Three reasons that are preventing young people in the USA from getting married today, and it’s not just finances
In the USA, couples need to work to cover basic living expenses. These include exorbitant insurance premiums, student loans, and mortgages, and having a child can quickly drain finances for single-income families. Hence, the trepid response is to skip having a family altogether.
1. Student loan
Today, young people in America worry more about their financial instability than their parents did in the past. Another burden is the pressure of paying their student loan debt. [Steven Rugles]
Articles about how horrifying, painful, or expensive it is to have a child are not helping. If any, these fearmongers are helping more young people not to get married.
2. Fear of having children
Having a child means putting them into daycare which could average around $500 a week in 2023. That’s a lot of money, and working is counterproductive if one only earns minimum wage.
Interestingly, the average young family was poorer than today. Yet the baby boom was just after the second world war.
“Those 18 to 34 are more educated and earn more in some parts of the country. However, they are also less likely to be employed and live in poverty than their counterparts were in 1980.” [Census 2014]
“44% of non-parents ages 18 to 49 say it’s not likely they will have children, an increase of 7% in 2018.” [Pew 2021]
Miley Cyrus, Zooey Deschanel, Jennifer Aniston, and Ellen DeGeneres are some of the many celebrities who said they don’t want children.
In 2023, comedian Seth Rogen was asked in a podcast what his secrets to success were. He laughingly said not being a parent is. “Honestly, thank God we don’t have children. We get to do whatever we want,” he added.
3. Climate change
Analysts at Morgan Stanley said that the “movement not to have children owing to fears over climate change is growing and impacting fertility rates quicker than any preceding trend in the field of fertility decline,” reported CNBC.
The bottom line, a dark force is changing the marriage culture
Pew research in 2020 indicates that more than half of Americans say marriage is not essential to leading a fulfilling life. After all, Hollywood celebrities portray a happy life—devoid of having a nuclear family.