“How Much Did Your Child(ren) Cost?: The Fear of Going Broke”

It’s really awkward when you find yourself “shopping” your baby’s delivery around to find the most cost effective care for you and your baby.  Unfortunately, this is the situation we now find ourselves in.  I’m nearly in my 4th month of pregnancy, my husband and I are making plans for our pending parenthood but what we didn’t think we had to plan for was…how much we can afford to pay for our baby.  Were you aware that it could cost you, at least, $9,000/delivery WITH insurance?  We weren’t!  What’s more outlandish is that it’s actually cheaper to be single and have a baby than to be married. Why? Because public assistance assists ALL expectant mothers without insurance so long as you meet and do not exceed the income requirements. Ideally, it is understood that a married couples’ joint income will place them above the income levels disqualifying the mother for services. Who knew?! And, did you know that ALL doctor fees must be paid in advance or you’re dropped as a patient?! Oh, did I neglect to mention that if doctors don’t receive their pay in advance that you won’t have a doctor? To put it another way, if you can’t relate to the “Jesus in the Manger” story, no worries…it’s about to be your real life experience!  Apparently, Joseph couldn’t afford his insurance deductible either. (LOL!)

After finding out that having a baby is basically the same cost as a used car, I began researching midwifery. I’d always been curious about it so I set up an interview so we could ask questions and get additional information. I left that interview feeling strong, confident, excited, and less anxious for the adventure ahead.

So, you’re probably wondering if going to a midwife center is free, absolutely not. Having our baby at the birthing center carries a price tag of $4,800, which includes all basic checkups and amenities.  One major amenity is the use of natural birthing methods. My Mother gave birth to three girls and she conditioned all three of us to push through menstrual pain without the use of painkillers.  The reasoning behind this “cruel” practice was to get ready for the concept of childbirth without drugs.  After hearing the stories of multiple women regarding their experiences of chronic back pain after having the epidural, I don’t plan on having an epidural.  Now, I know the pain of labor is NOTHING like menstruation, but I believe the preparation received growing up and with the help of a midewife.  I can do this!

Now, the center is not covered by our insurance, no surprise there, and just like the other doctors we looked into, all the fees have to be paid upfront.  The cheaper price tag, as well as the amenities, convinced us that the birthing center was the best choice.  My husband assured me that having a panic attack will not cause money to rain from the sky.  I still think it’s worth a try! We’ve decided to begin auctioning off our excess items to the highest bidder, for some reason.  For some reason, the list only seems to include MY items, negotiations are just beginning!

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