Pros of learning Afrikaans:
- I am much more interested in South Africa than in the Netherlands or Belgium.
- The grammar is much easier (no gender, no conjugation for person).
- It would help me to access more materials about South Africa and its languages (this would probably also happen if I learned Dutch, although obviously it would be a bit harder to understand Afrikaans if I don't study it directly).
- Because of the scant resources, I would be less tempted to spend hours a day on Afrikaans than Dutch, so it may take less time away from Xhosa.
Pros of learning Dutch:
- There are much better resources available.
- I like the sound better (purer vowels, sounds a bit closer to German).
- If I end up learning both languages, it would probably easier for me to think in Dutch and adapt the grammar to Afrikaans without thinking. If I'm used to Afrikaans and I want to try to fake my way through Dutch, I would have to guess about things like conjugation or gender.
- My wife and I speak French and are likely to make many visits to France, so it is reasonable to expect that we might wander into Belgium or the Netherlands on a trip. I would also love to visit South Africa but visits will be much less likely and less frequent.
- I am interested in Indonesia, and there may be some very interesting Dutch texts about Indonesia.
Pros/cons of learning neither:
- Xhosa is a difficult language. Studying a second language on top of it would take time and focus away from it and make success less likely.