There seems to be a rise in single-parent families across the world, and in many cases, people are doing it by choice. In South Africa, it is estimated that nearly 38% of all children live with just their mothers. In the US, single-parent families have more than tripled since 1960, while in the UK 21% of kids live in one-parent families. But what are the costs of single parenting in South Africa? We take a deeper look at all the factors.
Cost of single parenting and why it’s essential to save
The pressures of single parenting make it critical for single parents to start saving as soon as possible to help them cope with the financial strains. In order to cope with the hectic demands of working and raising kids, single parents need planning and structure in their lives now more than ever.
Single parents often have additional expenses when compared to traditional, dual income families. Furthermore, costs associated with specialised pregnancies and daily expenses like child-minding can add even more stress to the situation. There are also long-term goals such as education that single parents have to save for.
Cost of IVF in South Africa
If you want to undergo IVF in order to become a single parent, there’s a lot to keep in mind. The cost of single parenting can be immense here. IVF can cost anywhere between R52,000 and R63,000 per cycle.
Then there’s Intrauterine insemination (IUI), which is a much cheaper option for South Africans. The cycles for IUI cost anywhere between R5,000 and R9,000 per cycle.
After your pregnancy has been established, you have to consider the costs of birth. If you use a government hospital, you can deliver your baby free of charge.
When using a private hospital or birthing centre, the cost of single parenting can be immense. A natural birth with a 48hour admission at a birthing centre will cost you roughly R15,600. This fee excludes paediatrician fees and the epidural. If you need an emergency C-section, the costs are approximately R35,240 without the fees for the gynaecologist, anaesthetist, and the paediatrician.
A three-day stay at a private hospital will come down to about R21,000 if you have a natural birth. Planned C-sections cost roughly R26,000 and require a four-day hospital stay. The fees for the gynaecologist, anaesthetist and paediatrician can easily come down to anywhere between R12,000 and R20,000.
What about adoption?
Depending on who facilitates the process, the cost of single parenting and adoption in South Africa can vary greatly.
If you go through Child Welfare or other Non-Profit Agencies, you’ll pay a fee that’s based on income. Expect to pay anything between R12,000 and R15,00. This excludes the costs of the medical, police clearance, and psychological examination).