228. Bad News, Good News

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"My period started today," Ruth said. Brody could hear her sadness over the phone. "Oh, I'm sorry, honey. That's too bad," Brody said. Until now, they both had assumed that she was pregnant, because her period was supposed to start three weeks ago.

Brody had mixed feelings about the news. On the one hand, he knew that Ruth wanted a baby more than anything else in the world. So, he naturally wanted her to be pregnant and happy. In fact, he wanted a kid as much as she did. He would love to have a son, so he could teach him how to avoid all the stupid mistakes Brody had made in his own life.

On the other hand, he had just read about a new study that said the cost of raising a child was now $225,000. And that was just through high school. College was an additional expense. Right now, the average cost of attending a public university was $6,000 a year--if the student lived at home. Eighteen years from now, how much would it be?

Brody and Ruth had only $50,000 in savings, not even enough for a down payment on a nice house. Plus, neither of them had health insurance. Premiums for insuring themselves and the baby would cost at least $400 a month, not to mention the deductibles and co-pays.

"You worry about money too much," Ruth had once told him. "Look at you—your parents raised you and five more kids, and they were making much less than we are making now."

"That's true," Brody agreed. "But things were a lot different then."


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