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10 Hidden Costs of Parenthood

It's no secret that raising a child is expensive. A 2012 U.S. Department of Agriculture report indicates that the average family spends a eye-popping $241,080 on the average child from birth to age 18.What is perhaps more surprising is where that money goes."I knew it was going to cost more," says Stephanie Morgan, a mother of two from Big Rapids, Mich. "But I thought it would be day care and diapers."Instead, she's been surprised at how much she's spent on food, medical and miscellaneous expenses in the three years since her son was born.Here are 10 hidden costs of parenting for which prospective mothers and fathers should prepare.1. Breast-feedingAlthough definitely cheaper than feeding formula, breastfeeding isn't necessarily a freebie."Everyone loves to say that it's free, but it actually isn't," says Amanda, a blogger who prefers her real name not be used. "There are a ton of hidden costs like pumps, nursing covers and even extra food for the nursing mom."Amanda, who had to pump e...

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