So you want a relationship but not a family? Statistics show going child free is becoming more popular among Irish couples. Two’s Company HQ are spotlighting the reasons behind Irish couples choosing to stay a duo.
In a recent study Ireland ranked third highest in the world for childlessness. Psychology Today described the doubts women encounter when considering having a baby as similar to
“wondering whether you might like to see the film ‘Motherhood’. You’ve read about it and it could be interesting and entertaining but you’re not sure if it’s really your kind of thing—you could be wasting time and money better spent saving for that trip around the world. A lot of people seemed to like it but you know one or two who really didn’t and some of those who did have so little in common with you their opinion hardly counts. And your partner doesn’t seem too keen right now…… Would you go on your own? In the end—it’s just a movie and all that’s at risk is a few pounds and a few hours that you’ll never get back. But what if there was more at stake? What if you had to live that movie every day for the next 18 years (at least)? Who would buy a ticket for that level of commitment?”
When put that simply, it is easy to understand some couples decision to opt out of parenthood.
Like so much in life, money is often a key deciding factor. The average wage gap between men and women widens to 22% when couples have children, however for those without children the gap is less than half that at 7%. On average the wage penalty for having children comes in at 14%. For couples juggling hefty rents or mortgage repayments, on top of the high cost of living in general, the money is simply not there to support having a child. Many couples now prefer to enjoy what is left of their pay packets indulging in their favorite pursuits or pastimes together, as revealed in a survey carried out by Joe.ie where food, going out and travel ranked highest on a list of what people spend on.
Ireland has been steadily severing ties with its ‘traditional’ values for quite some time now. Investment in education has yielded a highly skilled workforce of both women and men and the natural progression for these university graduates is to focus on work. Currently for young professionals having a family takes a back seat to carving out a successful and lucrative career which finances a high standard of living. Two’s Company member *Carly explains “I spent five years studying between my undergraduate degree and then my Masters. Last year I landed a job in a dream company with plenty of opportunity to progress. I have a plan of where I want to be in five years so I am really focused on that, I have nothing against children but I just don’t envision having a family myself, work is my passion and priority, I am only getting started”.
Two’s Company respects each individuals choice to make a decision that best suits themselves, their life and their relationship and as always we urge honesty when having important conversations with your partner surrounding the future and family.