Quick question: Do you currently have over $245,000 (£180,000) in your bank account? That's how much the U.S. Department of Agriculture projected it would cost a middle-income couple to raise a child to the age of 18 in 2013. For higher-income families, that cost ballooned to $455,000 (£330,000). Those numbers are officially sending many millennials to take their birth control pills.
The Centres for Disease Control released data earlier this year which showed that birth rates for teenagers and women in their 20s hit record lows in 2013. Meanwhile, birth rates for women in their 30s and 40s rose. In a recent The New York Times op-ed, writer Jessica Grose argues that this data indicates not a sign of millennial selfishness, but one of selflessness.
"This is not because millennials are stuck in a state of perpetual adolescence and unwilling to make the sacrifice that children entail," Grose says. "On the contrary: putting off children is one of the most financially responsible decisions that a young person can make."
Grose mentions how much child care costs, plus the fact that many millennials are still swimming in student loan debt. "Millennials, like most groups of millions of people, are rational actors. They just don’t want to have kids they can’t afford," she concludes.