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August 10, 2007

rich people can afford more things!

I just listened to this NPR report about how wealthier families are having tons of kids: "In the world of the wealthy, 4 has become the new 2." Women interviewed in Darien, Connecticut claim that jealousy and baby lust are part of what drive them to get knocked up again and again. One mom says she feels the otherwise thankless job of raising kids is "validated" when there are four to handle. And Jill Kargman, author of Momzillas, suggests this is rerouted "career ambition"; that these moms are engaging in "competitive birthing." On some level it's happening just because it can: money does make a difference. And it's not just childcare (poor people use childcare all the time; they have to work). It's being able to hire someone to come over and put training wheels on all the bikes. It's being able to afford 100K for school tuition each year. Little things like that.

by ceridwen at 7:36 AM
in media momming | parenting | the balancing act


Well, I thought this piece was pretty overblown myself, as is the concept of "competitive birthing"--yeah, kids are expensive, but you don't need a million-dollar home even if you've got a multi-kid household, and I think very few sane women would actually go through the process of pregnancy and birth for no other reason than keeping up with the Joneses--it'd be a lot cheaper and easier to just buy existing kids one of those $2000 strollers!

comment by Meagan Francis at August 12, 2007 4:38 PM

Yes. Meagan! It was totally over the top. The fact that they mic'd up the Darien Country Club helped tip the whole thing in a crazy direction. I know they were trying to figure out why there has been a 30% increase in 3+ kids for wealthy families (or whatever big leap it was) but there seemed to be some snark involved. It definitely inspired snark in my own response. The personal potty trainer pushed me over the edge! I honestly have no idea why wealthier people are having more kids. I come from a big family and we were lagging way behind the Jones' as a result. Though I have many fond feelings about the clan-- and I think I got a lot out of it. You develop some strong inner resources when you have to share one bathroom with five other people.

comment by ceridwen at August 20, 2007 10:30 PM

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