Overpopulation is also a major factor in gender inequity, according to many
sources. Where there's high birth rates and high poverty rates, the economic
value of female children goes down. Yet by the 1980s, child-free living became
a symbol of infertility and failure, a symbol that has prevailed into the
1990s. This is a pity, considering what a liberating lifestyle option it can
be. Obviously, you'll need to review your original reasons for wanting children
before you make this choice. You'll also need to research the decision:
interview other couples who are living child free and investigate their
lifestyle. Interview couples with children and find out how much of their own
lives are sacrificed.
Some fertile couples are choosing child-free living because of environmental
and financial concerns. Many truly feel the world is an environmental disaster
area and do not wish to raise children in a world of questionable health
hazards. Other couples find that they can barely meet their bills as it is, and
opt not to add more stress to an already badly strained budget. Remember, parenting is a selfless, largely self-sacrificing job.
Choosing a child-free lifestyle may be an appealing option in an economically
turbulent and difficult world.
Some of the traditional reasons for having children were purely
economic. Children, many people thought, guaranteed financial security in old
age. Today, with so many college-educated adults living at home because they
cannot get jobs, the economic benefits of progeny are no longer visible. And
you'll find that most senior-age parents of financially successful children
today do not want to be a financial burden and will choose to be independent as
long as they can. Another traditional reason for having children was fear of
loneliness in one's old age. Twenty years from now, the majority of the
population will be over age 65. You won't be lonely.
The Benefits of Child-Free Living
Freedom. You may have the time and extra money down the
road for all the things you dreamed of: going back to school for that second
degree, buying a vacation home, traveling, early retirement, or whatever you