Would-be mums are leaving it later to have kids with average family size shrinking, figures reveal

The Sun 3 days ago

WOMEN are leaving it later to have kids and the average family size has shrunk, figures show.

Women who turned 45 last year have an average of 1.89 children.

That is the same as the year before but continues a downward trend from a high of 2.42 children for women in their 80s, born in 1935.

The Office for National Statistics found the proportion of women having just one child has been rising over the years.

It now stands at 18 per cent, the same as last year — up from 14 per cent for those women born in 1946.

Two-child families remain the most common size, at 37 per cent for women aged 45 in 2018.

Among this age group, 19 per cent were childless — similar to recent years but more than double the nine per cent for their mums’ generation.

By the age of 30, 53 per cent of women born in 1973 had at least one child, compared with 82 per cent of their mums.

The ONS said a number of factors may be behind the rise in childlessness.

They include a decline in marriages, choosing work over having kids, greater social acceptability of a child-free lifestyle and putting off babies until it is too late.

Tags: Pregnancy, UK

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