Birthrate Drop Spurs A Bigger Discussion About Relationships [OPINION]

The number of women giving birth has been declining for years and just hit a historic low. According to provisional 2016 population data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday, the number of births fell 1 percent from a year earlier, bringing the general fertility rate to 62.0 births per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44. The trend is being driven by a decline in birthrates for teens and 20-somethings.

The birthrate for women in their 30s and 40s increased — but not enough to make up for the lower numbers in their younger peers.

When you read the opinions that have been posted on various locations on Facebook, and other social media platforms there is one sentiment with variations shared:

I don’t have the money or the patience to raise them and I am not doing what my parents did and ending up divorced and alone

There is a good side to that and a bad side to that.  The good side is that you have observed the mistakes your parents made. It also has planted medical advancements for fertility at new demands. Fertility treatments have extended the age of childbearing, the birthrates among women who are age 40 to 44 are also rising. Many of the women surveyed who have actioned having children said they waited to long for marriage.

Marriage is a big commitment, there’s no doubt about it. It’s natural to be a little nervous before jumping in. But the trends and recent studies suggest that more people today seem not only anxious about the prospect of marriage, they are shunning it. Of the various ways in which one can forge a family (marriage, cohabitation, or having a child without being married), cohabitation has become the most common.

One reason for this increased interest in cohabitation over marriage may not be the fear of the union itself, so much as a concern for the possibility of its collapse.

One is that, if you are a woman, the number of quality single men declines. Among deniers of unpleasant realities — people known as progressives, leftists, and feminists — this truth is denied and labeled “sexist.” But, as Susan Patton, a Princeton graduate, wrote in a letter to the editor titled “Advice for the young women of Princeton: the daughters I never had,” published in Princeton’s student newspaper: “Find a husband on campus before you graduate. . . . You will never again be surrounded by this concentration of men who are worthy of you.”

I see the struggles that older women  have endured looking for a partner that is worthy of you. That is the unfortunate part. The HBO hit series ‘Sex And The City‘      hit something on head on.  In the African American Community, ‘Girlfriends‘ was the hot point.  Both of these shows made light of a real struggle. Professional women who want to be in monogamous relationships are set on struggle.

Please save me the professional women don’t want a blue collar guy argument. That’s nonsense. Grown women want partners that are life partners. They want men who are nor skirt chasers and ‘perpetual 13 year olds.’

The Harvard Study of Adult Development, found about what makes men healthy and happy over the course of their lives, including their retirement years. Indeed, elderly men who enjoyed good marriages reported significantly less depression, better moods, and more satisfaction with life.

The director of the study, Robert Waldinger, summed up the results:

“Over and over in these 75 years, our study has shown that the people who fared the best were the people who leaned into relationships with family, with friends and with community.”

There are reasons that we should all rethink everything that is happening in our society. We need to rethink why relationships are failing all around us.

Oh and a final footnote, research suggests that men who get and stay married live almost ten years longer than their unmarried peers.

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