I was referring more to the discretionary costs associated with having babies...ie have you ever been into a higher end baby store....I remember walking into one in Sudbury of all places prior to our first child being born and they had a lovely selection of baby gear, goodies and furniture. I particularily noticed a nice crib which appeared to be hardwood.. maple me thinks..and I noticed the price tag of $350 (1994) I commented to my wife that this did not seem unreasonable for an attractive, seemingly well built crib....she proceeded to CORRECT me by indicating that the price tag I was looking at was just for the bedding "ensemble" !....how I hate that word.."ensemble"#2 is a matter of personal choice. Different people have different reasons to have kids and not to have them. You may as well add pets to your list.
I'll start with some emotional, timeless ripoffs that really piss me off :
1) Weddings ..been married twice...was widowed..
2) Babies..got 3
3) Funerals. have dealt with 2 directly..my first wife and my father...