Author Topic: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?  (Read 8188 times)

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #50 on: December 31, 2018, 02:14:08 PM »
Agree. I understand you're healthy now and have no reason to think you won't remain that way, but as a 20-something supporting an older parent through health issues while my friends travel the world with their parents and have 20 years left with them...I think it's just too late. I think my dad was too old when my parents had me (he was only 37 but he had known health issues even then) and it was a selfish decision. I'm sure you would be an amazing dad in the years you have with your kid, but I think you're really going to shortchange them by having a kid at your age.
This is an important side I forgot.  Your child would just be spreading there wings and looking for job opportunities as you reading early 70s and decent chance start needing some help (physical and/or mental).  These days the young adult will likely have to move a lot for career advancement, but if they need to assist caring for you that will complicate things.  My parents are mid 70s and they are just realizing they will need help soon which means they are moving near me and I need to stay put. 

You are putting an immense burden on your child for selfish reasons.  They should be focused on job or finding and starting a family in their 20s, not caring for a parent 50 years their senior.

We'll, if he's FIREing when he says he will his assets should cover health care, and any other type of care he'll need. The kid won't be on the hook for any type of parental support. So the only selfish part may be "congrats on graduating from college,now I'm going to die and leave you alone"

Only?? I don't give two shits about the money, and my parents so far have refused all financial help I've offered them. Furthermore, they live 8 hours away, so I do what I can when I visit but I'm not involved in daily life help. It's the emotional stuff I'm thinking about. What's hard is spending my days worried about my dad's health while my friends continue to experience life with their parents as equals, rather than someone they're caring for.

In a healthy parental/child relationship, this is the stage where it really bears fruit. My friends travel with their parents, go to shows and dinner with them, and just have daily life experiences with them. My dad's cognitive function is slipping, my mom is exhausted from caring for him. (She's 8 years younger and so far pretty healthy.) I just am incredibly jealous of losing this time with both of them to my dad being old.

It's also a unique kind of loneliness to be experiencing this while my friends' parents are still healthy. My friends care a lot & ask after my dad constantly, but no one else really understand what it's like to wonder a little more every time you see your dad if it's the last time, or to constantly have a running script in my brain thinking of how he's doing and what he needs. I imagine by the time you hit 40 or so you at least have a little more community when you find yourself in that situation.

Sorry, I'm in the thick of all this having returned from Christmas with the family a couple days ago, and perhaps that's coloring my perceptions a bit more than it should. But I just don't think many other people commenting here are doing a good job putting themselves in the child's shoes. My childhood was wonderful--I didn't know any different than having a dad in his 40's and 50's, and that seems to be the life stage of most of the parents commenting. But being a 20 something with an almost 70 year old parent is hard and I wouldn't deliberately choose that path for anyone.

It does feel like your projecting a lot. Iím a lot older than you but my parents are close to their 70s. Both are active as hell and donít need me looking after them or worrying about them. Hell, my grandmother is in her 90s and still lives alone and looks after herself. We arenít stress balls worrying about them. Sure, that may happen but hasnít yet. Nothing in life is guaranteed and your life and experience is not the same as everyone elseís. I was raised by a single mom, but you know who stepped up, my grandfathers. They were older and both invested a lot of time in me, because they had time to give. I would have taken a father at any age over one that was absent.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #51 on: December 31, 2018, 02:22:24 PM »
Parenting does not stop when they are 18. They need support through college and even young adulthood.i think 50 is just too old- particularly when you are a single parent.

Sure. Iím a healthy person living with access to health care and with financial means. My life span should put me in late 80s to mid 90s. I donít smoke, do drugs and rarely drink. I exercise around 20 hours a week. So, if those reasonable projections pan out, I should see my kid into the 40s.  That isnít far fetched or unreasonable.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #52 on: December 31, 2018, 02:26:23 PM »
It sounds like your minds made up as you seem to shoot down most opposite viewpoints.  Times ticking. If your going to do it, do it.  Your already going to be the "old dad" at every school/sporting event but as long as your not bothered by that you're good.   I would say stay in tip top shape (you control a lot of that).  There's already a bit of selfishness involved in waiting so long so don't compound by making your 20 something kid take care of sick parent if possible.  I know as a 45 year father of two teenagers it'd be tough to do on my own but definitely not impossible given the right support from others.

As far as money goes, that's why you have it. To spend on things that enrich your life.

Thank you for framing that it took me longer to find my now ex-partner and our 6 year struggle to have children as my selfish act for waiting so long. And yes, the dreaded old dad. You know whatís worse? The dreaded dad who is never around. And as for in shape, I do 20 hours of exercise a week, how are you going?

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #53 on: December 31, 2018, 02:32:06 PM »
And this is a totally personal question, but when a woman hears the clock ticking, it is in her early mid 30's and once that happens really a 5-7 year window to make it happen, or decide against having kids. Basically for most women, we hit an age, where we either "make it happen" or realize a different life plan.

While men do not "bear" the risks etc of advanced maternal pregnancy and birth, advanced paternal age is associated with increased birth defects and complications https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/11/181101133759.htm. And again being male does not escape the associated issues of being an old parent (and in this case an older single parent). I am curious why the do or die moment comes so much later for men? Are men not as aware of the association with being an older and various risk factors, or they are OK taking that risk?

Umm, some of us men arenít idiots. Trust me, I wish we had gotten pregnant 6 years ago, that was the plan, it was all on schedule and then nothing. Canít even begin to tell you what we went through and the pain. Our marriage didnít survive it. And thatís not uncommon. And yes, Iím aware of the research and that is definitely a concern. Yet, I also think that I will love my kid no matter what, special needs or not. Younger parents have special needs children all the time. These are things I need to work through and be comfortable with before committing.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #54 on: December 31, 2018, 02:40:29 PM »
Only you can make the decision, but I wouldn't let age be a determining factor if you're in good health and can honestly expect to remain that way.  Age can be an advantage. 

I got married at 42 and my child arrived just about the time I turned 47.  Yes, I am a 55-year-old with an eight-year-old daughter.  Yes, I will be 65 when I drive her off to attend college.  So what.  Age aside, I'm more fit than many men far younger than I am.  More importantly, having a child later in life meant I was far more mature and financially stable than I would have been if I had a child in my 20s or 30s.  I traveled the world and had the adventures I wanted to have earlier in my life, so having a child meant a new adventure, not giving up other things I wanted to do.  I FIREd and left my job behind to be a full-time dad when I was 52 and my daughter was 5.  Is having children late in life "selfish?"  Maybe it is, but I think my daughter is happier with her "old" dad who rides bikes with her home from school and shows up at every school event than she would be with a twenty-years younger and less mature version who goes to work every day. 

Being a single working dad is a lot of hard work.  I did it for six months when my daughter was five.  She was not an infant, I had no financial concerns, and I had both household help and an understanding employer.  And it was still really tough.  The experience gave me new respect for single parents who have to raise kids without the advantages I had. 

Are you in the US?  Your ability to take a year of family leave makes it sound like you live in Europe or perhaps the Antipodes.  If you can get a year of paid leave and you live in a country with reasonable day care options, raising a child and keeping on track for FIRE might be a lot easier than it would be in the US.  If you are close to FIRE, you might think about FIREing first and dedicating yourself to being a full-time dad. 

FWIW, I would urge you to think very hard about your thought about moving to a LCOL country with a young child.  That lifestyle might be your dream, but it might not be your child's.  There are a lot of great reasons to live abroad and travel (my family is doing that), but there's also a lot to be said for letting children have strong connections to family and community.  Living all their formative years and being educated in a foreign country can make kids aliens in their "home" country.  It can also cause problems with getting jobs.  And if you come from a country with strong medical/daycare/social/educational systems, you will want to think about what's going to replace them elsewhere. 

As far as I'm concerned, there's no reason not to travel with children.  My daughter has been flying on international flights since she was six weeks old.  Traveling with her is a real pleasure, and I am happy to travel with her alone when my wife can't be with us.  She handles 24-hour multi-leg flight itineraries like a pro.   


Whatever you do, I wish you good luck and happiness.

Thanks for sharing this. Iím in Australia where 1 year family leave is pretty much the norm. Iíd love to FIRE first but donít think thatís possible unless Iím older than 50 when I get started and 50 is about as late as Iíd like to go for a lot of the issues mentioned. Iíd still need to work for 3-4 more years to make sure I had a good stache to maintain everything.  The move to the LCOL is for 2 reasons, Iíd love the kid to be fluent in another language, particularly Spanish, and Iíd be able to afford more assistance easily, which would address many issues.

Also, yes, Iíd have extensive plans and contingencies if anything happened to me, so that wouldnít be an issue.

Left

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #55 on: December 31, 2018, 02:45:34 PM »
I know OP discounted the idea of adoption, but I'll bring the idea back up. Because of the posts above talking about "what ifs" with his health, and him being older already. What if his child is the unhealthy one? even if he lives to 80-90s, at some point he will die and be leaving a disabled/ill child behind. I saw he said he had a good network of people he would trust leaving his kid to if he passed, but would they be up to raising a kid that needs more help than a healthy kid? Sure he would be leaving money for the kid, but money doesn't raise a kid in itself.

With adoption, he could somewhat "pick" a healthy kid, instead of the genetic lottery of birth.

He could always FIRE and travel/homeschool the kid for the first decade too. No reason he has to give up traveling if he had a kid.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2018, 02:57:21 PM »
I know OP discounted the idea of adoption, but I'll bring the idea back up. Because of the posts above talking about "what ifs" with his health, and him being older already. What if his child is the unhealthy one? even if he lives to 80-90s, at some point he will die and be leaving a disabled/ill child behind. I saw he said he had a good network of people he would trust leaving his kid to if he passed, but would they be up to raising a kid that needs more help than a healthy kid? Sure he would be leaving money for the kid, but money doesn't raise a kid in itself.

With adoption, he could somewhat "pick" a healthy kid, instead of the genetic lottery of birth.

He could always FIRE and travel/homeschool the kid for the first decade too. No reason he has to give up traveling if he had a kid.

What happens when younger parents with special needs children die? This happens all the time. I have friends that will be caring for their child until they die and then what?

Anyways, adoption isnít a viable option for other reasons, that Iím not going into. Iíve worked through that one and it canít work so no need to discuss. If surrogacy wasnít possible at all, Iíd give up on that too.

partgypsy

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2018, 02:59:16 PM »
I know OP discounted the idea of adoption, but I'll bring the idea back up. Because of the posts above talking about "what ifs" with his health, and him being older already. What if his child is the unhealthy one? even if he lives to 80-90s, at some point he will die and be leaving a disabled/ill child behind. I saw he said he had a good network of people he would trust leaving his kid to if he passed, but would they be up to raising a kid that needs more help than a healthy kid? Sure he would be leaving money for the kid, but money doesn't raise a kid in itself.

With adoption, he could somewhat "pick" a healthy kid, instead of the genetic lottery of birth.

He could always FIRE and travel/homeschool the kid for the first decade too. No reason he has to give up traveling if he had a kid.

Adoption may or may not be an option for him either, depending on where he lives, what country he would adopt from. I know a lot of countries restrict by a) age of parent and b) whether they are single parent or not, and c) whether they are same sex parents adopting. I will assume he has explored his options.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2018, 03:03:10 PM by partgypsy »

EricEng

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #58 on: December 31, 2018, 03:00:50 PM »
No, itís not the $100k that would delay fire by 3-5 years, itís padding my fire for the kid to cover college and other expenses. I have a very good income. Iím not sure I get your argument, because wouldnít it apply to everyone? Anyone who will get old in your opinion will need a very fat fire, according to you. Thatís not the prevailing thinking. Youíre exaggerating something to make your point. My kid wonít have to worry about supporting me and my aged care issues will be dealt with, by me.
No, it applies to a single parent who is 50 years senior to their child who will expect zero help from their child.  Typically a parent is 20-30 years older.  Meaning when the adult is entering 70s, the child is already 40-50 with an established career, family, and home who has lots of resources (time, people, money) to help a parent age smoothly.

How much time have you spent around people 75-95?  Unless you are fine with living in an assisted living home much earlier than you would otherwise need.  My grandmother lived well in an apartment on her own to 91, BUT she needed small regular amounts of help from her children and grandkids.  This isn't even talking about the very real risk or cancer or dementia that is largely inevitable if you live long enough.  This is only exasperated being single.  At least with a married couple, the odds are much better one will stay physically/mentally sound longer and can help with those small tasks.

Left

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #59 on: December 31, 2018, 03:15:19 PM »
What happens when younger parents with special needs children die? This happens all the time. I have friends that will be caring for their child until they die and then what?

Anyways, adoption isnít a viable option for other reasons, that Iím not going into. Iíve worked through that one and it canít work so no need to discuss. If surrogacy wasnít possible at all, Iíd give up on that too.
If it won't work for other reasons, then it won't work.

I was only adding that younger parents tend to not die together, so one would be around to raise them. If a single parent, people also tend to have similarly aged family/friends to take care of their orphaned kids. I was thinking with you being in your 50s, your family/friends would be in their later years as well. That still doesn't help a kid if they are still having to look after an older "parent" whether that is yourself or the guardian you choose. Unless you have nephew /cousin/sibling/friends in their 30s, two decades younger than you. It isn't uncommon that a grandparent is raising their grandchildren because the parent for some reason is not around for example. But your parents (their grandparents, guessing are around 70-80 currently) would be dead by the time they hit their teen years unless your parents had you really young or they are up for raising kids at 100 years old.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2018, 03:17:41 PM by Left »

mm1970

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #60 on: December 31, 2018, 03:55:02 PM »
Really unfair to the child, unless you are the pinnacle of health and fitness. You will be nearing or at 70 by the time they are 18.  Lot of people can go down hill fast and unexpectedly in their 60s and there is no backup if something happens to you.  You also won't be fit and have the endurance a child deserves in their 7-15 stage when you should be getting them out and active.

There is also a real risk you will leave that child alone in the world in their early 20s as you reach mid 70s.  One parent being much older is fine, but intentionally having only one older parent is selfish.
Probably someone hit on this already - but I'm assuming he knows how healthy he is already? 

My father was in his mid-40s when his last 2 kids were born, he lived to be 81.
Many of my friends have had children in their late 40's, early 50s.
Some of my friends had older parents like me, and their parents lived to be 90+.

I assume that he'll have a will/ trust and someone willing to take in the child or children if something happens.  Because: crap happens, even when you are young.  I could make a laundry list of family and friends who died while in the military.  Fires.  Mudslides.  Floods.  Car accidents.

My friends adopted when in their later 50s.  They are in their 60s with elementary school children and they are in amazing health.  (More than enough energy to keep up with their children.) (AND they have older children to take in the younger ones if something horrible happened.)

mm1970

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #61 on: December 31, 2018, 04:00:16 PM »
Agree. I understand you're healthy now and have no reason to think you won't remain that way, but as a 20-something supporting an older parent through health issues while my friends travel the world with their parents and have 20 years left with them...I think it's just too late. I think my dad was too old when my parents had me (he was only 37 but he had known health issues even then) and it was a selfish decision. I'm sure you would be an amazing dad in the years you have with your kid, but I think you're really going to shortchange them by having a kid at your age.
This is an important side I forgot.  Your child would just be spreading there wings and looking for job opportunities as you reading early 70s and decent chance start needing some help (physical and/or mental).  These days the young adult will likely have to move a lot for career advancement, but if they need to assist caring for you that will complicate things.  My parents are mid 70s and they are just realizing they will need help soon which means they are moving near me and I need to stay put. 

You are putting an immense burden on your child for selfish reasons.  They should be focused on job or finding and starting a family in their 20s, not caring for a parent 50 years their senior.

Or...he could not be a jerk who expects his child to give up everything for him?

I mean I get it - a lot of families have this dynamic.  A parent gets sick, and the child (usually a daughter), takes care of them.  My mom did this with her father when my grandma died.  My grandpa wasn't sick, he just needed help with cooking and cleaning.

You realize, though, that it's entirely possible for this to not happen?  I mean, I loved my parents but this was NOT our family dynamic.  We were expected to leave the house at 18-20 (forever) and we were not expected to move back home to care for elderly parents.  A visit here and there, sure. 

I'm a red panda

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #62 on: December 31, 2018, 04:03:55 PM »
It sounds like your mind is made up. Why are you asking here, if you shoot down anyone who cautions against it?

Since you put fatherhood in terms of money, what are your thoughts if you spend $100k and don't get a child? You can't buy a baby and pregnancy doesn't guarantee one. Reproductive fertility doesn't even guarantee a pregnancy.
I spent nearly $20,000 in medical bills for my first son, who I was pregnant with for 29 weeks and didn't get to bring home. That was a natural, low risk (we were both under 35 and healthy) pregnancy.  Older sperm carries risks just like older eggs do.

mm1970

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #63 on: December 31, 2018, 04:06:19 PM »
No, itís not the $100k that would delay fire by 3-5 years, itís padding my fire for the kid to cover college and other expenses. I have a very good income. Iím not sure I get your argument, because wouldnít it apply to everyone? Anyone who will get old in your opinion will need a very fat fire, according to you. Thatís not the prevailing thinking. Youíre exaggerating something to make your point. My kid wonít have to worry about supporting me and my aged care issues will be dealt with, by me.
No, it applies to a single parent who is 50 years senior to their child who will expect zero help from their child.  Typically a parent is 20-30 years older.  Meaning when the adult is entering 70s, the child is already 40-50 with an established career, family, and home who has lots of resources (time, people, money) to help a parent age smoothly.

How much time have you spent around people 75-95?  Unless you are fine with living in an assisted living home much earlier than you would otherwise need.  My grandmother lived well in an apartment on her own to 91, BUT she needed small regular amounts of help from her children and grandkids.  This isn't even talking about the very real risk or cancer or dementia that is largely inevitable if you live long enough.  This is only exasperated being single.  At least with a married couple, the odds are much better one will stay physically/mentally sound longer and can help with those small tasks.

I know lots of older people in their 70s and 80s, including relatives.

I have money.

But I also have a full time job and 2 children.  We are in our late 40's/ early 50's.  We don't live near family.  I'm not sure why I should be expected to help them age smoothly?  I think they call it the sandwich generation for a reason. 

In my husband's family, it's the retired family members in their 60s who help the 80 and 90 somethings age smoothly.

Awesomeness

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #64 on: December 31, 2018, 04:59:54 PM »
If I was in your shoes Iíd travel the world and find other ways to satisfy that parental need inside me.  It is hard being a parent!  I divorced last year, my ex is not in our lives because heís an alcoholic, he chose a different path and threw us away. I have two grown children, one son 21 still in college so Iím helping him launch and a daughter, 25, thatís married but I donít feel good about the man she married.   I feel like a single mother, anything and everything they may need in life now or later falls on me if they canít do it themselves. We donít live near family and as it is my son goes to school states away from my daughter and I. 


I know I donít have to feel this way but itís how it is for now.  Iím constantly telling them to stay close to each other if something happens to me. My future plans involve putting them first and me second.  Iím 48 and take good care of myself so I can be there for them as long as possible. I hope to someday help them buy homes and leave them a nice inheritance, itís always on my mind. I fear losing them too, or outliving them. Ugh the worries!

I tell them they donít have to have children.  I respect their decisions no matter what they choose but to think extra carefully about becoming a parent. Right now they both have said they arenít set on having kids. Wonít lie Iím extremely relieved to here them say that.  If I become a grandparent of course Iíd be happy but thereís another life Iíll feel responsible for, that Iíd love no matter what and feel the need to protect and be there for them as much as possible.

Itís just very hard. Still leveling out from a traumatic divorce, we used to be a close family. 

And donít think you will feel this loss of being childless forever, life happens and we change. You may be totally ok with it someday.   

If you do choose to have a child, just keep on trucking like you are now, staying healthy and doing the best you can.  I was a sahm and I donít regret it at all. Best thing I did for my family even though Iím paying for that w no job skills. I can survive on my divorce settling thankfully.


Yíall w your ďwhat ifísĒ, holy scary crap!  Life is full of what ifs.  Mrthatsdifferent doesnít come off as a total idiot that didnít think of these scenarios.  Makes me feel like I should crawl and hide in a hole.   

Good people should have children or find a way to influence them.  More power to them.

Annie101

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #65 on: December 31, 2018, 05:19:15 PM »
 I think you should go for it,  as soon as possible!  Your age is a concern,  but as someone else mentioned, there is a likelihood that you will not be single forever .   It sounds like you have already traveled and really want a child, and have the resources. 

Anon648

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #66 on: December 31, 2018, 05:24:56 PM »
Iím struggling with this and trying to work through it. Iím single now and fine with it but thereís a part of me that still would like to raise a child, but Iíll be 50 in a couple of years. If that doesnít happen, then the plan will be, live my best life traveling the world. Honestly not sure what path to go down as the former is fraught with many concerns. But Iíd be such a great dad!

So, Option A, the kid: Iíd have to the surrogacy route (please donít suggest other ways, theyíve all been thought through and wonít work for various reasons). Most places that were more affordable have closed to single men so that basically leaves the US, where it will cost over $100k.  If I go that direction, it would mean putting my FIRE plans on hold for probably 3-5 extra years as all my plans now are focused me as a single guy, not a single parent. Thatís not horrible, but to be honest, Iíd love to be a SAHP for my kid as much as possible and not work, especially the first 5-7 years, so FIRE would be ideal during that time. It also just feels like so much money, when most people have them for free.  Depressing.

Option B: accept that Iíll always be childless, focus on being child free and a great and generous uncle and FIRE in 4 years, spending my life traveling the globe. Sounds great and I love it, except nothing obsesses me more than watching parents with kids and imagining what my life would be like if I had that? Iím so envious. I think I would trade anything, but then, push come to shove, I wonder because I worry that the cost is too great.

Anyways, love your thoughts, but please be gentle as this is quite personal and sensitive and Iím not looking at getting into an argument with anyone. If you canít have kids and you want them, it sucks so much you wouldnít believe it.

I'll offer my perspective as a relatively new parent. My wife and I had our first baby about a year ago. We're in our mid-30s, in excellent health, and we live close to her retired parents, so we have an extra layer of support. We aren't close to FIRE but we have a lot saved and don't really have any worries around money. Even with all of that, things are often stressful. We sleep less, we spend a lot less time with our friends (this may sound like a minor gripe but the big drop in meaningful social interaction definitely affects us), we struggle to balance work and baby care, we do fewer intellectually stimulating activities. "Leisure" time is maybe an hour after the baby goes to sleep and after we finish cleaning before we sleep ourselves. We worry about the baby when she has a fever, when she doesn't sleep, when she doesn't eat, when she's extremely fussy for some unknown reason. And these stresses would undoubtedly be harder to deal with if we didn't have each other. Of course, there is a rich reward in exchange for all of that as we watched our daughter grow from an infant into a baby and now see her growing from a baby into a toddler. It's heart-melting when she smiles at us, or when she calls for my wife with "Mama." We also frequently take her out with us in the city we live in and do whatever activities we can with her, which is a joy. But the fact that all of this is ultimately very rewarding doesn't make it easy. I'm very happy that we decided to have a child and very excited to see her growing up more and more every day, but it's deeply challenging in many ways.

If you choose to do this by yourself it will be years of ceaseless devotion through sleepless nights when your baby is sick, or has colic, or is simply experiencing sleep regression, frantically eating cereal for dinner because your baby can't fall asleep and screams the moment you leave her, rushing to a public bathroom because your baby let loose with a diaper-busting poop the one time that week your schedule permitted you to take her with you to meet a friend, and so on. Obviously, billions of people throughout the world raise children safely to adulthood, so it's not like any of these early challenges are insurmountable. But I think it's worth thinking long and hard about whether you want to devote years of your life to doing this alone. As an aside, if you have the ability to hire sometime to help full-time at least a few days a week for the first couple years, I'm certain that would make a huge difference and provide you with some breathing room.

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #67 on: December 31, 2018, 06:13:11 PM »
The OP will make his own decision and I wish him the very best however things turn out. I have two kiddos we had to work rather hard to have. The first year is the most difficult thing ever. The hardest thing I have ever done.  It then it starts to get a little bit better, and a little bit easier. At some point I looked up and realized that my life was so filled with joy and love that I hadn’t imagined it could be like that.

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #68 on: December 31, 2018, 06:53:00 PM »
Agree. I understand you're healthy now and have no reason to think you won't remain that way, but as a 20-something supporting an older parent through health issues while my friends travel the world with their parents and have 20 years left with them...I think it's just too late. I think my dad was too old when my parents had me (he was only 37 but he had known health issues even then) and it was a selfish decision. I'm sure you would be an amazing dad in the years you have with your kid, but I think you're really going to shortchange them by having a kid at your age.
This is an important side I forgot.  Your child would just be spreading there wings and looking for job opportunities as you reading early 70s and decent chance start needing some help (physical and/or mental).  These days the young adult will likely have to move a lot for career advancement, but if they need to assist caring for you that will complicate things.  My parents are mid 70s and they are just realizing they will need help soon which means they are moving near me and I need to stay put. 

You are putting an immense burden on your child for selfish reasons.  They should be focused on job or finding and starting a family in their 20s, not caring for a parent 50 years their senior.

We'll, if he's FIREing when he says he will his assets should cover health care, and any other type of care he'll need. The kid won't be on the hook for any type of parental support. So the only selfish part may be "congrats on graduating from college,now I'm going to die and leave you alone"

Only?? I don't give two shits about the money, and my parents so far have refused all financial help I've offered them. Furthermore, they live 8 hours away, so I do what I can when I visit but I'm not involved in daily life help. It's the emotional stuff I'm thinking about. What's hard is spending my days worried about my dad's health while my friends continue to experience life with their parents as equals, rather than someone they're caring for.

In a healthy parental/child relationship, this is the stage where it really bears fruit. My friends travel with their parents, go to shows and dinner with them, and just have daily life experiences with them. My dad's cognitive function is slipping, my mom is exhausted from caring for him. (She's 8 years younger and so far pretty healthy.) I just am incredibly jealous of losing this time with both of them to my dad being old.

It's also a unique kind of loneliness to be experiencing this while my friends' parents are still healthy. My friends care a lot & ask after my dad constantly, but no one else really understand what it's like to wonder a little more every time you see your dad if it's the last time, or to constantly have a running script in my brain thinking of how he's doing and what he needs. I imagine by the time you hit 40 or so you at least have a little more community when you find yourself in that situation.

Sorry, I'm in the thick of all this having returned from Christmas with the family a couple days ago, and perhaps that's coloring my perceptions a bit more than it should. But I just don't think many other people commenting here are doing a good job putting themselves in the child's shoes. My childhood was wonderful--I didn't know any different than having a dad in his 40's and 50's, and that seems to be the life stage of most of the parents commenting. But being a 20 something with an almost 70 year old parent is hard and I wouldn't deliberately choose that path for anyone.

It does feel like your projecting a lot. Iím a lot older than you but my parents are close to their 70s. Both are active as hell and donít need me looking after them or worrying about them. Hell, my grandmother is in her 90s and still lives alone and looks after herself. We arenít stress balls worrying about them. Sure, that may happen but hasnít yet. Nothing in life is guaranteed and your life and experience is not the same as everyone elseís. I was raised by a single mom, but you know who stepped up, my grandfathers. They were older and both invested a lot of time in me, because they had time to give. I would have taken a father at any age over one that was absent.

Iíd have to agree that there is a LOT of projection going on here. I was raised by a grandmother who was 57 when I was born. Sheís almost 90 now. Sheís slowing down but still relatively healthy. The fact that Iím going to lose her 30 years earlier than I would if she were my mother doesnít consume me. It is what it is and Iím grateful for the time we have shared. Iím also not convinced that losing a parent is significantly easier in any decade of life. What youíre going through sounds like itís really difficult, but blaming your father for bringing you onto existence when he was 37 seems irrational.

accolay

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #69 on: December 31, 2018, 10:45:09 PM »
I read the OP... So, adoption, fostering and finding a partner who already has a kid are all out as options?

You have to have a kid that comes from your own balls to make you feel complete? Just curious.

Youíre not being curious, youíre being mean and as mentioned, I wonít spend time addressing things Iíve considered but wonít work for various reasons, especially not to satisfy your ďcuriosityĒ.

No, really am curious. And was paraphrasing Dave Chapelle BTW. Not sure why you're here even asking about what you should do since your mind is already made up. Time's a ticking...

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #70 on: December 31, 2018, 11:34:46 PM »
No, itís not the $100k that would delay fire by 3-5 years, itís padding my fire for the kid to cover college and other expenses. I have a very good income. Iím not sure I get your argument, because wouldnít it apply to everyone? Anyone who will get old in your opinion will need a very fat fire, according to you. Thatís not the prevailing thinking. Youíre exaggerating something to make your point. My kid wonít have to worry about supporting me and my aged care issues will be dealt with, by me.
No, it applies to a single parent who is 50 years senior to their child who will expect zero help from their child.  Typically a parent is 20-30 years older.  Meaning when the adult is entering 70s, the child is already 40-50 with an established career, family, and home who has lots of resources (time, people, money) to help a parent age smoothly.

How much time have you spent around people 75-95?  Unless you are fine with living in an assisted living home much earlier than you would otherwise need.  My grandmother lived well in an apartment on her own to 91, BUT she needed small regular amounts of help from her children and grandkids.  This isn't even talking about the very real risk or cancer or dementia that is largely inevitable if you live long enough.  This is only exasperated being single.  At least with a married couple, the odds are much better one will stay physically/mentally sound longer and can help with those small tasks.

Are you only focusing on married couples who stay together that long? Or a partner doesnít die early, leaving the kids with a single parent still? Remember half of marriages end in divorce, so thatís a lot of kids dealing with single older parents.

EricEng

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #71 on: December 31, 2018, 11:37:05 PM »
Yíall w your ďwhat ifísĒ, holy scary crap!  Life is full of what ifs. 
Getting old is not a "what if", it is inevitable.

At 50+ you are effectively becoming a single grandparent raising a child with little family safety net.  Can it be done without issue?  Yes, as many people have attested (availability bias).  Is it ideal? No.  Does it have a very large, unnecessary amount of risk?  Yes.  No one passes up growing up with two parents 20-30 years their senior for the 50+ year old single grandparent without a really good reason.  It's Plan C or D at best, but you want to use it as Plan A.  No one can stop or change your mind at this point.  Doesn't change the fact it is a selfish decision at the cost of the child.
Are you only focusing on married couples who stay together that long? Or a partner doesnít die early, leaving the kids with a single parent still? Remember half of marriages end in divorce, so thatís a lot of kids dealing with single older parents.
Incorrect statistic based on a study of the 1980s.  It is flawed because many divorcees remarry and divorce multiple times.  The rate is also dropping a lot lately with new generations.

Regardless, my point was that a normal aged couple (who divorces or not), still has a safety net.  If one parent falls, the second is still likely alive and both have potential to remarry.  They are also young enough to have grandparents who would be the same age difference as you from the child which generates 4 more possible support routes.  That couple can also have more than one child to help support them or a sibling (not financially necessarily) when they are older.  Is that necessary or the case in all family dynamics?  No, but I feel it works better.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2018, 11:44:30 PM by EricEng »

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #72 on: December 31, 2018, 11:37:11 PM »
I read the OP... So, adoption, fostering and finding a partner who already has a kid are all out as options?

You have to have a kid that comes from your own balls to make you feel complete? Just curious.

Youíre not being curious, youíre being mean and as mentioned, I wonít spend time addressing things Iíve considered but wonít work for various reasons, especially not to satisfy your ďcuriosityĒ.

No, really am curious. And was paraphrasing Dave Chapelle BTW. Not sure why you're here even asking about what you should do since your mind is already made up. Time's a ticking...

What are you doing here when Iím trying to work through something personal and sensitive and all you have to contribute is cruelty and snark? Iím not here to satisfy your curiosity and you have nothing of value to offer, so please find someone else to menace.

v8rx7guy

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #73 on: December 31, 2018, 11:37:50 PM »
My gut instinct is to advise "no" to becoming a single father at 50 years old.  I can very much relate to the deep desire to have offspring of my own as it was a concern earlier in my life that I would not be able to have them, so I went thru a lot of the inner turmoil of this situation.  I did end up having two boys of my own, but my goodness that first year is insane even with a traditional family unit.  I cant imagine taking that on as a 50 year old single man.  But, you're going to do what you want, but if it were me... I would go the fun uncle / mentor kids route.  Keep us updated.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #74 on: December 31, 2018, 11:39:39 PM »
Really unfair to the child, unless you are the pinnacle of health and fitness. You will be nearing or at 70 by the time they are 18.  Lot of people can go down hill fast and unexpectedly in their 60s and there is no backup if something happens to you.  You also won't be fit and have the endurance a child deserves in their 7-15 stage when you should be getting them out and active.

There is also a real risk you will leave that child alone in the world in their early 20s as you reach mid 70s.  One parent being much older is fine, but intentionally having only one older parent is selfish.
Probably someone hit on this already - but I'm assuming he knows how healthy he is already? 

My father was in his mid-40s when his last 2 kids were born, he lived to be 81.
Many of my friends have had children in their late 40's, early 50s.
Some of my friends had older parents like me, and their parents lived to be 90+.

I assume that he'll have a will/ trust and someone willing to take in the child or children if something happens.  Because: crap happens, even when you are young.  I could make a laundry list of family and friends who died while in the military.  Fires.  Mudslides.  Floods.  Car accidents.

My friends adopted when in their later 50s.  They are in their 60s with elementary school children and they are in amazing health.  (More than enough energy to keep up with their children.) (AND they have older children to take in the younger ones if something horrible happened.)

Thank you!

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #75 on: December 31, 2018, 11:48:04 PM »
It sounds like your mind is made up. Why are you asking here, if you shoot down anyone who cautions against it?

Since you put fatherhood in terms of money, what are your thoughts if you spend $100k and don't get a child? You can't buy a baby and pregnancy doesn't guarantee one. Reproductive fertility doesn't even guarantee a pregnancy.
I spent nearly $20,000 in medical bills for my first son, who I was pregnant with for 29 weeks and didn't get to bring home. That was a natural, low risk (we were both under 35 and healthy) pregnancy.  Older sperm carries risks just like older eggs do.

My mind isnít made up, but itís leaning that way. What you call shooting down is me reflecting on the various issues and addressing them. Most of the concerns are valid and I need to know Iím ready for this challenge. I donít want to have a child to see it get disadvantaged by my choice, thatís not the point. But Iím definitely getting defensive at some of the things mentioned. I know so many people that had kids young who were unprepared and were not great parents, so younger equals better isnít always true.

And ya, the issue of spending the money and still being childless bothers me as well. Iíve already spent over $30k and without a child and heartache to last several lifetimes. If I do this, itís the last shot and then I will have to move my heart on. If you think any of this is easy for me, think again.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #76 on: December 31, 2018, 11:55:52 PM »
If I was in your shoes Iíd travel the world and find other ways to satisfy that parental need inside me.  It is hard being a parent!  I divorced last year, my ex is not in our lives because heís an alcoholic, he chose a different path and threw us away. I have two grown children, one son 21 still in college so Iím helping him launch and a daughter, 25, thatís married but I donít feel good about the man she married.   I feel like a single mother, anything and everything they may need in life now or later falls on me if they canít do it themselves. We donít live near family and as it is my son goes to school states away from my daughter and I. 


I know I donít have to feel this way but itís how it is for now.  Iím constantly telling them to stay close to each other if something happens to me. My future plans involve putting them first and me second.  Iím 48 and take good care of myself so I can be there for them as long as possible. I hope to someday help them buy homes and leave them a nice inheritance, itís always on my mind. I fear losing them too, or outliving them. Ugh the worries!

I tell them they donít have to have children.  I respect their decisions no matter what they choose but to think extra carefully about becoming a parent. Right now they both have said they arenít set on having kids. Wonít lie Iím extremely relieved to here them say that.  If I become a grandparent of course Iíd be happy but thereís another life Iíll feel responsible for, that Iíd love no matter what and feel the need to protect and be there for them as much as possible.

Itís just very hard. Still leveling out from a traumatic divorce, we used to be a close family. 

And donít think you will feel this loss of being childless forever, life happens and we change. You may be totally ok with it someday.   

If you do choose to have a child, just keep on trucking like you are now, staying healthy and doing the best you can.  I was a sahm and I donít regret it at all. Best thing I did for my family even though Iím paying for that w no job skills. I can survive on my divorce settling thankfully.


Yíall w your ďwhat ifísĒ, holy scary crap!  Life is full of what ifs.  Mrthatsdifferent doesnít come off as a total idiot that didnít think of these scenarios.  Makes me feel like I should crawl and hide in a hole.   

Good people should have children or find a way to influence them.  More power to them.

Thanks for sharing that. I feel for what youíre going through. Does anyone have it easy as a Parent? Whether married or not, younger or older, with money or without? Being responsible for another life is hard and itís constant. I donít have illusions. Yes, I could chose th easy way and not have kids, but do you know the biggest risk group for suicides and early death? Single, childless men.

Iím amazed at all the pain with children everyone is mentioning and none of the joy of being a parent.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #77 on: January 01, 2019, 12:01:40 AM »
Iím struggling with this and trying to work through it. Iím single now and fine with it but thereís a part of me that still would like to raise a child, but Iíll be 50 in a couple of years. If that doesnít happen, then the plan will be, live my best life traveling the world. Honestly not sure what path to go down as the former is fraught with many concerns. But Iíd be such a great dad!

So, Option A, the kid: Iíd have to the surrogacy route (please donít suggest other ways, theyíve all been thought through and wonít work for various reasons). Most places that were more affordable have closed to single men so that basically leaves the US, where it will cost over $100k.  If I go that direction, it would mean putting my FIRE plans on hold for probably 3-5 extra years as all my plans now are focused me as a single guy, not a single parent. Thatís not horrible, but to be honest, Iíd love to be a SAHP for my kid as much as possible and not work, especially the first 5-7 years, so FIRE would be ideal during that time. It also just feels like so much money, when most people have them for free.  Depressing.

Option B: accept that Iíll always be childless, focus on being child free and a great and generous uncle and FIRE in 4 years, spending my life traveling the globe. Sounds great and I love it, except nothing obsesses me more than watching parents with kids and imagining what my life would be like if I had that? Iím so envious. I think I would trade anything, but then, push come to shove, I wonder because I worry that the cost is too great.

Anyways, love your thoughts, but please be gentle as this is quite personal and sensitive and Iím not looking at getting into an argument with anyone. If you canít have kids and you want them, it sucks so much you wouldnít believe it.

I'll offer my perspective as a relatively new parent. My wife and I had our first baby about a year ago. We're in our mid-30s, in excellent health, and we live close to her retired parents, so we have an extra layer of support. We aren't close to FIRE but we have a lot saved and don't really have any worries around money. Even with all of that, things are often stressful. We sleep less, we spend a lot less time with our friends (this may sound like a minor gripe but the big drop in meaningful social interaction definitely affects us), we struggle to balance work and baby care, we do fewer intellectually stimulating activities. "Leisure" time is maybe an hour after the baby goes to sleep and after we finish cleaning before we sleep ourselves. We worry about the baby when she has a fever, when she doesn't sleep, when she doesn't eat, when she's extremely fussy for some unknown reason. And these stresses would undoubtedly be harder to deal with if we didn't have each other. Of course, there is a rich reward in exchange for all of that as we watched our daughter grow from an infant into a baby and now see her growing from a baby into a toddler. It's heart-melting when she smiles at us, or when she calls for my wife with "Mama." We also frequently take her out with us in the city we live in and do whatever activities we can with her, which is a joy. But the fact that all of this is ultimately very rewarding doesn't make it easy. I'm very happy that we decided to have a child and very excited to see her growing up more and more every day, but it's deeply challenging in many ways.

If you choose to do this by yourself it will be years of ceaseless devotion through sleepless nights when your baby is sick, or has colic, or is simply experiencing sleep regression, frantically eating cereal for dinner because your baby can't fall asleep and screams the moment you leave her, rushing to a public bathroom because your baby let loose with a diaper-busting poop the one time that week your schedule permitted you to take her with you to meet a friend, and so on. Obviously, billions of people throughout the world raise children safely to adulthood, so it's not like any of these early challenges are insurmountable. But I think it's worth thinking long and hard about whether you want to devote years of your life to doing this alone. As an aside, if you have the ability to hire sometime to help full-time at least a few days a week for the first couple years, I'm certain that would make a huge difference and provide you with some breathing room.

Thanks. Iíve done all of that with my siblings and other kids, and it doesnít go in forever, but Iím sure it feels like that now for you. The first year Iíd be around my family as I can take a whole year off work with job guaranteed to be there when I go back. Year 2-4, Iíd have assistance. Year 5 and beyond Iíd be a SAHP with additional assistance and kid would be in school. Itís doable.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #78 on: January 01, 2019, 12:03:22 AM »
The OP will make his own decision and I wish him the very best however things turn out. I have two kiddos we had to work rather hard to have. The first year is the most difficult thing ever. The hardest thing I have ever done.  It then it starts to get a little bit better, and a little bit easier. At some point I looked up and realized that my life was so filled with joy and love that I hadnít imagined it could be like that.

Beautiful. One thing I worked out, no twins or a second one. One will be enough for me, following MMM guidance on that and knowing that I couldnít manage 2 alone.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #79 on: January 01, 2019, 12:09:09 AM »
Yíall w your ďwhat ifísĒ, holy scary crap!  Life is full of what ifs. 
Getting old is not a "what if", it is inevitable.

At 50+ you are effectively becoming a single grandparent raising a child with little family safety net.  Can it be done without issue?  Yes, as many people have attested (availability bias).  Is it ideal? No.  Does it have a very large, unnecessary amount of risk?  Yes.  No one passes up growing up with two parents 20-30 years their senior for the 50+ year old single grandparent without a really good reason.  It's Plan C or D at best, but you want to use it as Plan A.  No one can stop or change your mind at this point.  Doesn't change the fact it is a selfish decision at the cost of the child.
Are you only focusing on married couples who stay together that long? Or a partner doesnít die early, leaving the kids with a single parent still? Remember half of marriages end in divorce, so thatís a lot of kids dealing with single older parents.
Incorrect statistic based on a study of the 1980s.  It is flawed because many divorcees remarry and divorce multiple times.  The rate is also dropping a lot lately with new generations.

Regardless, my point was that a normal aged couple (who divorces or not), still has a safety net.  If one parent falls, the second is still likely alive and both have potential to remarry.  They are also young enough to have grandparents who would be the same age difference as you from the child which generates 4 more possible support routes.  That couple can also have more than one child to help support them or a sibling (not financially necessarily) when they are older.  Is that necessary or the case in all family dynamics?  No, but I feel it works better.

There are enough people in this world. Arguably anyone having a child or anyone having more than 1 is making a selfish decision. Anyone having s child without their finances in place is making a selfish decision. I could go on, so could you if you werenít being so myopic. We all donít get fairy tale families and yet many of us survive and thrive. Nature finds a way. So yeah, it might be selfish, but that would group me with the norm.

Villanelle

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #80 on: January 01, 2019, 01:08:49 AM »
The OP will make his own decision and I wish him the very best however things turn out. I have two kiddos we had to work rather hard to have. The first year is the most difficult thing ever. The hardest thing I have ever done.  It then it starts to get a little bit better, and a little bit easier. At some point I looked up and realized that my life was so filled with joy and love that I hadnít imagined it could be like that.

Beautiful. One thing I worked out, no twins or a second one. One will be enough for me, following MMM guidance on that and knowing that I couldnít manage 2 alone.

And if the surrogate pregnancy results in twins?  If you are dead set against that, just make sure you include selective reduction in the contract (assuming that's legal) and the the surrogate is 100% in board with doing so. 

Hula Hoop

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #81 on: January 01, 2019, 01:57:50 AM »
I don't see your age as a huge issue.  My husband was 46 and 49 when our girls were born and he is a fabulous dad.  It's true that there are greater risks since he is older but I'm 10 years younger.  I guess as a single parent this risk would be greater.  Do you have family who could take over if something were to happen to you while the child is still a minor?

Have you investigated fostering in your state?  That's what I would do in your shoes.

ETA - as others have said, being a single parent, especially during those first 3-4 years will be insanely hard.  I found it incredibly hard even as a married parent.  My younger daughter was a truly rotten sleeper - did not sleep through the night until she was almost 2.  She used to wake up around 4 times a night until that age.  And with both kids the first 6 months or so were the hardest thing I've ever been through.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 02:09:49 AM by Hula Hoop »

I'm a red panda

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #82 on: January 01, 2019, 06:05:44 AM »
It sounds like your mind is made up. Why are you asking here, if you shoot down anyone who cautions against it?

Since you put fatherhood in terms of money, what are your thoughts if you spend $100k and don't get a child? You can't buy a baby and pregnancy doesn't guarantee one. Reproductive fertility doesn't even guarantee a pregnancy.
I spent nearly $20,000 in medical bills for my first son, who I was pregnant with for 29 weeks and didn't get to bring home. That was a natural, low risk (we were both under 35 and healthy) pregnancy.  Older sperm carries risks just like older eggs do.

My mind isnít made up, but itís leaning that way. What you call shooting down is me reflecting on the various issues and addressing them. Most of the concerns are valid and I need to know Iím ready for this challenge. I donít want to have a child to see it get disadvantaged by my choice, thatís not the point. But Iím definitely getting defensive at some of the things mentioned. I know so many people that had kids young who were unprepared and were not great parents, so younger equals better isnít always true.

And ya, the issue of spending the money and still being childless bothers me as well. Iíve already spent over $30k and without a child and heartache to last several lifetimes. If I do this, itís the last shot and then I will have to move my heart on. If you think any of this is easy for me, think again.

My now daughter (nearly 2) is an incredible joy. But if I knew the life changing, soul crushing heartache my son would bring, I probably would have stayed child free. I never imagined a worse case as bad as it was. Once we lost him though, the need to have a baby was huger than it had been before.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 07:30:51 AM by I'm a red panda »

mrmoonymartian

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #83 on: January 01, 2019, 06:50:15 AM »
Breastfeeding will be difficult.

big_slacker

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #84 on: January 01, 2019, 07:05:28 AM »
As someone who had kids relatively late I think the upside of doing this late in life is maturity. You probably have your shit together way more than someone in their mid 20's, emotionally, financially, etc. and will be able to provide great stability, love and life advice.

That said I can't imagine wanting to be a single parent in your 50's. It's an insane amount of work and is physically, mentally and emotionally draining. It puts MASSIVE constraints on your free time, lifestyle flexibility and finances. I'd also be a bit worried about later life health and how that might affect a kid or teen.

I'd weigh very carefully whether this is a grass is always greener type of thing or truly something you want to commit to. Cause it's a hell of a commitment, especially in the way you're talking about doing it. Looking at it from my perspective as a 44 year old dad of two young ones, no way in hell I'd do it at 50. But of course you're not me. ;)

Thanks buddy for the caution. The problem is I’ll never know if I can handle it or not until I do it. And come on, there are a shit ton of parents who are young and active and really bad at parenting. People adapt, I’ll just have to be conscious and smart about everything, but that’s what parents should be doing anyways.

Just getting back to this. No doubt you'll adapt and get through it. My point was just that you might very well end up in a situation where you're living in self imposed struggle vs sipping mai tais by the pool. You may very well feel the struggle is worth it, but go in eyes open. The responsibilities of parenting put great demands and stress on you. There are of course great moments where your heart swells with pride, or you choke back tears from the little guys doing something so sweet. But that is 10%, there is the 90% of work and drudgery to get there. :D

I'm a red panda

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #85 on: January 01, 2019, 07:31:48 AM »
Breastfeeding will be difficult.

It's difficult even when you have mammary glands.
Thankfully there are plenty of ways to feed a baby.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 03:06:39 PM by I'm a red panda »

aneel

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #86 on: January 01, 2019, 09:28:47 AM »
What @Awesomeness  said. Do it! It sounds like you already have regret over the topic and that will only grow. As the mom in a family where my husband is the primary parent I would say just be ready to have to work to find your fellow parent tribe. There are plenty of mom groups out there, but a sad lack of dad groups. You'll just be continuing to turn the tide of gender stereotypes - an added benefit beyond the obvious.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #87 on: January 01, 2019, 03:00:49 PM »
The OP will make his own decision and I wish him the very best however things turn out. I have two kiddos we had to work rather hard to have. The first year is the most difficult thing ever. The hardest thing I have ever done.  It then it starts to get a little bit better, and a little bit easier. At some point I looked up and realized that my life was so filled with joy and love that I hadnít imagined it could be like that.

Beautiful. One thing I worked out, no twins or a second one. One will be enough for me, following MMM guidance on that and knowing that I couldnít manage 2 alone.

And if the surrogate pregnancy results in twins?  If you are dead set against that, just make sure you include selective reduction in the contract (assuming that's legal) and the the surrogate is 100% in board with doing so.

Deadset against? No, just wonít consciously try for them, wonít have more than one embryo implanted. If it happens, it would mean a major change to FIRE plans cause Iím pretty sure Iíd need to work much longer, but Iíd do that if I had to.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #88 on: January 01, 2019, 03:04:02 PM »
Breastfeeding will be difficult.

Cute. I wasnít breastfed. Hands up for all of us that werenít? We all somehow made it.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #89 on: January 01, 2019, 03:05:03 PM »
What @Awesomeness  said. Do it! It sounds like you already have regret over the topic and that will only grow. As the mom in a family where my husband is the primary parent I would say just be ready to have to work to find your fellow parent tribe. There are plenty of mom groups out there, but a sad lack of dad groups. You'll just be continuing to turn the tide of gender stereotypes - an added benefit beyond the obvious.

Challenging gender stereotypes seems to be my lot in life ;-)

I'm a red panda

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #90 on: January 01, 2019, 07:05:40 PM »


I vote to go for adoption.  Help a child that already has had bad luck.   But dont create more situations in the world where the possibility of disaster is relatively high.

You do know that typically a 50 year old can't adopt an infant, right? Most agencies have age limits or age gap limits. So this would mean older child adoption only. That's a very different ballgame. (Besides that OP already said this wasn't a viable option for him...)

Case

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #91 on: January 01, 2019, 07:14:47 PM »


I vote to go for adoption.  Help a child that already has had bad luck.   But dont create more situations in the world where the possibility of disaster is relatively high.

You do know that typically a 50 year old can't adopt an infant, right? Most agencies have age limits or age gap limits. So this would mean older child adoption only. That's a very different ballgame. (Besides that OP already said this wasn't a viable option for him...)

No, i didnt know that.  It sounds like the adoption agencies are concerned for the very same reasons.
However, i am not suggesting the OP adopt an older child.  I know that those situations are frought with difficulties.

I deleted my original response as i felt i shoudl give this more thought.




Kay-Ell

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #92 on: January 02, 2019, 08:56:46 AM »


I vote to go for adoption.  Help a child that already has had bad luck.   But dont create more situations in the world where the possibility of disaster is relatively high.

You do know that typically a 50 year old can't adopt an infant, right? Most agencies have age limits or age gap limits. So this would mean older child adoption only. That's a very different ballgame. (Besides that OP already said this wasn't a viable option for him...)

No, i didnt know that.  It sounds like the adoption agencies are concerned for the very same reasons.
However, i am not suggesting the OP adopt an older child.  I know that those situations are frought with difficulties.

I deleted my original response as i felt i shoudl give this more thought.

Adopting an infant from foster care is possible as an older, single parent in the US. OP is not in the US however, so his requirements may be different. But even if theyíre not, foster care, by its nature, is uncertain with no guarantee in adoption. Many people, especially those  who have gone through infertility, as the OP has, arenít emotionally ready to invest in a child for months or years without knowing whether they will be able to adopt. Itís a deeply personal choice that isnít for everyone (and i say this as someone who did adopt through foster care with no regrets). The whole ďif you want a child you should just adopt oneĒ rhetoric is simplistic. I carry a strong personal belief that more people (including young, healthy couples) should adopt before they create new life, but I know better than to suggest that itís as simple as that. The biological need to procreate is a strong force. The psychological need to nurture a small human is strong too. As a foster parent, Iíve seem these urges play out in disasterous ways and Iím quite confident that despite some complications that the OP will be able to provide a stable, loving, opportunity filled home for a child. The OP wonít be able to provide some of the things a younger couple would, sure. But he will be able to provide many things that millions of children born to young couples donít have. It will be a trade off, and i see no reason to believe that it will result in anything other than a perfectly happy and well adjusted family.

mozar

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #93 on: January 02, 2019, 09:44:02 AM »
I'm surprised some people are digging in their heels about age. I can relate to being worried about it being the last time I see my dad because he makes dumb decisions like driving tired. Also my dad at 62 is the same age as most of the dads at the elementary school because most of them are on their second families.
And it's not easy peasy to take care of your parents when the child is older and the parents are older. My parents were in their 50's when their parents got sick. Both my parents had to quit their jobs at the peak of their careers to take care of them. It took 2 years for my dad to find another job making less than he was making before. My mother wasn't able to find another job and became a private music teacher. My grandparents had kids at the "right" age and they still ruined their kids lives for awhile.

The most important thing I have learned from this forum is that most people do whatever they feel like with their lives (including being misguided by consumerism). People who follow the "rules" are suckas.

LadyMaWhiskers

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #94 on: January 02, 2019, 11:41:22 AM »
I'll add a few things that hopefully aren't duplication of what has been said:

You are contemplating bringing a child into the world even though the baseline condition for life is unbearable suffering (Jordan Peterson paraphrase). The risks and probabilities of particular types of suffering that are being contemplated on this thread are, at best, icing on the cake of the certitude of suffering. MMM doesn't tend to phrase things so harshly, so this may come out of left field for this crowd, but we all know that existence includes (and in fact IS) suffering. It's the natural cross-product of consciousness and vulnerability/mortality. Bummer.

Point two is my standard refrain as a child produced by a non-accidental, incorrect choice by my parents, and the intentional mother of child with no father. My parents' marriage was over when they conceived me, and my older sister had/had multiple significant disabilities that entirely consumed my mother and "ruined" life for many adjacent parties. My son was conceived when I was married to a woman, but she bounced during the pregnancy (week ONE, actually). When contemplating the pregnancy back then, I boiled it down to the actual decision at hand: will a given child be born or not. I was not trying to decide if having a father was better than not, or was "essential", or even if it was "fair" to a child to conceive them, knowing they would have this particular flavor of painful suffering. We were deciding if it was worth being born into the given circumstances, or not. See point one, and you'll agree that it's logically worth it to be born. I certainly feel grateful that my parents made the selfish decision to have me. I cannot come down on the side of "my life is not worth living" because of my absent father, suffering mother, crisis-ridden sister, or anything else frankly. I trust my own child to do the same. And I'm right at the crux of deciding to try for another - now to be born into a single-mom family, not two-mom family, and I trust that child would feel the same.

Is single parenting hard? Obviously. Also partnered parenting. I think money makes an incredible amount of difference. In the U.S., the median income for a single mother is about $27,000, which is not livable without mustachian prowess. As much as money doens't buy happiness, poverty definitely underlies many particular forms of suffering.

Now for something I'm actually curious about: what are you doing 20 hours a week for exercise?!?!?!

PepperPeter

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #95 on: January 02, 2019, 12:02:11 PM »
I had older parents (my dad was in his late 40s when I was born), and then they had my sister several years later.  Both of my parents died before I was 25 and my sister was still a teenager.  I still feel really resentful of people who got to "have" their parents for much longer than I did. 

I'm not saying you shouldn't have a child if you want one.  You might live until they are 40 or 50, as you say.  Both my parents were healthy, until they weren't.  I am in the middle of IVF to have a kid of my own, so I understand your feelings, truly.  But from a kid standpoint of older parents, it fucking sucked.  I would have loved for my dad to have been alive to walk me down the aisle, or to meet my (hypothetical) kid, or to come visit me in the first house that I bought, or to cheer me on when I moved cross country.  He missed a lot.

honeybbq

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #96 on: January 02, 2019, 12:03:55 PM »
I already replied earlier but if you decide not to adopt, I'd also suggest there are other ways to be a father figure and care for and influence the next generation:

- big brother/big sister organizations
- troop leader in boy/girls scouts- particularly if you live in a poor(er) area. They are desperately understaffed.
- coaching - kids' leagues always need coaching. Soccer, baseball, etc.


Being a parent is the most wonderful and also the hardest thing you can do. Being a parent, you can influence 1 life. If you were a troop leader or coach or... ?? - you could connect with many at once. Just an idea. Or do both. :)

Prairie Stash

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #97 on: January 02, 2019, 12:23:42 PM »
Intersting story, thank you MrThatsDifferent.

I can't imagine life without being a father. It was a lot of two-stepping at 2 AM the first year, dancing helped keep me awake while I tried to get her to sleep, its not all roses and sunshine. I have a partner, so it was easier, but if my only choice was to go it alone I would (eventually). Although I was tired and hated large parts of my life; I also had those moments that I wouldn't trade for any promotion, vacation or FIRE date.

I wonder about how the child will perceive your age. I'm guessing they'll be thankful to be alive in this world, cause the alternative is to never be born. Rather then bemoan only having 30 years with you, perhaps they'll realize they're lucky to have 30 years with you. I'd rather mourn a beloved dad at 30 who was the greatest man I ever knew then be born at the regular time to parents who were indifferent. The stronger your bond, the harder the passing, its a compliment to you that people think you're child will grieve your passing.

As for the cost, if$ 100k is that big of a deal, then I'm not sure you really want a kid. Stop and reconsider if the cost is a factor or just an excuse to help you back down from an irreversible decision. Pre-MMM that would have been a lot of cash, now its just a few years of savings, its not like it would destroy my life even if I came out empty handed. Although I'd be bitter about the cash, I'd be far more bitter in 10 years when I realized that its too late and all that extra cash is just numbers in bank account.

Also, I suspect if you get a kid that you will struggle to find a partner in the future. Your dating life will be worse afterwards, you will be trading a future with a partner for a baby. Is that off the table, are you done with dating or at least willing to seriously hamper your self? I can't imagine too many people wanting to date you with a kid, at 50 they'll probably want to be done with raising a child.

EricEng

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #98 on: January 02, 2019, 01:23:58 PM »
I'm surprised some people are digging in their heels about age. I can relate to being worried about it being the last time I see my dad because he makes dumb decisions like driving tired. Also my dad at 62 is the same age as most of the dads at the elementary school because most of them are on their second families.
By most being 60+ you mean .1-1% I assume because this is vastly inaccurate statement otherwise.
https://www.cnn.com/2017/08/30/health/older-dads-us-study/index.html
"Over the study period, the portion of newborns' fathers who are 40 or older doubled from 4.1% to 8.9%. Meanwhile, the proportion of dads who were 50 or older rose from [0.5%] to nearly [1%]."
And it's not easy peasy to take care of your parents when the child is older and the parents are older. My parents were in their 50's when their parents got sick. Both my parents had to quit their jobs at the peak of their careers to take care of them. It took 2 years for my dad to find another job making less than he was making before. My mother wasn't able to find another job and became a private music teacher. My grandparents had kids at the "right" age and they still ruined their kids lives for awhile.
True, having to take care of your parents can ruin your life at any stage.  However, it depends on how you prepared.  A 50+ year old child will have a world more experience, patience, and wisdom in addition to a large cash cushion (or should) that would permit them to take that lower paid job.  A 20 year old dropping out of college or taking a less optimal job (MBA working at McDonalds) could ruin their career permanently.

The most important thing I have learned from this forum is that most people do whatever they feel like with their lives (including being misguided by consumerism). People who follow the "rules" are suckas.
Except that doesn't fly when it impacts the health and happiness of another human.  Doesn't matter if whacking people upside the head with a bat is what makes me happy because it impacts their happinesss, those "suckas rules" matter.  You can't make a utilitarian argument in favor of this.

I had older parents (my dad was in his late 40s when I was born), and then they had my sister several years later.  Both of my parents died before I was 25 and my sister was still a teenager.  I still feel really resentful of people who got to "have" their parents for much longer than I did. 

I'm not saying you shouldn't have a child if you want one.  You might live until they are 40 or 50, as you say.  Both my parents were healthy, until they weren't.  I am in the middle of IVF to have a kid of my own, so I understand your feelings, truly.  But from a kid standpoint of older parents, it fucking sucked.  I would have loved for my dad to have been alive to walk me down the aisle, or to meet my (hypothetical) kid, or to come visit me in the first house that I bought, or to cheer me on when I moved cross country.  He missed a lot.
A lot of the people speaking out in favor of this did not have older parents, while many of those (myself included) who did have older parents (not even as old as being proposed here) are advising against this while having our concerns casually dismissed by those who haven't personally experienced it. 

slow hand slow plan

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Re: $100k to be a single dad or travel the world?
« Reply #99 on: January 02, 2019, 01:53:21 PM »
I think 50 is too old. You should want to adopt, help , foster, mentor and the fact that you think those are out of the question is alarming. Some of your other posts about aging go along with the concerns other people are voicing here.