Listen, babies are expensive. They eat your money out of pricey Dr. Brown's bottles and then poop it out into pricey diapers. I'm all for learning how to manage money better and save a little cash here and there, particularly because I'm a parent. Making the decision to have a baby is like making the decision to light a bunch of money on fire, so I'm constantly looking for ways to cut costs.
That's how I came across this gem of a blog post, entitled: 10 Ways To Have A Child On the Cheap. Only, instead of offering me fine wisdom nuggets it has nothing but condescending and sometimes blatantly terrible advice all wrapped in a little tortilla of privilege and dipped in condescension queso. It's the worst.
In it, you'll find such novel and cheap savings hacks as "breastfeed" and "cloth diaper". Some of it is downright groundbreaking like "buy stuff when it's on sale" and other times it is completely out of touch with reality, telling you to use your flexible spending account from your job, because everyone's got a job with benefits, right? RIGHT?!? Actually, most of it is just self-congratulatory, like this little gem:
Keeping formula in the house is a known “booby-trap,” which is what breastfeeding activists have indicated can get in the way of a healthy and long-lasting breastfeeding relationship. Despite this, my morbid need to always be prepared led me to keep it in the house regardless. I knew I was determined not to use it, and over ten months into my daughter’s life, I haven’t ever opened a canister.
To be fair, a lot of money saving articles directed at parents read a lot like this one, the kind of tone-deaf crap that assumes we all have a few hundred dollars to spend on a bunch of G Diapers and nothing but time on our hands to wash them. So I won't get mad. Instead, I've compiled my own list of ways to raise a baby on the cheap:
1. Feed Your Baby Cheetohs
In addition to being delicious, Cheetohs are relatively cheap when you compare them to formula, especially if you get store brand "Cheese-ohs" instead. Also, they have less poison than formula, so you gotta like that.
2. Housetrain Your Infant
Allowing your child to poop in the yard represents a relatively low start-up investment since all you need is a baby and some grass. Hey, a dog can do it. Are you saying babies aren't as smart as dogs? You're a bad person.
3. Clothing and Gear
Baby clothing and gear can get expensive, which is why you should forego both. First of all, your baby should already be coated with a fine layer of orange dust from the Cheetohs you've been feeding them, which will keep them warm. Second, since you're home all day long anyway, try actually being a mother for once instead of just letting your kids play on a tummy mat, geez.
4. Have Money Before You Have A Baby
Screw FSAs and HSAs. Just have money and opportunities before you have a baby. If you can't do that, you shouldn't be having babies anyway. Boom logic.
5. Get a Roomba
Once your baby is ready to wean off of Cheetohs it makes sense to buy a Roomba that picks all of the food up off of the floor and empty the canister into a baby dish. Your little one will gain valuable fine motor skills as they sift through paperclips and thumbtacks to find the delicious clumps of scratch-made tabbouleh.
6. Stop Going Out
Childcare is for people who don't love their babies enough. If you and your husband can't make a romantic evening out of staring lovingly into your infant's eyes, you don't love each other or your baby enough.
7. Steal Shit
If you're going to get something new instead of used, don't pay top dollar. Just take it. Walk out of the store with some Garanimals shoved into the bottom of your stroller. You can't argue with a 100% discount.
8. Take Donations
The author of the post got one thing right; people just love to buy you stuff. Take full advantage of this by leaving a drop box for clothing and Cheetohs outside your front door for your family to fill. Don't let them in unless they're going to watch your kid for you while you head down to Target to steal more shit.
9. Don't Have a Baby
Literally the only way to raise a kid on the cheap is to not raise one.