never talks to you again, a kid who becomes a drug addict, a kid who is born with defects so severe they need 24hr care for life, etc, etc.

Yes.
You might go through all of this and not get the wonderful parenting experience that you hoped for.
That's parenting for you.
Only you can decide if you still want it despite all of the risks.

I take issue with your premise that having children should not be a rational choice (see one of your previous responses), but rather is a calling.  Raising a child not only effects you, but especially the child, and society as well.  Although there is some value in using gut instinct to decide if you really want a child or not, and this is indeed a highly important factor, this should not be the only factor.  Ensuring that the child has a reasonably promising future is certainly important, and I would argue at least equally important to your own personal urge to raise a child.  Because other people have to live with your choices too.  And simply feeling the calling to be a father is not enough.

Sure, a million different things might happen.  But I think the critical thing here is for the OP to decide if the cumulative risks related to 1) child-rearing in general, 2) his age, 3) his single status, 4) any other relevant things,... are too high or not.  And not just for his own self-focused interest in having a child, but for child as well.

Since these risks are not fully quantifiable, the best he can do is acknowledge that they are there.  And then try to make an educated choice on his own.  Simply making a choice because there is no other way to fulfill his need to raise a child, is insufficient in my opinion.  He is not the only one affected by the decision.

I don't know the answer to whether the situation he'd be putting a child into is too risky or not.  Certainly an average person (20s or 30s) having a child under average circumstances is not too high risk.  As people age, those risks go up.  Especially after age 35.  What if they OP was approaching 55 instead of 50?  What about 60?  70?  80?  At some point, fatherhood becomes ludicrous, because you're putting the child in a disastrous situation. 

To the OP, I'm not suggesting you shouldn't have a child for the reasons listed above.  Rather, I'm just suggesting you continue to think deeply about these things (clearly you already are thinking about them heavily), and not just make this an emotional choice.  Think rationally for the sake of your future child.

Everything I have said is under the presumption that OP has the capacity and means to provide a good life for a child. He's said this over and over and I'm offering my perspective based on that presupposition.

I don't personally think his age and marital status actually offer all that much in terms of risk to the health and well-being of a child. I think they are factors that make it much more risky for his own long term health and well being.

You may have a different opinion on that and think that those are significant risks. On that, we can just choose to disagree.

However, I can and will absolutely agree with you that if someone's situation is too risky to be able to reasonably predict that they will be able to provide a great life for a child, then no, they shouldn't have one just because they want to.

My point I was trying to make in my last post was that even if you do remove all known risks, you still can't guarantee that a child will turn out happy and healthy, and that's a serious possibility that even the best parental candidates need to consider before taking that leap.

Thanks for the discourse; cool that we can boil things down to root of disagreement and acknowledge it.  I appreciate that.

I am not certain whether his age is too much of a risk, but think it is a big concern because he is pretty far above some commonly recommended cut-offs.  If everyone in society started having kids at that age, it would no doubt be for the worse... and possibly significantly worse.  The deleterious effects of having children at old age are more well-published for women, but I think sperm get old too.

In terms of being single, I have zero concerns about his competency in being able to overcome fatigue/etc...  these are challenges but ones he seems likely to be able to overcome.  The bigger concern in my opinion is the lack of a safety net that a spouse provides, in the event that he dies, falls terribly ill, etc... (e.g. things that are more likely as you age).   So I do disagree with you there.

It's easy for people to chime in and say "well, I had a kid at 43 and everything turner out ok"; singular experiences don't matter as much as the statistics.  So my point is, based on the imperfect knowledge we are limited to, supplying the seed for a child when you are almost 50 brings some serious concern with it... but I wouldn't go so far as to say he shouldn't have a kid.  That part of the equation is for him to decide... part of his determination of the cumulative risk.  My goal is to shift the conversation away from individual potential outcomes, to more of a viewpoint of making an educated choice based on the approximate likelihood of outcomes.

To your last point (and some previous ones), my counter-statement is: I see your point, but the point I was intending is that regardless of that, the objective should be to determine if the chance of a good outcome for the child is reasonably good.

Perhaps a good illustration is as follows:
Let's compare MTD to some guy who has a child at a young age but doesn't really want to be a father.  I would agree that the drive/desire/calling to be a good father probably trumps MTD's age and single status, because having a father that doesn't want you is very likely to mess you up.  However, my point is that this example doesn't actually matter; MTD still needs to decide if having a child is overall a good thing for the child.  Examples of his situation being better than other terrible situations are not relevant; they are basically straw man arguments.

partgypsy

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #171 on: January 07, 2019, 02:04:37 PM »
I cannot speak for children of surrogate, but I would not let that weigh on you too much. Intentional child, accidental child, adopted child, child when too young, child when too old, there is always something to feed parental guilt!

The most important thing for a child is to be loved and be raised in a stable environment. I considered being an egg donor, or possibly a surrogate when in grad school, because a) it was a decent amount of money b) in my mind I thought I would be able to do this great thing, allow a couple who really wanted a child, to have a child. I didn't mind at all the idea my genetic material would be out there, as long as the child was raised in a loving home. The only reason I didn't do it, is that the procedures for stimulating and harvesting the eggs may impact future fertility, and I knew I wanted kids in the future (my Mom and sister dissuaded me when they told me that). Aside from that I did not have ethical concerns.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2019, 02:13:54 PM by partgypsy »

marion10

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #172 on: January 07, 2019, 02:26:52 PM »
I have two friends who became fathers later in life- one at age 50 and the other around 55 - they both have younger spouses. I would say right now, they are active engaged fathers who love their children very much- but they have the younger spouse as a safety net. I have another younger friend who is an only child and lost his father at about age 12 and then his mother at age 21. It has been very, very difficult for him (although he is finishing up his master's degree)- part of this (IMHO) due to his mother's denial about how ill she was and the estate was not in good shape.

Fields of Gold

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #173 on: January 07, 2019, 02:37:32 PM »
It's easy for people to chime in and say "well, I had a kid at 43 and everything turner out ok"; singular experiences don't matter as much as the statistics.  So my point is, based on the imperfect knowledge we are limited to, supplying the seed for a child when you are almost 50 brings some serious concern with it... but I wouldn't go so far as to say he shouldn't have a kid.  That part of the equation is for him to decide... part of his determination of the cumulative risk.  My goal is to shift the conversation away from individual potential outcomes, to more of a viewpoint of making an educated choice based on the approximate likelihood of outcomes.

OP answered that he had his sperm professionally evaluated and they were cleared.  The embryos are also evaluated and carefully selected as part of the surrogacy process.

I'm a red panda

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #174 on: January 07, 2019, 02:49:57 PM »
It's easy for people to chime in and say "well, I had a kid at 43 and everything turner out ok"; singular experiences don't matter as much as the statistics.  So my point is, based on the imperfect knowledge we are limited to, supplying the seed for a child when you are almost 50 brings some serious concern with it... but I wouldn't go so far as to say he shouldn't have a kid.  That part of the equation is for him to decide... part of his determination of the cumulative risk.  My goal is to shift the conversation away from individual potential outcomes, to more of a viewpoint of making an educated choice based on the approximate likelihood of outcomes.

OP answered that he had his sperm professionally evaluated and they were cleared.  The embryos are also evaluated and carefully selected as part of the surrogacy process.

That isn't going to do anything to look for de novo genetic anomalies, which happen at a greater rate with age.
There is no such thing as "clearing sperm", since it is produced continuously and only a very small subset can ever be looked at.  They can evaluate for risk factors, but that's it.


Yes, pre-implantation genetic testing can be done; but when a full cycle goes through, and all the embryos are abnormal; you still have to pay. (Not to mention a perfect embryo doesn't necessarily mean implantation will happen, or a pregnancy will carry to term). OP has replied that going through all that money without a child would be very upsetting to him.   

Venturing

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #175 on: January 08, 2019, 12:08:41 AM »
My husband has walked a similar path to you; this is our story.

My husband had turned 50 and still had never met the right girl and never had children. When my husband was 54 his father passed away. His father said that his one regret for my husband was that he had never had children as he knew that my husband would be an amazing dad. My husband had never considered other routes to parenthood but had accepted the awesome uncle role.

Six weeks later I (then 26) years old started a new job and met an older man there that I quite fancied...... 7 years and 4 kids later my husband's world has been turned upside down ;)

Plenty of people thought I was mad for marrying somebody so much older than me. Realistically I may outlive him by decades. But I decided back then that I would much rather have a shorter marriage to a man I love than not to have that marriage at all. The same applies to our parenting. He may not be in our children's lives for as long as he would like to be but he's an amazing dad while he is (and if he takes after his own parents then our children will fly the nest well before he goes).

People lose spouses and parents far earlier than they expect for any number of reasons. I'm not going to live my life from a place of fear. I believe in working out what you really want and enjoying it while you can. By all means take sensible measures (decide on a guardian, build strong support networks and set aside some money) but it sounds to me like you know what it is you really want to do.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #176 on: January 08, 2019, 12:46:54 AM »
My husband has walked a similar path to you; this is our story.

My husband had turned 50 and still had never met the right girl and never had children. When my husband was 54 his father passed away. His father said that his one regret for my husband was that he had never had children as he knew that my husband would be an amazing dad. My husband had never considered other routes to parenthood but had accepted the awesome uncle role.

Six weeks later I (then 26) years old started a new job and met an older man there that I quite fancied...... 7 years and 4 kids later my husband's world has been turned upside down ;)

Plenty of people thought I was mad for marrying somebody so much older than me. Realistically I may outlive him by decades. But I decided back then that I would much rather have a shorter marriage to a man I love than not to have that marriage at all. The same applies to our parenting. He may not be in our children's lives for as long as he would like to be but he's an amazing dad while he is (and if he takes after his own parents then our children will fly the nest well before he goes).

People lose spouses and parents far earlier than they expect for any number of reasons. I'm not going to live my life from a place of fear. I believe in working out what you really want and enjoying it while you can. By all means take sensible measures (decide on a guardian, build strong support networks and set aside some money) but it sounds to me like you know what it is you really want to do.

You made me cry.  Thank you.

NUF

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #177 on: January 08, 2019, 12:37:38 PM »
I've been reading along and keep thinking of the following:  https://therumpus.net/2011/04/dear-sugar-the-rumpus-advice-column-71-the-ghost-ship-that-didnt-carry-us/

I don't have any advice but want you to know that I appreciate how thoughtful you're being about this decision. I wish you peace in whatever decision you make and also in grieving the end of your marriage. Best of luck.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #178 on: January 11, 2019, 02:22:24 AM »
Thanks again everyone for taking the time to share your thoughts, itís meant so much to me. I had been feeling a bit down after reading those blogs and started to move away from the idea a bit. However, Iím committed to the research and investigation plan Iíve created for myself.  Today I met with a father who just had his 11 week old sone through surrogacy.  The father is only a couple years younger than myself. He shared so much information, particularly about how I can keep the birth mother or tummy mummy in my chikdís life. He let me hold his son and I was like, yes, this, this is what I want. I shared my fears and concerns and he shared his perspective. He definitely made me feel more confident about it all. He also made clear Iíd be looking at a bit more than $100k, which, quite frankly, is fine. I still have more research to do and Iím by no means settled on a path, but at least I have options to address the concerns raised by the blogger.

socaso

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #179 on: January 11, 2019, 02:40:09 PM »
I say do it. I love my kid so much. I knew I wanted to be a parent when I was still a kid myself (probably about 14) and I did a lot of this and that and finally had my kid when I was 37. It's worth everything. It'll be more challenging on your own but you know that as you were raised in a single parent household.

There is a great book by Jennifer Grant called "Good Stuff" that has a lot of sweet stories of her childhood with her father, Cary Grant. He was in his 60's when she was born and he devoted himself to her. It really made me change my mind on what age a parent should be.

Just make sure you have the financials lined up, life insurance if you need it, who will be the guardian if anything happens to you. That sort of thing.

Good luck, there's nothing like the love you will have for your child.

Hula Hoop

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #180 on: January 12, 2019, 02:57:51 AM »
socaso - that book sounds like it would be a great gift for my husband, who was 46 and 49 when our kids were born.  He is an excellent dad.  Nothing to do with age - he also would have been a great dad if he'd had kids in his 20s.  He just loves kids and spends hours playing with them.  Way more patience than me, in fact.

I agree with the others - it's going to have some very tough moments, particularly in the beginning.  But with only one kid and enough money and family help being a single parent by choice is totally do-able IMO.  Go for it - but do it soon.