[M]y husband and I are looking forward to starting a family next year
With all due respect, you've already "started a family" by getting married. A husband and wife are a "family." Why do you want children?
As a childfree (by choice) married individual, I'm sincerely curious regarding the reasoning behind why people would have children. Objectively, I only see negative consequences. It will severely negatively affect your finances, it will strain your husband/wife relationship, it will preclude exotic travel and early retirement ... I honestly don't understand the motivation for having kids these days.
Perhaps kgb2788 should’ve said expanding her family. Let me say first that I have family members who are unable to have children. This is a difficult and painful thing to realize especially if it is to physiological reasons. Some have chosen to adopt while others have chosen to remain “childfree.” It really boils down to personal choice.
Sure the added responsibility, strain on finances, changing diapers, sleep deprivation, stress on marriage, reduction in free time, etc. all contribute towards this important decision. But let me address the motivation for having a kid. Love.
A child is a unique little person created as a testimony of each spouses love for one another. Depending on your belief system children are a gift from God. Not to mention there is nothing like having my little one hold my hand or laugh at me when I make silly faces. When I first saw him something clicked and I realized life would never be the same. The little life I was holding was my responsibility. I can’t express the love I felt towards that little guy. To re-experiencing childhood.
Children learn and grow at different paces. They are fascinating and can bring such joy. Playing with Legos, G.I. Joe’s, or trains with a little one again can be a blast. Learning.
It is great to experience a child’s learning. Some children are auditory learners while others are visual learners. Some children are excellent at Math & Science while others lean towards Literature/History. Some are athletic while others are more tech savvy. Parenting Principles.
I get to teach my child my families values. I can correct what I think could be done better in my upbringing. With the help of my wife I can better understand different perspectives of child rearing. I can do my best to educate a child to grow up to be a strong, responsible, contributing individual to society. Legacy.
Just as my parents did for me I hope to pass on the torch to my children. I hope my family tree doesn’t end with me. Sacrifice.
I thought I was a person who shared my time and resources with my wife. I didn’t think of myself as selfish. But after having a child it’s like I didn’t know the meaning of sacrifice. A completely helpless little person depends on me and my wife for his entire survival. A little mind-boggling but it is such a priviledge.
For 100 reasons to have kids see this link: http://inashoe.com/2010/07/reasons-children/