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To think Americans have more only children?

(39 Posts)
fairybeagle Thu 04-Apr-19 16:33:02

It seems that Americans seem more likely to have a single child and that it's more of a norm there? Does anyone know if this is correct?
What sort of attitudes do Americans have towards only children? Less negative than other countries?

sirfredfredgeorge Thu 04-Apr-19 21:19:46

Going to uni is more important to us Americans

Yet fewer USAians go to uni than UKians, so I'm not sure why that makes sense.

I think a lot of the comments on US people in this thread are about "rich" educated white families living in the north east or California, and not at all representative of the large differences in other areas.

HeresMe Thu 04-Apr-19 21:33:36

Good that people are having less children, we need less people on the planet, for environmental reasons alone.

VladmirsPoutine Thu 04-Apr-19 21:35:06

By virtue of population I imagine that would be the case.

BloodyDisgrace Fri 05-Apr-19 09:44:49

Do you have any interesting statistics to back this up, OP, or is it just your observation?
I'd be surprised if they do, because abortion situation can be quite barbaric in a lot of states; health insurance, I read, sometimes doesn't cover contraception, so what do they do then if they become pregnant when they didn't want to? You'd think with all that shoddy reproductive health provision and wide spread religious attitudes they would have a one more child? ... Even in Britain every 4th of 5th child is unplanned - I read something to that tune long ago and don't remember the full statistics. Basically, what I'm saying, even here, with more liberal attitudes, people often have children they didn't want to in the first place; so how a country with worse attitudes can afford plenty of 1 child families is a mystery to me... And people do get pregnant while using contraception.

TheFlis12345 Fri 05-Apr-19 09:49:57

My American friend and her husband always wanted 3 or 4 kids. She got pregnant with twins and they were premature, both had a couple of months in hospital but are now fine. Their medical bill, after insurance, was over $2million, which they will still be paying off when the kids are in college. They will never be able to afford to have another child.

francienolan Fri 05-Apr-19 10:51:06

I am an only child and American. My parents had several miscarriages after I was born, rather than deciding they were one and done. But I can see why a lot of families only have one there now. It costs a lot even with health insurance to have a baby, and then you aren't guaranteed paid time off. My last company there gave 4 months and this was generous for there!

Also groceries are more expensive particularly fruit and veg. A single bell pepper costs the same as a happy meal, where I grew up (I grew up in an expensive place, granted). So it isn't like here where you can get good groceries for quite cheap.

Uni also costs a lot. If I hadn't had a scholarship I couldn't have gone. I was lucky to have a scholarship at all, most people take out huge loans!

outpinked Fri 05-Apr-19 10:53:56

It’s too expensive over there to have a child and Mother’s are only allowed six weeks maternity leave. I wouldn’t have children if I lived in the USA.

honeylulu Fri 05-Apr-19 11:03:10

It seems to be more common in America to have an only child if the parents are uni educated professionals. My husband is American by birth (though lived here since he was 6). Most of his relatives in the US have just one child.

fairybeagle Fri 05-Apr-19 21:37:15

No I don't have any stats to back it up @BloodyDisgrace it was just an observation really, although to be honest I was sort of basing it on portrayals of American families in the movies and tv so not a very educated assumption!

I didn't even think about cost really, that's an eye opener. Can't believe the happy meal/bell pepper analogy, that's crazy!!

I sort of thought it was more down to life style, as someone mentioned above, extra curricular activities and such.

TheVanguardSix Sat 06-Apr-19 09:08:39

Yet fewer USAians go to uni than UKians, so I'm not sure why that makes sense.

You just clarified my point that it’s a fecking bomb to go to uni. So this is why many Americans don’t have big families. They want 2 kids at a good uni. Not 5 kids doing night school.
I am one of your USians who didn’t go to uni in the States because I was DC3 and the petty cash box had a hole in it by the time I was ready to go. In 1990, my parents didn’t have the means to pay off the £100k loan for what would have been my 4 year tuition at the liberal arts university I was going to attend.

fromnowhere Sat 06-Apr-19 09:19:00

Speaking of TV/movie portrayals, they always seem to have a big age gap between kids, like a ten yr old and a baby? I assumed that was due to the costs involved in having a baby as well. Not sure if it's common but it seems so in tv?

LostInShoebiz Sat 06-Apr-19 10:00:13

They also always have stuff happen to them in TV shows. It’s not real life; it’s to drive the plot as efficiently as possible.

fairybeagle Sat 06-Apr-19 12:40:15

Yes @fromnowhere that's another thing I thought about, the age gap. But I suppose as pp say it's tv not real life. Although maybe a grain of truth in there somewhere.

OutOntheTilez Sat 06-Apr-19 13:02:20

Speaking of TV/movie portrayals, they always seem to have a big age gap between kids, like a ten yr old and a baby?

I always figured they do that as a plot device. Is the show going downhill / on its last leg? Write in a newborn.

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