Millennials are now at the age where they should be forming families of their own. Despite this demographic advantage, fewer and fewer 25- to 39-year-olds are having kids than ever in recent history. This is because of factors such as the 2008 financial crisis, reduced affordable child care and a lack of paid family leave, and anxiety about the future of the world in general. Well, now millennials can proudly add “living in a pandemic” to the list of reasons why they choose to not have children.
Initially, there were reports of an anticipated coronavirus baby boom, but demographers now say that that is not likely to happen. A lot of Americans are unemployed or furloughed, so fewer people feel financially stable enough to actually start a family. Due to COVID-19, an impressive 40$ of American women changed their plans to have children or the number of children they plan on having. This research is according to a new data analysis performed by the Guttmacher Institute, involving over 2,000 women. Over a third of cisgender women declared that they would postpone pregnancies or choose to have fewer children than they previously wanted. This number rises even more if you take into account women of Black or Hispanic descent. The numbers are also high if we look at queer and at women in lower-income brackets.
Having a baby before the coronavirus pandemic came around was a risky decision, but now it looks like straight-up madness. No matter how badly some people want to become parents, it is simply not doable for a lot of people. On the other hand, quarantine did adjust the perspectives and priorities of a lot of people. Almost 20% of respondents in the previously mentioned study said that COVID-19 made them want to have a child sooner or to have a higher number of children.