The decision to have children is a very personal one. When a couple first gets married often times they are asked when they will start to have children and the pressure is on. While some people opt to go sans kids, other’s are more extreme and opt to have several.
Clive and Louise Andrews, from Lincolnshire, have ten children and even though it’s a struggle to simply get through the day and feed all the children, they don’t plan on putting a stop to the growth of their family anytime soon.
The family is so large that they are featured on the show Big Family Values: More Kids than Cash, where they opened up about their challenges. The Andrews children consist of three girls and seven boys between the ages of five months and 17 years old. They have so many clothes that they need to one of the bedrooms in their connected three-bedroom homes, as a wardrobe.
Part-time cleaner Louise, 34, and stay-at-home dad Clive, 50, admit that the financial strain is quite stressful, but the 1,000-a-month food bill isn’t stopping them from trying for baby number 11.
Just to go somewhere as a family, the Andrews need to take two vehicles. And their weekly groceries include 15 boxes of cereal, 15 pints of milk, 12 loaves of bread, and 10kg of potatoes, nearly six times as much as the average family. They do 35 loads of laundry every week, which ends up being 1,800 loads a year.
“Having ten children is an absolute blessing,” said Clive, who recently quit running his own flooring business. “It’s 24/7 around the clock but I enjoy it.”
While it’s unknown whether the Andrews family claims state benefits, they would be eligible to claim Child Tax Credit for at least nine of their ten children considering they are under 16 years old.
“We don’t go out and spend thousands of pounds on holidays,” said Clive. “Instead of spending thousands of pounds on holidays and living it up in the sun we live it up at the supermarket and make sure the kids are fed.”
Louise added that their love is stronger than having to go sun yourself on a beach all day on holiday.
Louise earns 300 euros a week, which goes toward covering the cost of running the household.
To keep the hundreds of articles of clothing organized, each child has a separate rack for clothes and an individually labeled storage box for their underwear.
Since the family lives out of two homes, Louise has double the amount of space to keep clean, which means that she is up before dawn tidying up.
So, while a brood of this size comes with a lot of work and stress, it’s safe to say that they will never have to worry about being lonely.
Commenters had a lot to say about the family, both good and bad…
“No way they can be self-funded. Why don’t more people have some self-respect and take care to only have as many kids as they can afford? Because they know they can fully rely on our lax state benefits system to take care of them all. Disgraceful and shameful.”
“God said make fruit and multiply and this beautiful family is doing just that. God Bless the Andrew xxx.”