There seems to be a growing trend for couples to have children later on in life nowadays. Raising children is no longer a number one priority that couples prescribe too, especially with so many other things they wish to experience and enjoy before settling down.
There are many benefits of having kids at a young age, and there are, of course, risks for leaving it too late. That being said, having a child as a mature couple comes with many rewards. There are, in fact, many good reasons to wait until the time is right to have kids. Some couples wait until they are in their 30s and really benefit from it.
Having children is a big responsibility. It’s not something that you should do on a whim. Many couples simply feel it is the next step and so aim to get pregnant early on in their marriage. Having children too soon can leave you feeling as if you are missing out, and you could live the rest of your life wondering if you should have waited so that you could focus on other things.
For those who are toying with the idea of only having children later on in life, there are many good reasons that support this mindset. If you would like to explore each of these reasons, read on.
These 15 reasons why you should wait to have kids:
1. You are more emotionally and psychologically mature.
Most young couples think that they are emotionally and psychologically ready for the challenge of having kids at an early age when they really aren’t. While some couples handle it well, others find that the additional stress coupled with emotional immaturity can lead to a relationship breakdown.
2. Your decision-making skills have improved over the years.
As an older person, you are able to make better decisions based on what you have learned, witnessed, and experienced over the years. As a very young couple, you might not take all considerations in mind, and you might find yourself making the wrong decisions for your family (and for yourself).
3. Your parents are entering retirement (free childcare is readily available).
As a very young couple having children, you will need to consider hiring babysitters or asking family members to help you out if you want to go on a date or have a weekend away together. Your parents will probably still be working, which makes things difficult, and babysitters who aren’t family members can be unreliable and costly.
If you only have children when you are older, the chances that your parents are entering the retirement stage are high, and this means that you have more opportunities to ask them for help with childcare.
4. You’re in a better financial position when you’re a bit older.
Most young couples just starting out don’t truly consider all of the costs involved in starting a family. Jobs may also be inflexible or chop and change over the years, making a steady income unreliable. As you get older, you will become more financially secure, which means that you are in a better position to afford kids and all the unexpected costs that come along with them.
5. Your relationship has withstood the test of time.
Having a baby can put a considerable amount of strain on a relationship. Even if you have a great relationship with your partner, the younger the relationship is, the more vulnerable it is to stress and strain. If you wait to have kids, you give your relationship more time to develop and strengthen, making it stronger in times of stress and strain. Your relationship is more prepared for kids when you and your partner are a little older.
6. Your selfish years are behind you, and now you can truly focus on putting your family first.
As a young couple, you and your partner undoubtedly have an active social life and like to get out and about together. Spending a few years enjoying these occasions could be the best thing you do for your family.
Get the parties and self-indulgence out of the way and decide to settle and have kids when it’s out of your system. Why? Because when you’re not feeling like you should be out there having fun, you can truly focus on putting your family first and enjoying that they (and you) have the best life possible.
7. You’ve had time to focus on personal goals and now have time for family.
Personal goals are extremely hard to achieve when you’re caring for a growing family. Want to study? You might not be able to do that with a baby on the way. Want to start your own business? Having small kids is going to make that difficult. Spend your younger years achieving those personal goals before you start thinking about having kids.
8. You won’t ever feel like you’re missing out.
Many young parents feel as if they are missing out on life because they are taking care of kids. If you spend your younger years doing the things you want to do, when you’re a bit older and do have kids, you won’t feel as if you are missing out on life because you have already spent some time doing life.
9. You’re no longer studying, and your career is stable.
If you have kids very early in life, you may still be trying to finish your studies and establish your career. It can be tricky with little kids. If you wait to have kids, your studying days will be behind you, and your career should be stable and certain.
10. You’ve had time to get into good/healthy physical shape.
When you’re young and have kids, you hit the ground running. You might not even be in the habit of cooking your own healthy meals yet. If you wait before having kids and plan your pregnancy, you can spend some time getting fit and healthy so that your baby and pregnancy have the best possible start.
11. You have had time to travel and explore the world.
If you start a family early, you may not have time to see the world. You could try to travel the world with kids, but it’s going to be very difficult and, of course, very expensive. If you wait to have kids, you can spend a few years exploring all the countries you want to get to know, and when you are satisfied that your travel bucket list is well on its way, you can start thinking about having kids.
12. You’ve got to know yourself and know what’s important to you.
When you start a family early in life, you will have to deal with getting to know who you are, what you want, and what is important to you while trying to care for your growing family. This can be somewhat overwhelming and may even interfere with your parenting style as you aren’t quite sure of what that should be.
If, instead, you spend some time developing and growing as a person, you can have children later on and will know who you are, what’s important to you, and exactly how you want to bring your children up.
13. You might decide that having a family is not something you actually want.
You might be keen to start a family when you are young because you think it is the logical next step, but if you wait a while and get to know yourself better, you might ultimately decide that you don’t really want kids in the end. You might decide that you would rather focus on your career or simply be childfree.
14. You can learn about parenting from your peers before you start that journey yourself.
If you hang back and don’t have kids right away, your friends and family members might have kids before you. During this time, you can get involved, help them with the baby, learn a few parenting tips from them and see if being a parent is really for you.
15. Your relationship with your own parents has grown and matured.
When you have your own kids, you will want to draw on experience from your own relationship with your parents. When you are young, you might have a strong bond, but the relationship isn’t based on you being an adult in your own right for very long. If you wait to have kids, your relationship with your parents can grow and mature, and by the time you have kids, you will be closer and have a lot more experience to draw from.
If you want to be in the right place to have children and it doesn’t feel like the absolute right time right now, perhaps give it a bit of time. Do a bit of living and revisit the idea when it feels right to you.