Is it cheaper to raise a son or daughter?

Answered by Frank Schwing

While it is difficult to make generalizations about the cost of raising a child based solely on their gender, MoneyTips estimates that parents spend an average of $80 more per month on girls than they do on boys. This translates to an additional $960 per year or $17,280 over the course of 18 years that children are likely living at home.

It is important to note that these figures are not set in stone and can vary greatly depending on various factors such as personal circumstances, location, and individual preferences. However, it is worth exploring some of the potential reasons behind this estimated difference in costs.

1. Clothing: Girls’ clothing tends to be more expensive than boys’ clothing. From infancy to adulthood, girls often have a wider range of options when it comes to fashion, accessories, and grooming products. This can contribute to higher expenses for parents.

2. Personal care products: Girls may require additional personal care products such as menstrual hygiene products, skincare items, and hair care products. These costs can add up over time.

3. Extracurricular activities: While both boys and girls can participate in extracurricular activities, some activities may be more traditionally associated with one gender over the other. For example, girls may be more likely to participate in dance or gymnastics, which can be costly in terms of lessons, costumes, and competition fees.

4. Education: Although education costs can vary widely, there may be differences in the expenses associated with raising boys versus girls. For example, some studies suggest that girls may be more likely to pursue higher education, which can come with its own set of costs such as tuition fees, textbooks, and living expenses.

5. Social expectations: Society often places different expectations on boys and girls, which can influence the cost of raising them. For instance, girls may feel pressure to conform to certain beauty standards, leading to increased spending on clothing, cosmetics, and beauty treatments.

It is important to remember that these are generalizations, and every child and family is unique. Some families may find that their spending patterns differ significantly from these estimates. Additionally, it is crucial to consider that the cost of raising a child extends beyond financial expenses. Time, emotional support, and nurturing are equally important aspects of parenting that cannot be quantified.

While MoneyTips estimates that parents spend $80 per month more on girls compared to boys, it is important to approach these figures with caution. It is essential to recognize that each child’s needs and expenses will vary, and it is up to individual families to determine how they allocate their resources.