I am currently working on PhD applications in Engineering to start in Fall 2020. I am in my late 30s and have one child. I am planning to apply to at least one quite highly-ranked school in the US.
I am wondering if it might be seen as a negative for the admissions process that I have a child? I have heard that top US PhD programs are not looking for 'balance' and that they typically expect candidates to give everything to the program. However, I have heard of people doing PhDs with kids (even having kids during a PhD program) and still being able to complete without any major problems.
In particular, should I avoid mentioning that I have a kid in my application/personal statement? Or, conversely, should I mention it? Would it be seen as dishonest in some way, if I gain admission and then turn round and tell people I have a child?